: By Ololade Oloniyo
Financial freedom means having enough savings, cash and money that you need to fund your lifestyle and the life of your dreams too. But the sad story is that few people plan for financial freedom, it might be a lot more difficult because of the ever-increasing rate of inflation and unexpected events plaguing the Nigerian markets; however, if you carefully set achievable goals, financial freedom will be yours.
First things first, get a hold of a budget. Sticking to a realistic budget is important. Increase the ratio (if need be, probably because of inflation) of the budget, and determine to cut out unnecessary spending. If you have been spending 30% of your income or allowance on wants, you might have to shred it down to 20%. What most smart people do is that they tie down their wants to goal execution. For example, if one of your goals for this year is to take a professional course, tie the goal to one of your wants. E.g buy yourself a spar session after you finished the course. Although, the trick here is that you might have to make the costs of the spar session exactly 20% of your income or allowance. The idea behind this is to reduce the habits of wasting money on your wants.
Keeping an emergency fund in any interest-yielding account (not a regular savings account) is another way to grow your emergency fund. An emergency fund is a type of savings account that contains money to be used during unforeseen situations or emergencies. It might not bring you financial freedom, but it is a good option when you really need funds during a crisis.
Another way to prepare for financial freedom is to engage in a goal-oriented investment strategy. You should identify your clear financial goals, set a timeline for each of them and regularly invest to achieve your goals. The moment you get clear on what you want and how much time you have to achieve the goal, then it’s easier to develop an investment strategy. Find out your risk tolerance level and what kind of investor you are. The goal-oriented investment strategy helps you to answer questions such as how much to invest, where and when to start investing. Lastly, it gives you an overriding purpose to stay committed no matter the challenge.
Consider investing in dollars to hedge against inflation in Nigeria. Also find ways to diversify income into fin-tech wallets such as Piggy vest, Rise Vest, Ladda app, Cowry-wise, etc.
In conclusion, make efforts to invest in financial literacy. Financial education helps you to better understand how money works and what your money can do for you. Interestingly, financial skills are not taught in schools, yet it’s the most significant skill that grows your earning potential and increases the quality of your life. It might require some time or effort, but if you will invest in it, the lifetime benefit is yours to enjoy! Start today!