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My personal journey to Financial Freedom (In-progress)

I’m getting older day by day and I kept on being fond of the idea of being rich not to the point of being one of the richest people in the world. But just having the level of financial freedom where I don’t need to worry about my bills and other payables. I guess everybody wants that.

I even told myself when I was a kid that I should be rich at the age of 30. Now that I am 28, I feel the pressure. Yes, it was a promise I made to myself as a kid but it is still my goal today.

This year I told myself that I have to step up further. I had to stop myself from buying unnecessary things and focus on investing. If there’s something I need to buy, it should be something useful for me to make money.

There are people I know who also work from home who has multiple clients. They encourage me to do the same because the more jobs you have the more income you may have.

But the mindset I have is quite different, maybe I just learned these things as I go along with this financial journey. I think my income is good enough but the way I spend it wasn’t.

Meet the temptations

The hardest thing to do to financial freedom is not budgeting, not investing, and not earning more.

It is really the “how to control yourself”. It’s hard because there’s a lot of apps and sites that are luring us to spend.

Like online shopping. How convenient it is to order cheap furniture that is almost 70% less than the mall price these days. The sale is always popping up on your notifications and it’s very irresistible.

I even bought a cute Casio Calculator with a pouch recently because it’s really cute and I made a reasonable reason to myself to get it. But I know for a fact that it is not necessary at all. The reason I bought it is because my phone is always with my kids and my keyboard doesn’t have a Numpad. It was hard to calculate fast sometimes. 🙄

We also have social media trying to make us feel like what we have is less valuable than any others. Let’s make the Home Buddies group an example. Disclaimer, I’m not against these groups.

There are a lot of people flexing their beautiful homes and different things they bought that made things easier for them.

It’s everyone’s right to flex whatever they want right, but a lot of people are getting affected by these.

Yes, some would’ve motivated others to do well to reach the certain level they see on social media but some suffer because the motivation they get reaches the point of being pressured.

I somehow learned how to control myself and here’s how I did it

Well, this self-control hasn’t led me to get rich obviously but that’s the first thing to learn. Celebrating little things.

So far managing to celebrate little things makes me feel happier. In other terms it is gratitude. If we’re thankful for what we currently have and we appreciate them we are less likely to get lured by temptations.

Appreciating how sweeping the floor helps us do some exercise and have time to move away from our pc for a little bit is good enough rather than having a robot vacuum cleaner that is expensive and could cause higher electricity bills.

Whenever I feel like buying these kinds of stuff, I had to pause for a bit and think. If I buy this what good will it do and what are the consequences. Most of the time buying unnecessary things would have more consequences than what good it can do for you. And sometimes we try to give it a good reason than finding the bad. Just like what happened with the calculator purchase. Try hard to bash the item you just WANT to buy.

Liability and Assets

There are 2 terms I learned from reading Rich Dad Poor Dad, even though I didn’t finish it because of my laziness. The first is Liabilities and the other one is Assets.

Most of us when it comes to assets we think of buying a home so we don’t have to rent or buy a car and things that normal people buy. But what we never thought of is the Cashflow.

Cashflow is a very basic term it’s just the in and out of our money right. When we buy a home for our family, we will stop renting of course. But in our cash flow, how would our money move if we buy this home.

All our money would still move out. It will not come in. Therefore it is not an asset to have a home, it is a liability.

A new mindset about cashflow

I always wanted my own house, who doesn’t? But after realizing the concept of Liabilities, Assets, and Cashflow everything has changed.

We are renting a house with my mom and my sister. I only pay 3000. We have a room that is large enough for my small family. I have a submeter for my electricity and we share for the water. So far I am okay with that.

My husband wanted to separate of course but if we do, we had to pay a monthly down payment for the house and then the monthly amortization. It would definitely be higher than our rent.

So I thought, maybe we could get a house or condo in the future and instead of living there we could rent it out. That way I could turn my liability into a real asset that would bring in money to us.

After that, we can expand properties for our own home. It is still a plan but I finally have a new perspective about assets.

Try to figure out if things you wanted to have would really act as an asset if not then it’s up to you to decide.

Actions towards your plans

The common mistake that we get when it comes to planning is that it is just written yet our actions stay different. We tend to think that our actions should always have a great impact on our plan but it is always hard to make the impact.

What we don’t realize is that our actions don’t always have to be immediately impacting that goal that we have.

If you want a detailed way on how to do that let me give you an example. Let’s go back with our goal of having our own house.

I’m sure you’ve heard about SMART goals. The goal should be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound. People always discuss that topic as if it is easy. But it’s hard for me.

If I want a house, I had to Specifically say that this 1.5M house is what I want and I can measure it by checking my savings account, I think it’s attainable but how relevant it is I don’t know, if I say 5 years then I should save 25,000 PHP a month. Now it’s attainable but are there any circumstances that I couldn’t attain that? Yes, maybe, who knows! In 5 years do I still have the same job? Would there be nothing else that could hinder my goals? No one really knows.

That’s why for long-term goals, I don’t think this would be an option. Maybe it could be for those who are great that use the methodology but for us normal pipz, it would take time and we may end up giving up because even the planning phase is hard.

How to really plan and execute then?

Come up with a plan or set up your goals first. Under one big goal, split it up with tiny goals that could help you reach your goals it may be an action as well but turn that action into a sub-goal. So I’ll share an example of how I would plan to buy a house.

creating a plan for your financial goals

So this is just a simple mind map of how I plan to buy a house. Again this is just an example that you can try. This draft doesn’t have the specifics yet on how much should I save to buy a house in 5 years because it will all depend on my action. I can just do what I have to do first so I could set specifics in the future. We should always act towards our goals. I can’t save even if I forced myself to save a specific amount if my actions always lean to spending right? I’d be stuck forever dreaming If I don’t take little steps and always say that I would save if I have 25k a month.

As you could see I have there the things I should aim and at the bottom part is the possible actions to take for me to reach those goals.

Save

I have to save for an emergency fund, I didn’t add a specific amount because I plan to continuously add on that. There’s also a time deposit here on my list, which honestly I hated before but since there’s Tonik I think I would love this too. And save to buy a laptop.

My gosh Miel why save and buy a liability? Hehehe, actually I had issues in creating more content which slowed down my income with blogging because of my current PC. I also entered YouTube recently and I couldn’t edit vlogs faster because of the PC problems. So for working from home people and content creators like me a fast laptop or PC is an asset as it saves time and helps us do more.

One of my action plans there to save it to remove unused subscriptions because I am an addicted subscriber to anything. LOL. I even requested to downgrade my hosting for this site and paid for it for 2 years so I won’t have to worry about it.

I strongly suggest building an emergency fund or savings that can be easily accessed when needed and one that is locked. I recently reviewed Tonik Banking App because I can have multiple savings via stash for different goals and they have a high rate for time deposits.

Earn more

I mentioned earlier I didn’t want to have multiple jobs because jobs will stop me from having freedom. Jobs limit us in terms of earnings and time, we usually earn based on the amount of time we spent on it. And time for me is very valuable. I have one full-time job that is enough for a living. So my take on earning more is monetizing what I love to do.

That is blogging.

I don’t earn much from it but still, it’s something. I also run ads that pay in Bitcoin so automatically my earnings are being sent to my Crypto savings to earn Bitcoin Interest and act as my Crypto Investments. And my Adsense is being paid out through GCash so those are the funds I intent to use for GInvest.

If you are not a content creator, try to find some other ways to earn money. The thing that you are good at which maybe you can monetize or try out some small business. I don’t really suggest having multiple jobs but if you can do that it can be an option as well.

Investments

Making an investment is taking risks but they usually pay off if you do/know well and if you hold for longer periods of time. I’m a bad trader but I’m in crypto for a long time. Back then I earn and spend crypto but after understanding better I decided to take it as a serious investment.

The good thing about investing these days is that it is now more accessible for us. Unlike in the past that you can only invest with banks that require a high minimum investment amount.

GInvest has now investment products that have a minimum of 50PHP investment amount and Binance with a minimum of 1000PHP. For those who don’t know Binance isn’t just a trading platform they actually have staking and saving features for cryptocurrencies as well. So there’s really no more reason for us to stop and do it later.

The flow of the plan

I think the plan I made is not that concrete yet but I think it has a very good flow. If you’ll go back to that image you’ll see that one of my savings should lead to earning more, the other one should help for the rent out the unit I want to have and what I earned more will go to investments.

Even you route yourself in a different path let’s say you wanted to build a business, you can save the money from your main income by cost-cutting and paying bills on time. And invest your business income back to your business for expansion or to something else for diversification.

Awareness is the Key

Being aware of what you earn, what you spend on, and what you need to spend can unlock many possibilities. Being aware helps you identify the problems.

Knowing when and how much will be your upcoming dues can help you avoid penalties. At the same time, you can budget ahead of time if you know all your recurring payments.

I used to try many apps to log my expenses just to be aware of the things but logging them one by one is quite exhausting.

Pro tip: Recurring Expense Calendar

I think one tip that I can share that helped me a lot is by creating a separate calendar on Google Calendar.

multiple calendars on google calendar to manage you expenses

For those who don’t know you can create multiple calendars on Google Calendar. In this calendar, I created recurring events that contain what I have to pay every week since I get paid weekly. But things that are due on a different date are also added on the Friday before its due date.

So I add the item of what needs to be paid, the amount, and the date. Here’s an example:

Creating a Calendar for Recurring Expenses
hehehe paluwagan of me, my cousin and my sis..

All fixed recurring payments are added to that calendar. If you’re wondering about electricity bills and other bills that vary every month, I just to do a high estimate forecast of how much it will be.

To wrap it up

What I’m trying to do here in this post is share what I’ve been doing so far. It is still in progress so nothing is guaranteed to work well.

I just wanted to share this because maybe it could also help you clear out all the confusion you have right now. Sometimes reading success stories inspires us but seeing what others do sparks us to create something even better from what we’ve seen.

I’m hoping that it would be the latter for you. Share your thoughts on the comment section maybe you have something to add or share.

x

Miel

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