Financial freedom is probably near the top of every person’s wish list. No one wants to spend his entire life working a job he doesn’t like simply because he needed the money. However, despite the unanimous opinion that this type of freedom is something to be sought after, majority of the people living today are not working towards it – either because they don’t know how, or because they don’t think it is feasible in their own lives.
But financial independence is always a possibility to those who understand the process of wealth creation. The formula is simple: earn more than you spend, and save the rest for future investments that may lead to passive income. This simple formula is easier said than done though. There are plenty of obstacles that may hinder you from reaching your goals. If you want to be wealthy you have to know what these obstacles are and you have to find ways to avoid them. Here are a few obstacles that you’d best avoid:
The most destructive force to your financial health is bad debt. Many people have lost their homes and other property to bad financial decisions that involve taking on large debt. The process of wealth creation can’t begin as long as you have debts. It’s just not possible. The first thing you have to do, before you even dream of financial freedom, is to get out of debt as soon as possible. The longer you stay in debt, the farther you will be from your dream. Debt is a cancer to your financial well-being, and similar to a medical illness, prevention is the best cure – just don’t get into debt. Clamp down on your expenses; take a second job; cut up your credit cards; do what you have to do in order to avoid debt.
Advertisements everywhere will try to convince you that you deserve to stay at the most expensive hotels, drink the best champagne and wear the most expensive jewelry. Don’t be silly. The only people who “deserve” such extravagance are those who can afford to throw money away because of the ridiculous wealth they’ve built. Wealth creation begins with discipline. You have to be able to delay gratification. Every day you will have to choose long-term and permanent financial freedom over transient pleasures. Only then will you have a shot at financial independence.
3. Saving Money for Its Own Sake
Have you ever met a person who became wealthy just by saving all his money in a bank? Great entrepreneurs save money in order to be able to afford ventures that make money. The process of wealth creation is supposed to create wealth, not keep wealth in a bank. You can achieve financial freedom by turning your money into assets that can serve a future purpose. The value of money itself decreases over time. You have to turn that money into an investment that increases in value, like real estate in a developing area or stocks of a rising company.
Vices are not only expensive; they’re also bad for your health. Let’s say you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day and each pack costs $5. In a year, you’d have spent $1825. In 20 years, you’d have spent $36,500, not including the medicine you would have spent on the ill effects of such a vice. That is money that every single person who doesn’t smoke saves just by not being involved in one vice. Just imagine how much you would save if you were able to eliminate all your vices. Financial freedom is achieved easier by people free from such expenses.
5. “Get Rich Quick” Schemes
Wealth creation is a long process. It’s not just a matter of “earning” a lot of money. It’s also about developing the right values over that period. It’s about learning through experience. It’s about overcoming obstacles. People who like short-cuts may hit the jackpot and earn big, but chances are, they’ll lose the wealth they gained just as quickly. Even worse, their eagerness to “get rich quick” might make them vulnerable to swindlers. If you encounter a deal that sounds too good to be true, chances are, it is. Stay away from “get rich quick” schemes.
Wealth creation is a process that takes time. Don’t rush through it. Learn to love the process. Cherish every experience. The path to financial freedom is one of the most exciting journeys you’ll be making in your lifetime. Try to recall your high school or your college experience. It may seem like a long time while you’re there, but as soon as it’s over, you can only hope to do it again. One day you’ll be looking back on this process with joy and appreciate every setback that taught you a lesson, every deal that built a business relationship, and every dollar earned honestly. Enjoy the process and you’ll build great wealth in no time at all.