One of my readers recently said, “I’m tired of always worrying about rent, bills, etc.” Money stress is a common problem for many of us.
In the email, the reader talked more about her situation, which I obviously won’t share. But this situation is not unusual. I’ve been there in the past. Some of you might be there now.
“I’m a bit lost. What could I do?” She asked.
When I look back at my own journey, I focused on conquering my money fear first. If you want to see the evidence of how I’ve approached my career, simply look at the books I’ve published:
- Win Your Inner Battles in 2015: I wrote this because I was tired of always worrying. I shared how I got over my fear and started working towards my goals.
- Think Straight in 2017: I wrote this because I needed to be more practical about my life. I wanted to be in control of my thoughts. I wanted to live life on my own terms.
- Do It Today in 2018: I wrote this because I saw results in my career and wanted to achieve more in less time.
- What It Takes To Be Free in 2019: I wrote this because I knew I could be financially and emotionally free. I saw the results and I just had to be serious about freedom.
I’m not a journalist, consultant, thought leader, or motivational speaker. I don’t write because I’m employed to do so.
I’m a practitioner who writes because I feel obligated to share everything I’ve learned.
So you can see what I’ve been going through based on the books I’ve published.
My next one is tentatively called The Stoic Path to Wealth because it’s about how I finally managed to become a consistent stock market investor by applying Stoic philosophy.
A few things you can do now to address your money fear
The first step in overcoming money stress is NOT taking stock of your finances or reading personal finance books!
I can’t stress this point enough. So many people in the personal finance and investing world get this wrong.
Money stress is not a rational problem. It’s emotional.
You can’t take away all your fear by saving money or pursuing a degree. Those things sound rational but they will not make you feel any different.
Take it from the guy who obtained two degrees and diligently saved money for years.
Deep down, every grown-up has the fear of loss. We fear losing everything we have and not knowing what to do.
Fear of losing everything in life can be a debilitating emotion, one that stops us from taking risks and pursuing our dreams. It can make us feel overwhelmed, powerless, and even worthless.
However, it is possible to overcome this fear and take control of our lives. The first step is to become aware of your fear and understand why you are afraid. Identifying the things that cause you to panic and lose control will help you gain perspective on the situation.
Once you have brought your fears into the light, you will see that there’s always a way. It might not sound like much right now, but I guarantee that you will feel more confident if you start to address your fears.
Conquer the fear and then start working towards financial freedom
Conquering the fear of losing everything doesn’t happen overnight. It takes consistency and efficiency. And having one of the most important things that financially free people have.
You must become an owner so you’re not constantly chasing after money. But the owner of what? Here are a few ideas:
- Your own business: Start a business and create products/services that people are willing to pay for.
- Stocks: Slowly invest in stocks so you can build wealth over time.
- Real estate: Buy a rental property and earn money with the rent. Plus, you also build wealth through appreciation.
Ideally, you want to have all three. I started with investing in stocks, then started my own business, and later bought rental properties.
When you start with nothing, all of this sounds impossible. But it’s really doable. My own example shows that.
It’s important to conquer your fear, be dedicated, and have a plan.
Don’t try to make things up as you go. And certainly, avoid listening to people who haven’t accomplished anything themselves.
You want to become an owner of reliable assets. The last thing you want is to get involved in get-rich-quick schemes or opportunities that seem too good to be true.
I’ve been working at all this stuff since I was 17 years old when I bought my first stocks. And I started my first business 12 years ago. It takes time.
Sure, I could’ve learned a lot faster if I started taking courses and reading business books earlier. But hey, we didn’t have these types of articles and newsletters when I started.
Think in assets
Your goal is to acquire assets. Remember that skills are also assets. So when you invest in your own education, you’re also building assets.
Assets provide long-term security and stability. They help generate passive income, and they can appreciate in value over time.
Investing in assets also give you a sense of control over your finances. When unexpected events arise, you are better prepared than if you didn’t own assets at all.
Over time, you can create a secure future for yourself and your family – something many people struggle with in today’s economy.
Take the first step today by addressing your fear and then thinking about what areas you can invest in. Just make a plan! You don’t have to execute everything right now.
Simply make a plan and don’t let fear stop you from achieving your goals.