– A Henok Reflection
Being in control of our finances is something most of us struggle with irrespective how much we earn. Some of us would like to see things different but our lack of self-discipline keeps holding us in a dark hole where we constantly pray for the month to pass for the next payday.
I recently sat down to restructure my finances and after doing few calculations I realised that I am officially financially independent, employed or not.
Because, as of 24 July 2019, I had amassed N$78 560.66 in savings. An amount I am super-proud of, considering that, I have only had an actual job for less than 8 months and I have been living on my own for almost 2 years.
I believe I have been able to save this much because of my lifestyle and the way I view money. I might be 22 but I have had the same mobile phone for the past 17 months, an iPhone 4 and yes, call me old school but I have not thought of upgrading.
Can I afford a “better” phone? Definitely, but do I NEED something better than my current phone? Nope and that is my secret.
I live off this principle, in as much as an iPhone 7 might be a better phone, it will not bring any value to me and that is reason enough for me not to spend any cent on it. I apply this principle to other aspects of my life as well. I do not spend on anything that I am only acquiring because it is only fun to have, it must bring me value, and it must add to me one way or another.
I have made mistakes in the past like spending N$ 5 000 on alcohol in less than a day and regretting it seconds later but I have learnt that so much about irresponsible financial behaviours is not about how much we don’t set aside for savings or investments but more of what we choose to spend on. Stop trying to buy self-esteem, stop trying to buy status and stop trying to buy friends.
It is important to be aware of how even the smallest of the not-so-useful things we choose to spend our money on end up taking a huge toll on our finances, long-term and short-term.
Why should you buy things that do not add to you?
Do not buy an iPhone simply because it is now the preferred “smart phone” and you can afford it too. If you find androids more useful for you, stick with androids instead of buying a wildly expensive smart phone that only ends up serving as a calls, texts and photos accessory…and maybe help you fit in with the other kids.
What are some of your money management tips?