Being broke sucks and I’ve been there (many times). So many of us are dead broke. We live pay cheque to pay cheque, have little or no savings and buy things we think we can pay for later.
This leaves us with no money which is needed to buy food, pay rent/a mortgage, send our kids to school and take a break once in a while.
Being broke sucks regardless of what all the “You don’t need money” advice says.
Money is definitely not everything, but you need a certain amount to live. Being broke is certainly not going to be sustainable. Being broke can teach you a hell of a lot though.
Here’s why most of us are dead broke:
One source of income.
If all you have is one source of income, it doesn’t take a lot of wind to blow over your sailboat of financial freedom.
Our global economy is changing and now more than ever, it’s possible to earn multiple streams of income.
“Diversifying the risk of your income through a few different methods is wise advice. Having one source of income could easily leave you dead broke”
What if the company you work for lays you off? What if you get sick and can’t work that job anymore?
These are not scenarios to be afraid of; they are scenarios to plan for so you can weather any storm that hits you.
The allure of shiny objects.
The need to own shiny objects because Instagram teases you all day with them is worse than ever.
All those shiny objects you’re being told to purchase or lured into buying through clever marketing, are not going to make you happy. Buying shiny objects will make you broke.
The money you waste on things that will bring you no long-term joy and can be put to much better use.
These somewhat insignificant purchases all add up. Add compounding growth, interest and dividends to the equation, and these purchases are costing you more than you think.
I’m not saying live with a total of ten objects, but I am saying to reign in your desire for material possessions you know deep down you don’t need.
Bombarded by ads.
They’re in your Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, streaming services — like a virus waiting to infect you.
All these ads are telling you to spend, spend, spend. This will only keep you broke.
See ads for what they are — a device used to take money from your wallet and place it in someone else’s.
The small decisions you make every day about money are shaping the big picture of your financial livelihood. Practice these habits instead:
- Saying no to endless opportunities to spend
- Indulging in buying things less (you’ll feel better for it)
- Saving a percentage of any income you receive (decide on the percentage in advance)
- Investing in assets rather than liabilities (Property, stocks, gold)
Get rich quick opportunities.
The temptation to blow money on cryptocurrency, property investing scams and experts who claim they can help you get rich in a short time, is hard to avoid. The best way to not be broke is to understand this:
“You’re not going to get rich quickly”
Making money ethically takes time and that’s completely fine. Choose proven investment classes instead of assets that fluctuate a huge amount in a single day. Trying to go from being broke to financially free in a short space of time burns so many people’s financial future.
Books from people such as The Barefoot Investor, Warren Buffet, Peter Lynch and Tony Robbins will give you real financial advice.
Advice that can be used to live nicely and have enjoyable family getaways without having to watch every dollar.
That’s how I learned — by buying a few twenty-dollar books :)
A focus on money rather than happiness.
How you think about money will determine a lot about whether you ever earn any and hold onto it. If you see money as a road to happiness, you’ll lose.
We’re all smart enough to know by now that you can’t buy happiness. Happiness is a state of mind and you can cultivate it without any resources.
You can see something as simplistic as a Bonsai Tree, as happiness if you choose too. Seeing money as happiness keeps us broke because it’s a false ideal.
We can never win that game, so we set ourselves up to lose and then wonder why we get pissed off and frustrated.
Jump off the hamster wheel and see money for what it truly is. Think about times you were the happiest and you’ll realize it was probably to do with your family, passions or goals you achieved.
As your value goes up, so does your spending.
Throughout my career, I’ve gained extra skills and been paid more because of it. I’ve also noticed that as I made more money, I began to spend more.
That’s why when we get that promotion, or our business starts to pay us a higher salary, our net-worth doesn’t increase.
Be conscious that as you make more money, you should increase your savings and investments to be at the same level.
Don’t just spend more and keep your assets at the same level.
What keeps us broke is the temptation to spend more because we suddenly started earning more money.
The death of credit.
Credit keeps us broke by making us think we can have something today and pay for it later.
If you don’t have money for it now (with the exception of a house) don’t buy it. Wait till you can afford it and then buy it. There are traps with all credit.
An event in the future could knock you flat on your face and having a mountain of debt only makes your situation worse.
Credit always comes with a fee or some amount of interest, so you end up paying more to have a purchase go through today.
I know you know this, but sometimes the best advice is what you’ve already been told.
Ignoring the credit trap will keep you broke and ensure hard times unless a change of thinking occurs.