Learning about personal finance is a very important piece of knowledge that all of us should know, the only problem is that not everyone knows about it. We are not taught about finances in school, and the argument then shifts to the parents’ need to teach you about that but not all parents are educated in this. It is up to you to learn it but with the internet is easier more than ever but it comes down the individual of what to apply and how to. There are many people out there who make videos, blogs, etc.
During the first lockdown, I went down many rabbit holes, one of which was personal finance. I already had the good habit of saving every month, budgeting, and tracking my spendings. Very rarely would I ever go into the red, I would keep myself disciplined and stick to the budget that I had set. But what happens, when you do all this and it is not enough. During the lockdown, I realised I needed to do more so I watched YouTube videos from financial loving enthusiasts to get their take on how to maximise my finance and ways to make use of it.
Some of the people I came across were Jennifer from Mamafurfur, Annie Margarita Yang, Graham Stephan, Andrei Jikh, Investing with Rose, ALUX and Nate O’Brien. All these people I highly recommend checking out, while I can’t apply everything to me but I can learn a lot from them. Ranging from habits to adopt, savings, to investing, and more. When you watch a lot of financially loving people on YouTube or any other platform, take it with a grain of salt as they are not financial experts who are qualified just simply sharing their advice, and it’s up to you if you want to act upon it. Plus a lot of their advice may not apply to you who may live in a different country that has different rules. Some things they talk about often vary but they do talk about stocks, savings, budgeting, property, side hustles, good habits etc.
Watching these creators, I learned that it is not only important to save but invest as well. Saving money may be good but that is not necessarily going to make it grow and work for me in the long term by doing only that. I thought to myself that I needed to invest and although I won’t see the gains in the short-term by diligently investing a stable amount that I can afford, it will pay off. I remember when I would ask my dad about investing and a lot of stuff that I learned, he didn’t know which is proof that parents won’t always have the answer, it is up to us ourselves to do the research and apply it to ourself. Don’t follow someone’s advice blindly, think about it as it is our money that we are using and what happens to it is the individual’s decision.
In terms of investing I invested a portion of my money into low-cost index funds via a stocks and shares ISA, which are always safer than individual stocks, I don’t plan on touching this investment for about 5-10 yrs. I have only just started investing and I try not to let it overwhelm me as I would often see increases and loss of profits but that is something that I shouldn’t be emotionally attached to, as that will lead to fear resulting in me damaging my future finances prospects. It is something that I have gotten accustomed to but I know I will get better with time and that money I am investing may be small but it will grow with time through compounded interest. My small amount will be multiplied several times as the years go by, I cannot wait for the result.
Other investments would be this blog, I don’t know where this blog will go and it is a very long-term investment but again investing is about the long term, it will never be the short term to equal healthy financial growth. I invested by buying a domain and using my time to craft it, time will tell if it becomes successful. When investing it is not always about profiting, you will be risking your money/time and see if you get a good return on that investment in the future. Another reason I started the blog is that I have a passion for blogging but more on that in a future post. It is always good if you have a passion for doing something that could potentially lead to another income source.
From watching the videos of the creators mentioned, I have also learned I need to diversify my income sources. Right now all my income comes from one source, which is terrifying as the situation in the world today is not relatively safe. All my eggs are in one basket and if something happens to it, I would virtually have no money at all. This worried me, which was more important to start investing as soon as possible because the longer I put off the less time my investments have to grow and not make as much as I would like in the future.
Another worthwhile investment had to be in educating myself and the career I want to go into, by investing in myself that is something that pays off, and the knowledge I gain no one can take it from me. My ambition career-wise is to go into social media marketing. I decided that this is something I see myself wanting to do and it is not easy to decide what career you want to do for the rest of your life. I started doing online courses in social media strategy and project management, both of which are good. Although the information is dated and you may have to pay for some courses I highly recommend it as it is a good purchase. There are sites like Alison, Udemy, and others. I also started reading again, in books that I wanted to read, such as books about finances, marketing, mindsets, and so on. I find the current books I’m reading very interesting, I do it at my own pace and it does help with giving me valuable insight into what I’m interested in. I probably would recommend the books in a future blog post.
I have also been looking into properties and on average how much they could potentially cost. Properties are a very stable asset if I rent them out but it would take me a while to have the capital to purchase one as well as manage all the hidden costs. I still think it is good to educate yourself about properties for the day I can buy one.
That is currently what I have learned at the moment but the journey of personal finance is never-ending, I still have yet to experience a lot of struggles and getting to a point where I do have large expenses. During this start of my journey, I have realised the importance of assets vs liabilities and how the money I have coming in isn’t always reflective of my own net worth. Regardless of the future, I know I would be better prepared for them. I would love to hear about some of your personal finance stories as well.