There is no one idea that can be used on the pathway to financial independence. It is a combination of different strategies that should be used in order to create the conditions that would ultimately lead to that state. Yes, financial independence is a state of mind in a big way, however, it is wise to set certain processes in motion early, so that the necessary conditions can exist later on in your life. You will then have the freedom and flexibility to do certain things that are truly important to you.
What does it mean to be a steward?
Since we all work and as a result generate income, it is important that we respect ourselves enough and be stewards of our assets. The income we generate represents our lifetime of studying, working, parents working and also the work of society as well. Therefore we should really be fiscally responsible and be the stewards of everything that we own; our bodies, our material objects and of course, our financial assets. To be a steward then means to consider your life and what you want to achieve, and take the necessary steps to have them manifest. It is the act of being responsible and preparing for the inherent risks of life and those that depend on you. It is also important to consider society as a whole; it is because of society that we are able to work and generate income. Therefore, it is our responsibility to give back in any way we can; it could be time, money, ideas or any other valuable contributions we can make to the world.
I read this great excerpt by a Senior Editor Money Magazine and was inspired to write this short piece. This is the excerpt from an article about how much should one save to be financially responsible:
“Well, as much as I’d like to be able to tell you to save 10%, 15% or whatever and you’ll be fine, it’s impossible for me to do that without knowing a whole lot more about you. The percentage of income that’s appropriate for you will depend on your income, age, the amount of money you’ve already saved, your employment prospects and, most important, how much you’re willing to forego immediate gratification for current and future financial security.”
What stood out to me was the last part of the final sentence; “how much you’re willing to forego immediate gratification for current and future financial security.” Fortunately, I do live a relatively simplistic lifestyle, yes, even in New York City, but I do have big dreams that I know will be realized in due time. In that sense, it is where I see myself in the future that is dictating my choices today.
Be a financial steward; take care of your assets.