“People who don’t eat avocado have a special place in hell.” That is how her speech started in a public speaking class. She hit below the belt because I am not a consumer of avocado. With all the stories I have heard growing up about hell, believe me, it is the last place I want to go, leave alone having a special place there as insinuated by the speaker.
Each new day comes with its own experiences and pressures. Learn how to identify and shun negative pressures in life.
The two-minutes speech pressured me into wanting to learn how to eat avocado. I understand that they are yummy and nutritious to the body and has numerous functions; Some use it as a fruit or food additive, face masks, hair oil, etc. Despite all this, it has just never appealed to me. I almost succumbed to the pressure, but then thought ‘It’s never that serious’, it is just a speech.
Pressure, ‘Peer’ or not, can influence us positively or negatively. Some pressures, we impose on ourselves after an experience, watching a movie, or reading a book.
After reading the book titled “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”, I came across the quote “The poor and the middle-class work for money. The rich have money work for them” I wanted the latter. I wanted money to work for me. I pressured myself into learning Financial Management, investing to gain knowledge in that field. In this journey, I have gathered some insights I would like to share with you.
- “It is not about how much money you make. It is not about how much you save. It is about how much money you invest” ~Tim Denning
- Make saving a habit. When you receive an income, save then spend what is left. That is being intentional in saving, just like tithing 10% of your income
- Always budget for your income – Start with what you cannot do without, and if you cannot afford something, you rather wait than get into a debt
- If you are in debt, create a plan to clear your debt, and be committed until you are debt-free
- Have an emergency fund – Put aside funds for emergencies. Ideally, your emergency fund should be able to take care of you for at least 6 months in case your income stops
- Create a retirement plan – You need to think of your retirement in terms of; where you want to live, and how much you will need to live a comfortable life, then start saving towards that. It is never too late to start saving for your retirement
Recently, I was privileged to attend a zoom session on Financial Management facilitated by Ann Nakhumicha where I learned how to, and the importance of reviewing your Financial plan every six months. As shared by the facilitator, below are questions you need to ask yourself in the review and act accordingly.
- What steps did you take to push you closer to my goal?
- What things happened that put you further from your goals?
- What money mistakes have you made in the last month?
- Why did you make those mistakes?
- Are your financial goals still realistic?
- Is your emergency fund fully-funded?
- Are you saving enough to retire comfortably?
- Are you meeting my short-term goals in terms of savings and needs?
- Are you on track with my savings for my children?
- What steps can you take to ensure you have a better month?
This can be a full plate for you if you do not have a Financial plan or never thought strategically about your finances, but the good news is that when you know better you do better. There is always a starting point and with intentionality, you can achieve whatever it is you have set your mind to.
What kind of pressure have you succumbed to? What pressure did you triumph over? Each new day comes with its own experiences and pressures. Learn how to identify and shun negative pressures in life. Appreciate and embrace positive pressures, which help you set new goals, propel you to achieve milestones in life, and empower you to better someone else’s life.
Stella Cheboi– Programs officer, Leadership Development