To be financially independent – a dream of many people. Often, it is precisely this desire that leads to the decision to become self-employed. The goal should be to be able to work independently of time and place and also to no longer have to depend on one’s work at some point, but many never achieve this state. We would therefore like to explain everything you need to know about financial independence and give you seven tips on how to achieve financial freedom.
What does financial independence mean?
First of all, financial independence can mean different things to different people. It depends on how exactly you want to live and how expensive your lifestyle is. Theoretically, you are financially independent when you are no longer dependent on your job and generate enough money through passive income. For many, achieving complete financial freedom means being able to afford any purchase – no matter how expensive. Depending on your standard of living, financial freedom occurs at different times.
Anyone can decide to become financially independent. And that’s even if you start from virtually zero: whether you’re in debt, dependent on parents or partners, or stuck in a 9-to-5 job. There are different strategies to reach the desired independence. Depending on your goal and intention, there are in turn different measures to actually achieve that goal. There is no ultimate path here, only your path. And in order to follow this path, we would like to give you eight helpful tips.
8 Tips for Financial Independence
The following tips should help you to develop your own plan – with the goal of financial independence. Whether one or the other strategy suits you, you can judge best yourself. However, we especially recommend tip 8!
TIP 1: ANALYZE YOUR CURRENT SITUATION
First of all, you should definitely get an overview of your current situation. How are your finances? Do you have any debts and how high are they? How much do you spend on certain things each month? How much money do you have left over in the end? These questions are necessary to understand where exactly you stand right now. Ideally, you’ll be able to see where you can cut corners, so that a plan can be developed.
TIP 2: SET YOUR GOALS
Plans always include goals. Therefore, you should think about exactly what you want to achieve. What exactly do you want your personal financial independence to look like? How much money do you need to have in order to finance your standard of living? Do you want to continue working or just live off your reserves? Do you need to finance only yourself or possibly a family as well? The goals you formulate can be quite individual and should, above all, be based on your wishes.
TIP 3: EARN MONEY
Many people see money as something negative. Not having much money means that you are doing badly. Having a lot of money can also be a burden. Either way, you should work on your mindset towards money. It is a tool that you can use to realize your personal wants, needs and goals. So you should earn money to get to financial independence – or at least to increase your income first. If you don’t have a job, find the right employer. If you have found one, then negotiate your salary skillfully. If you have been working for years, try to get a raise.
TIP 4: TRACK YOUR EXPENSES
An often underestimated tip is tracking expenses. Sure, you can’t make big gains by keeping track of expenses. But you can identify unnecessary expenses and stop them immediately. The nuts and bolts of a financial plan is to keep track of all money flows, and at the same time, always look at what’s left at the end of the month.
TIP 5: SAVE, SAVE, SAVE
If you notice by tracking your income and expenses that you have enough wiggle room to set aside a certain amount each month, do so. Even if you don’t feel you have a buffer, consider stopping an expense or two and saving that amount instead. Save, save, save may sound boring and not really promising, but it can often be one of the first important steps towards financial independence.
TIP 6: BUILD UP ADDITIONAL SOURCES OF INCOME
If you have a main job – whether self-employed or not – you should definitely generate passive income. An additional income is a good source of income, which ideally also generates a lucrative profit without much effort on your part. Of course, such an additional income does not just flutter in. Often people forget to mention that you have to invest time and work beforehand. But once established, a second leg can do a lot. You could, for example, write and sell books or e-books or rent out your own real estate. There are many possibilities. So think about what you can do to generate passive income.
TIP 7: INVEST
What you have saved and don’t need for now, you can invest perfectly. Here, too, there are different possibilities, such as stocks, ETF funds and bonds. Keep in mind that investing should always be long-term oriented. And also the choice of the right investment strategy you should consider well. Of course, you can learn about the subject yourself or you can plan your strategy together with experts in the field.
TIP 8: START AN ONLINE BUSINESS
Many people are reluctant to take the step into self-employment. However, this step does not have to bring about any major changes. For example, if you have a blog that you regularly fill with content and that is also gaining reach, you can start an affiliate business – and do it on the side. Let’s assume you have a blog or a social media account and write and inform about wines there. Then wine merchants can approach you so that their product is also tested and recommended on your blog. Via a cleverly used link to the sales page of the respective wine producer, your readers or followers can also buy this wine directly. For each wine sold, you then receive a commission. And this strategy can be implemented just as well with all other topics.
Conclusion: Financial independence
The most important of the lessons about financial independence is that it can look different for everyone and is achieved through different paths. No matter where you start and what strategies you use, they need to fit your goals, your lifestyle and your life path.