How to reach financial freedom in 2023
I will breathe. I will think of solutions. I will not let my worry control me. I will not let my stress level break me. I will simply breathe. And it will be okay.
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With the end of the year being right around the corner, I started seriously thinking about my finances, goals, and where I have to go in the future. Last few years, I have been focusing on creating memories, enjoying my youth, and experiencing life in all its forms… I finished school and took care of my student loans, focused on my health, got into real estate, and traveled; I find it’s the perfect time to settle down a bit and start a new chapter. I would call this chapter: How can I reach financial freedom in 1 year without completely cutting myself out from the life I have built for myself?
What is financial freedom? It’s a goal that many of us strive for, but it can be difficult to know where to start with all the information we receive from left to right. The definition is quite simple, it is the moment when a person is sufficient wealthy to fulfill very basic needs, such as food, clothing and some, without working extremally heard. It’s time we get some stability and take ownership of our life. We will face a lot of challenges but it will be all worth it at the end!
With such a short time to achieve this goal of being financially free, we have to be very strategic about what we will focus on. Also, ultimately, I want to be happy and content with what I have and be able to share that with the people I hold dear to my heart. The following list is in no particular order, and you can pick and choose which habit you want to implement in your routine. You can even adapt it to your own personal goals and needs.
The 90/90/1 Rule
This will be the first thing I will implement to start the year on the right path. The idea behind it, explained by Robin Sharma, in the video below, is to focus the first 90 minutes of your day on 1 project for 90 days straight.
If you think about it, one hour and a half is really nothing, considering you have 24 hours in a day to solely work on your craft and get better. Everything in life needs consistency; it’s the only way to notice change and improvement and become the master of something, whatever it is.
During that hour and a half, shut down all your digital distractions, whether it’s your phone buzzing, your tv talking, or even the million tabs that are open on your browser right now. We are very addicted to technology (like the majority of the population), and it is often one of the reasons why we accomplish nothing during the day. It is time we stop being like everyone else and start thinking outside of the box.
Now, your project can be pretty much anything. You can grow a skill that will be useful to you in the future. You can learn a new language. You can deepen your knowledge of certain subjects. It’s the perfect time to start a side hustle. You can try a new hobby you never had time to do before. The possibilities are endless.
Reboot after the holidays
Something I did last year that I enjoyed and would do again is a no-spend challenge. The end of the year is full of spending (boxing day, Black Friday, and cyber Monday), and it’s not just about the holiday gifts. With everything discounted, you tend to go a bit overboard and purchase things you don’t need just because it’s on discount. The no-spend challenge will be perfect to get your spending habits under control.
It will teach you more about yourself and what you’re spending more on. It will also reduce your impulsivity.
More importantly, you will save a buck load of money that can be put to good use! You can pay off your debt quicker (perfect toward financial freedom), save for your next big purchase, or even allow yourself to go on an adventure.
Make a Digital decluttering
Enough with people influencing your life and making you desire things you don’t need. The information you consume over the internet has an impact on your life, so make sure everything your eyes see and brain analyzes has a purpose. Remove anything that harms your mind. If the news tends to put you down, remove it. If it’s influencers, remove it. Anything that doesn’t add to your life has to go!
Instead, replace them with business owners, coaches, and mentors. Find people you can talk to, exchange ideas with, and improve your skills with. Build a community with like-minded people and help each other grow!
Take advantage of your 9 to 5
Squeeze every possible opportunity out of your job.
Having a corporate job, it’s so easy to get sucked into the hustle mindset and overwork yourself. And as much as you might like your job and be loyal to it, remember that 95% of the time, it’s a one-way street.
I used to have jobs that would make me feel bad for taking my vacations or using my personal time off under the pretext that there was too much work to leave. Or work overtime without getting paid for it! This attitude should definitely stop. Use every benefit your 9 to 5 offers you. Use your vacations and your personal time off. Do not work extra if you’re not getting paid extra. If you have health benefits, take full advantage of them. You want your health to be at its best. Ask for flexible hours or work from home. Don’t be shy to ask for the promotion or the raise you deserve. Everything you gain from your 9 to 5 can be used toward becoming financially free. The extra time off, money or flexibility can be used to improve your craft and make more money if that is the path you want to pursue.
And remember, if your company will not compensate you, job-hopping is always a solution!
Don’t forget your mental health
Like I said at the beginning, as much as I want financial freedom and independence, I also want to feel good and enjoy myself. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that you have to break the bank! You can find affordable ways to take care of your mental health. Realistically, what’s the point of having all this freedom if you can’t even enjoy it in the end?
Don’t get sucked into the capitalistic world
We live in a fast paced environment, where we always need more cash, more resources to sustain a certain lifestyle. What I will be doing first thing this year and can be done at anytime, is to create a budget. What are your fixed expenses? Is there variable expenses? Are you planning on having some savings? Or even investments? Will you be using your checking bank account? Or your credit cards? You can simply create a cash flow chart on Excel so you can keep track of all your financial decisions and see how it impacts you and how much money you have left each month. The goal is to live below your means so that you can get to your goal a lot faster.
I read this article in Investopedia that gives more examples of habits you could try out. It looks like a step-by-step guide rather than general advice. It also shows you some reflexes you should have to develop long-term habits.
Let me know if this was of any help and if you have tried any of these tips! I would love to know!
Until next time,