By Josh Okello
Cracking the financial code is very easy and simple than we complicate it. It is not a rocket science yet a lot of people spend their entire lives scratching their heads on how to make money or have it in abundance. Too much money isn’t enough money, the only enough money is a well budgeted money. So do you have a budget or are you in the leading category of the people who work from pay-check-to-pay-check and save nothing? Seat back, relax as I am about to crack the financial code for you:
- Spend Less Than You Earn
I wish I could simplify it further but it cannot get any simpler. If you earn a minimum wage, aim at spending less than 10 dollars a day. It does not matter what people say or think about your expenditure, what is important is that you achieve your financial goals. When I was starting up, I lived on cheap canned foods and bought my groceries on sale. After doing the math, I was spending less than 15 dollars a week on food because I would bring my homemade lunch with me to work. (I still do). Cut those unnecessary expenditures and be honest with your friends and tell them that you are saving for a given goal.
- Ask Financial Questions
These are questions that I still ask myself to date before I spend a dime. “How will I see the value of whatever I am buying one year from today?” Will the value increase or decrease? Will I be satisfied with my expenditures then or not? Where else could I have invested that money to multiply? What if I saved it? Could it earn me something bigger like a land, a dream car, dream house, engagement ring, business suit, start my own business?
- Be Honest With Yourself
You are earning a minimum wage, so why live a Silicon Valley life? Never be ahead of yourself. Accept your financial challenges and work towards overcoming them. No financial challenge is big enough to not overcome and there is no money big enough to not finish. People go bankrupt therefore trade wisely. Discuss with your partner and live a life even if it means starting from the bottom.
- Avoid Debt
Your credit card is a big blessing in your life but you intentionally choose to make it a curse. Never use your credit card unless you are totally out of options. The percentage interests you are paying to the bank are ridiculous if you crunch the numbers therefore try and pay your debt as soon as possible. Never pay minimum premiums they ask you for, if you can pay the whole amount at once, do it and if you cannot then pay more than just premiums every month. You will get out of debt fast but not easy.
- Spend from Your Chequing Account
Some banks charge you exorbitant prices when you spend directly from your savings. Learn to save by using your chequing account. Never use your savings account to pay for groceries and if that is the only way then transfer the funds to your chequing then use them from that account.
- Get an Extra Source of Income
Get a part time job, clean cars for people, do lawns for those who can pay you, walk dogs on your neighbourhood. Are you gifted in a given area or are you skilled and experienced in a given field? How about changing it into a money cow? Personally, I write on business, leadership, entrepreneurship and coaching and that is how I make my extra revenues. Build a number of revenue generation methods and save until you achieve your financial goals. Better off, ask yourself, why do you want to be financially stable? If you can answer that question then you are halfway to financial stability. You must first deny yourself to accumulate in abundance.
- Learn to Give
The late South African Reggae artists Lucky Dube sang, “Blessed is the hand that giveth, than the hand that taketh.” Learn to give and you will get it back. Take your time and volunteer with churches, organizations, businesses, not-for-profits and such. You will meet people who might be interested in your skills. It is great to be economical but worst to be a miser. When you get, remember those who have not. Be human with your blessings.
© Joshua Okello 2015.
Joshua Okello is a B.A graduate in Business Administration, International Development and Philosophy. He is also the author of the book Strategies of Entrepreneurial Leadership He has exceptional skills in organizing, coordinating projects and capacity building initiatives with key emphasis on livelihood programs; microfinance through savings and credit led models; business development services and entrepreneurial leadership. He is also the founder and Executive Director of Succeed Africa Relief Organization, a Canadian Christian Organization geared towards giving hope and transformation in lives of the chronically poor in Africa.