Disclaimer: I am not an accredited financial advisor. Please treat the information below as purely informational and from lived experiences.
The African saying remains true to this day; “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.“
It is important to build around you people, places and things that will inspire you to achieve your financial success. You may love being alone, and there is nothing wrong with enjoying solitude and privacy, but if you really want to achieve real tangible results, you do need to build a team of like-minded factors around you.
People: People are important because they are who we interact with on a daily basis. Even if it is through texting or on social media, by email or over the phone, you are interacting with people. If you want to upgrade your financial position, assess the caliber of people you spend most of your time with. Are they in a good or better position than you are?
If the answer is no, ask yourself if you will be able to achieve your dreams by maintaining the same type of relationships you have in the present. Now, I am not suggesting to go ahead and ditch your friends (although in some cases you will have to), but rather take an honest sobering view of what your friends bring to the table. It could even be your spouse, family member, work colleague, or study companion, insert appropriately here.
The second question to ask is, are they willing or open to change for the better? This is especially relevant for those of you who have long-term relationships with anchoring figures in your life. Sometimes the answer can be daunting, and sometimes you can be pleasantly surprised by the answers you find. If you are truly seeking change, you will be able to have honest conversations with the people in your life that you care about, and they will be willing to agree to some type of gradual change. Remember, you are always looking for gradual change, and not immediate change, because the former lasts longer.
If you are just starting out in your financial journey and do not know how to define the people you want in your life, start by using your vision board and a memoir. Describe in detail what your ideal group of friends would look like, and use imagery to bring that vision to life. Like attracts like. Define in your own terms, what you would be able to bring to the table if you had these group of friends or people around you, and be willing to work on yourself as well.
Ideally, you should read books about people who inspire you and learn from their mistakes. What did they do wrong that you could do differently now? Measure your progress by assessing your values and watching how these are slowly formed, by what you watch on TV, who you follow on social media, and how you give back to relationships in the now.
As you slowly build your ideal circle of friends and family, you will feel and see your life and your experiences begin to change. You responses to situations and the way you handle challenges will be different from how you used to handle it before and you will feel a sense of purpose.
A word of caution here: Avoid toxicity at all costs. Toxic people breed toxic habits (you can quote me on that). Be careful who you let into your life because not everyone is rooting for your success. A lot of people will gloat at your failure. It takes time to build meaninful and true relationships so do not be in a hurry to form deep connections with just about anyone. Take your time, and use good judgement.
Places: It is important to visit places and to define what the perfect place looks like for you. By places I mean actual physical locations on the map, and not virtual reality. In a world where majority of people spend their time on either the computer, or their phone, or TV, it pays to turn your eyes to the world infront of you. Travelling has always been a way to expand your mind, meet new people, try new things and get a deeper appreciation of life.
Commit to travelling once a year to a new country. If you plan your finances right, save up and budget, this should be a fairly achievable task for you within your first if not your second year. Do not get sucked in to spending more than you make when you travel. The good rule of thumb, especially for credit cards is spend only 30% of your card limit. If you cannot do that, and if you do not have 30% saved up already to travel, then by all means I advise you to defer that trip. Because going ahead with the trip is only going to lead to anxiety about how you will cover that cost and what your credit score will look like.
Travel with a partner or a group of friends. This does two things for you; you get to split the expenses, you create memories. Travelling alone is good if you are running away from a situation or just looking for a fresh start. I would rather you are looking for a fresh start than the former, because running from a situation does not make it disappear, it just postpones the problem to another day. Build the confidence to face your challenges head on, and then travel for leissure.
Visiting places improves your relationship with money. I know it may sound like I am contradicting myself here, but stay with me for a moment. When you plan a trip right, you are planning for eventualities, unforeseen expenses and the foreseen expenses like room and board, food and transport. Travelling also helps expand your financial understanding of foreign currencies by seeing first hand how your currency is valued (or devalued) based on which country you visit, and building a better appreciation for the value of money.
Things: This can refer to activities you do on a daily basis to build your financial astuteness. A good daily habit is practicing gratitude. The other is keeping a journal, and the third is budgeting. I know I harp on this a lot but it has done wonders not just for my personal life, but also my professional and business life. Understanding the ebb and flow of money is important if you want to grow your financial acumen. Get in the habit of saying thank you for the little things. Get in the habit of doing a small daily exercise, even if it is simple breathing exercises, yoga, or a walk down the street. As you build on the things you have, making sure to avoid clutter, you will see an improvement in your mental well being.
You are free to change your habits based on the season or your personal needs. For example, a walk down the street might not be ideal in the winter time, but feels great in spring. In the winter, you can choose to play board or card games, or read books to each other, if you have a book club. Maintaining and growing these activities will help keep you on the right path to success and steer you clear of danger else where.
I would love to write to much more on this topic but for now I encourage you to go and practice based on the little nuggets I have shared so far.
To your success
2 thoughts on “Building a Village for Financial Success”
This was a good read.
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Great article! Building a supportive network of people and incorporating positive habits can go a long way in achieving financial success.
Thank you Elmer for reading. It warms my heart to help others discover new ways or relearn old ways to build wealth.
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