Its July 4th, Independence Day in the United States of America! I decided that today is the most appropriate day for this short post on financial independence.
What does it mean to be financially independent?
Financial independence has a different meaning each person. To some people it may mean not having to worry about paying mortgage, bills, or putting food on the table. To others, it may mean not being at the mercy of a company who may lay you off just before retirement.
I would like all my readers to think about what it means to you personally, and what achieving it is worth.
To me being financially independent means that I do not need to worry about money. Money itself is not important, but I do understand that it is very necessary for sustaining life in the world we live today. Being financially independent means that I do not need to rely on the system, nor be burdened by it. It also means not having to work for a company because I need to in order to survive. But ultimately, it means having the freedom to do what I choose to each day (learning things I wish to learn, sharing knowledge, sharing and spending time with those I care about, improving my well being and the life of those around me, etc.). That to me is priceless, which is the reason I invest to become financially independent.
Money affords us the basics of food, shelter, and medicine. However, making enough money to sustain those basics until the end of one’s life is much harder today than it was decades ago. The cost of living has increased to a point where single working parents are no longer the norm, due to the financial hardships it would cause without two incomes. It is true that today’s system sustains more people, and provides more (especially to those in need). However, to live beyond that system without depending on it, and having it depend on the people has become much more difficult. People are now slaves to corporations, politicians, and to other people.
I’ll end this article with why Warren Buffett decided to start investing. I hope this article provokes some deep self-reflection and thought:
“It could make me independent. Then I could do what I wanted to do with my life. And the biggest thing I wanted to do was work for myself. I didn’t want other people directing me. The idea of doing what I wanted to do every day was important to me.”
That was after he visited New York’s stock exchange, at age 10. He was very young, but don’t forget back in the 1940’s people were much more mature at younger ages with much more responsibilities.
Make today, the day you decide that financial independence is worth achieving!
Start learning and gaining financial knowledge, to investing for yourself!
The Warren Buffett quote was from the following book by Alice Schroeder:
The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
It is a highly recommended book, not only for the interesting aspects on Buffett’s life, but also the financial wisdom from following his experiences.
Happy Independence Day America!
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