Reaching financial freedom doesn’t follow a paved path. There are detours, obstacles and roadblocks on this journey, and it can become really difficult to navigate.
For me, financial freedom means that I have freedom over my time. It means that I don’t need to answer to someone at all hours of the day, or be reliant on trading 8 hours of my time for a steady paycheck. While that may not be my reality right now, it is the goal I ultimately strive for and I know that there are sacrifices I need to make to navigate my path.
Today I am sharing 5 financial “weapons” to have in your back pocket on your own path to financial freedom. A combination of these 5 weapons will equip you for any challenge that meets you on your path!
Your 5 Financial Weapons
Frugality is defined as being prudent or economical with consumable resources. It’s a nicer way to say “cheap.” While I do not recommend ever being a cheapskate or cheaping out on certain purchases, I do find that a frugal mindset will help you live as far below your means as possible.
For me, I choose to live frugally in regards to material items. Now, this doesn’t mean I am cheap when it comes to these items, but I do focus on maximizing the value of anything I purchase. For example, if I am going to buy new clothes, I focus first only on what I need, and then I focus on finding the highest quality item for the lowest price. I give myself limits on how much I am willing to spend on a certain item, and I won’t buy something that is outside of those limits. Focus on finding the areas of your life you are willing to be more frugal in, and start proactively cutting costs.
Having a sense of self-discipline is MAJOR. Your personal finance journey starts with learning the art of self-discipline and keeping promises to yourself, and this transcends across all areas of your life. Being able to stick to the guidelines you’ve set for yourself, or make decisions based on the goals you’ve made for yourself, will change your life and it will change the way you view money in general. Learn how to say no and how to make decisions for your own better good, without being influenced by outside factors.
Multiple Income Streams
This is an area I am still working on myself, but building a second or even third income stream will help boost your financial situation and give you a safety net if you find yourself unemployed. Income streams look different for everyone, but this could include creating a side hustle, babysitting, picking up a second part-time job, investing and earning dividends, real estate, etc. This doesn’t need to be (and probably won’t be) an immediate change, but even beginning to think about how you can create more income for yourself will put you in a position of power regarding your finances.
Patience is a virtue, and it is key with your finances. Unless you win the lottery, seeing financial progress takes time. This is why it is call a financial journey; it’s a marathon, not a sprint. For most of us, it will take years (like 20 years or more) to create a foundation and actually build substantial enough wealth to reach financial freedom. So if you find yourself discouraged, try to focus on the end goal and stay on your path. I like to break it up by setting smaller financial goals along the way, so it doesn’t feel like I am working towards nothing for so long.
The journey to financial freedom can get discouraging, and there will be times where it feels like you aren’t making progress or you have to take a few steps in the wrong direction. Such is life, and it is inevitable. It’s really important to stay optimistic about your future and keep a positive attitude, even when times become challenging. You’ll likely also be faced with criticism, or other people’s negative opinions about decisions that you make for yourself in order to stay on your own path, and you’ll need to find a way to deal with that without getting discouraged or dissuaded.
A combination of these 5 weapons will help you combat any distractions or roadblocks on your path to financial freedom. They may not all need to be used at once, but at some point along your journey you’ll need to pull each one out of your toolkit to navigate your own journey. Keep in mind that no one path is the same, and we all define financial freedom differently. What is most important is that you are happy with the direction you’re moving in, and that you see progress with all of your efforts.