Tuesday 6 October 2020

Financial Discipline

"There is no growth without discipline."
So many things about our lives, work, and experiences require discipline. Just over the weekend, I had an interesting time with a wise old man. As he shared so many things about life, he said that where he is now in life has required making a lot of hard choices. He said he and his wife went through some rough patches but they have stayed together for the past 28 years.
There is so much we learned in his short speech, 28 years seems long but it is also short but what underlined their storyline is how they have worked together and maintained a discipline to bring them this far. My wife and I kept talking through the night about the wisdom we picked and were motivated to emulate some of the great disciplines.

Old & Poor

He talked about an old man who once told him, that it is bad to be "Old and Poor" - this old man was a teacher who taught many of the young people who have become prominent somebodies in this country - but the message to the wise man we were listening too was that we should work hard for our future, we should do whatever it takes to maintain a great financial discipline and put investments aside for the years when we won't be as active.
He encouraged us to invest in land, to do business - he said they failed countless times in many businesses, but that did not deter them because they had to do what it takes to prepare for the future. We marveled at some of the investments they had, and I told my wife that is old money, what we need from such guys is their wisdom, not their money.
Questions To Answer
As the month of October takes shape - ask yourself these three questions.
Where am I from?
Where am I now?
Where am I going?
Those questions need to be answered in the most brutal and honest way. We cannot keep saying that our future will take care of itself, we can't keep saying that, I earn too little to put some money aside for investment, we can't keep having the mindset of I can't do this, "I can't invest", "I can't save", "I can't start a business", etc. Right now in his late 50's going to 60's, the income he is getting is already more than good enough to cater for his life ahead, in 5 years, this man will be retired, but he won't be begging, he won't need to rely on his children, in fact, his children will perhaps be the ones to rely on the generational wealth, he has already put aside.
Financially Disciplined

It doesn't take rocket science to start being financially disciplined. Being financially disciplined is not just about eating rice and beans, it's about having a clear plan for your money- knowing where it is coming from, where it will go, and what it will do.
Some of the biggest problems the world is facing are the issue of financial discipline. We live in a spend-thrift culture, almost everything is got on the go, no plan, nothing at all. Buying out of impulse is the order of the day - the culture of consumerism is the ghost that visits us every day and takes away the little or much that we have- if only what is consumed could be positive consumption, then we would see many investments come up but alas, someone reading this will say ah! that's old talk, I have FOMO, YOLO, etc. The youth will say, I still have time - yours truly used to say he has time, I know many others like me used to say, "I have time" - remember this wise saying, "The race is not for the swift but time and chance happens to them all" - times happens to us all, how we use it and convert it into tangible results is entirely upon us. The woman or man in kikuubo(the common market for everyday people) works so hard, they don't speak or write good English like you do but they make wise investments with their money and time.

Another discipline you will need to learn is financial education, you won't wake up and say I will have 100m in my bank account in a month's time unless you are part of a corrupt cartel that would be - there are financial principles you will need to employ, shortcuts will kill you.

I have mentioned this quote many times and it resonates with the message today, "Personal finance is 80% behavior and 20% head knowledge" - Dave Ramsey

Do not solve a behavioral problem with a mathematical solution, you might be given a pay rise, but the status quo remains the same, the guys who ask for you to house a round of drinks will surely be waiting- It is written that as your money increases, those who spend it also increase. The wise have wealth and luxury, but fools spend whatever they get.

#Transform #Impact #Empower

Monday 10 August 2020

Patience As a Key Value

Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann on Unsplash

I recently heard a chat with two young people in their early and mid-20’s and in our conversation somehow we ended up talking about money. While talking about Patience in regards to investing, I used the analogy of African time within the context of Traffic Jam.

One of our biggest causes of traffic jams is indiscipline. 

Many road users (Matatu (taxi), other car owners, and the motorcycles commonly known as Boda Boda) are all part of the traffic jam menace. Such indiscipline isn’t very far, it is something we grow up with, in high school, when we used to stand on the line to pick food, we had bullies who would cut the lines and jump to the front just because they wanted to be ahead of others yet they were very late. Being late normally causes people to try and use short cuts and that is the norm many of us have grown up in. Back to traffic jam, we normally say Matatu (taxi) drivers and many road users use the same tactic of driving ahead, overtaking on the shoulders just because they want to be ahead, that mentality might seem a savior but in the long run, it can cost you a life, money and other resources.

I liken late investors to the kind of road users who wake up late and want to overtake, they are the type who will go for the get rich quick schemes or investments that seem to be too good to be true. When things go high wire, we end up hearing stories of how they crushed ahead, how they knocked another car or how their investments were a quack and someone run away with their hard-earned or money got on a loan.

On the other hand, I liken early investors to the type of people who wake up early and want to beat the jam, such people are always thinking invest early, wake up early to beat the jam so that you can maximize the early morning time to do other productive things that bring in more money instead of using shortcuts. It is written that Jacob served(worked) seven years to get Racheal, but they seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her (Genesis 29:20) - When you are focused on your goal and you are patience, getting what you have set to achieve will only seem like a few days, but you have to be PATIENT.

If you are the type who is already late, it is important to exercise patience, to avoid using shortcuts, to avoid overtaking cars, because two things can happen, you either knock others or you get knocked, it is not that you will always be lucky – if you are late, stick to the line and re-strategize, it is inconveniencing and slow but you will eventually reach your destination When late, you need to rethink your decisions for the next day or next investment, doing the right thing at the right time enables you to seize many opportunities. One of the reasons the Chinese are very good savers is because they are taught this early, from childhood, they are taught to envision hard times ahead and to put money aside for a rainy day. The Chinese have this culture because many of them grew up facing uncertain times, and their only weapon was early preparation – such values were passed on to their children.

Warren Buffet once said, "The stock market is a device for transferring money from the impatient to the patient" - I also read somewhere on the internet that patience is not just about how long we wait but how we behave while waiting - remember the anecdote of people who overtake while in a traffic jam, they aren't any different from those who look for getting rich quick schemes, you find you have sold land and invested in a quack deal.

We can beat the jam by rising up early, we can beat this money game by starting to invest early, we can avoid getting Get rich quick schemes by investing in the right knowledge and building our financial intelligence. Financial intelligence is built overtime, it is not something you learn overnight – it’s a continuous learning curve

#Transform #Impact #Empower 


Monday 20 July 2020

What Are Your Financial Emergency Tools

Photo by Tory Bishop on Unsplash

Life has taught us so many things and we continue to discover so much more every day. The beauty about life is that there is no quick-fix solution to everyday problems but there are universal principles that can be applied.

Whoever owns and drives a car, in their boot their are tools that are needed for any emergency that occurs. Often for a properly set car, the boot will have a car jack, wheel spanner, spare tyre, toolbox, etc. The manufacturer of the car doesn't put those things in there for decoration, they all have a purpose and when in need, they come in handy.

Whenever you travel, travellers have key things they must carry while travelling, things like a first Aid box, extra clothes, extra cash, these days power banks for smartphones is very handy. While travelling by water, a life jacket is a must kit to have, there are extras for an emergency, for big ships, there are lifeboats that are tacked somewhere for an emergency.

We learn that you have to envisage that the road will not always be smooth even if you have always had a good drive or sail, those emergency tools are a must-have and it can't be taken for granted even if a serious incident hasn't happened.

When it comes to personal finance, we are often told to have emergency funds. An emergency fund is purposely for emergencies, it isn't for saving or even making money out of it. Sudden times like the COVID pandemic can come unannounced, it could take longer than expected, but the funds could helpline such period, even sudden sickness, accidents, etc

Purpose To build an emergency fund that can take you through 3 to 6 months expenses as recommended by many financial experts, You can start by putting away 10% of your earnings towards emergency, be wise like the car manufacturers, you can drive and get a puncture, the spare tyre comes in handy until the original tyre is fixed, we need to be wise and do the same too even with our personal finances - Have an emergency fund.

It feels very uncomfortable to do such rudimentary things, but the road ahead doesn't spare anyone, you are better off prepared than ill-prepared. This is the rule of life, “Do the easy and comfortable and life will be difficult, do the difficult and uncomfortable and life will be easier”

#Transform #Impact #Empower

Wednesday 1 July 2020

The Mindset To Start All Over Again When It Seems Uncertain

Photo by kevin turcios on Unsplash

Dear Readers,
"It is never too late to be who you might have been" 
- George Eliot
A happy new month to you all.
As we start the month of July, some of the greatest things in mind are How can we tackle Ignorance when it comes to Financial Literacy? How can we start small ventures with what we have? How can we sail through the COVID19 storm by beginning all over? I will be documenting some great articles to give us insight on a few things. I will share some videos as well. If you also have an insight, please feel free to share, comment, etc. Let us rally ourselves to become better with our finances, seek financial peace, build empires from scratch, and win in this area. We can not let ignorance rob us of financial well being.

I remember telling myself there are things I need to own by a certain age but it took a little longer, I remember thinking that after leaving University, I would easily get a job but that did not happen, I had to do other things as I prepped for them jobs, as I grow older, I get to realize what is even more important is how I use the resources I have to do other ventures. Things have never come that easy for me, you could be like me too and there are stories we can learn from you. But every day was a new day to press on, try something new and all those are valuable lessons for life.

I remember losing some good money to fake land purchase and it set me back but because I had the principles that I had harnessed over time, I started all over again.
One of my properties was also sold off without my permission and I had to give it up but start all over.
I lost an opportunity to get property worth some good amount of money and the money was diverted to other things, that fired me up to know that hey! my future is in my hands and I will have to work hard for my own stuff.

I remember being told by a relative, that you can not develop without a loan but I purposed to beat those odds, I purposed to try out doing something without a loan, as a matter of fact, my bank turned down my loan request and that pushed me to tighten my belt for 3 years without touching a particular saving I put aside. I told myself, "I can do it and did everything possible to walk that journey", it was painful, not easy at all, lots of sacrifices had to be made.
Can you change your mindset to start all over, can you build the mental fortitude to leave what is in the past and press on to what is new? Every failure has been a school of hard knocks for me because
I have picked the lessons and used them to get better.

When it comes to Children, Have you done anything in regards to planning school fees? It is tough when a child can't eat, can't have good shelter, can't get medical care, good education or even basic clothing these are deep-seated questions we need to tackle even when income comes in an irregular way. Hard times can fall on us suddenly and the wisdom God gives us when he tells us to study the life of Ants is that they are always preparing, always gathering for winter.

I have read some amazing articles, books and also watched videos that make my heart race, and in the words of Solomon, I would rather be rebuked by a wise man than praised by a fool.
When I read things like it is not the amount of money that counts but the plan, it makes me think twice how to use money.
I remember saying to my mentor, 'If I had more money, I would have a better plan.' He quickly responded, 'I would suggest that if you had a better plan, you would have more money.' You see, it's not the amount that counts; it's the plan that counts. - Jim Rohn
What's your plan? so let us make do and start all over, let us read on and most especially use the knowledge we will get. Allow yourself to be a beginner
God bless you all.
Happy New Month
#Transform #Impact #Empower

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