Get the Edge: Your Way to Financial Freedom
Good Morning!!! How are you all doing today? How was your weekend? Mines was pretty good. Especially Saturday. Ms. Royalty had a birthday party at a lounge celebrating her 40th. OMG. The woman looks GREAT, I mean absolutely FABULOUS for 40! She looks like she’s in her 30s. She makes 40 look effortless. The outfit she had on was sick! *High 5 Ms. Royalty* To the next 40 and beyond! Okay so I know the 30 day challenge is over but I didn’t share with you the remaining two topics of Tony’s cd. I promised I will so here is the second to last one. Let’s dive in. Do you have a savings account? What type of savings account do you have? Do you have a retirement plan? Do you have any type of investment portfolio (stocks, bonds, mutual funds)? I certainly don’t expect you to answer these questions to me but just questions to keep in mind as I delve in. I’ll share my answers with you. In the order asked: Yes; Regular plain savings account; No retirement plan. I froze my 401k this year. Money became way too tight; No type of investment portfolio. Way too scared to start one. Tony says that we deserve to master abundance. Why not be abundant financially when you give abundance emotionally and spiritually? He shared his initial road to success, falling off and back to success. He was sick and tired of being broke so he wrote down everything he wouldn’t settle for anymore and then wrote what he wanted. He said a line that I liked. When he became successful he would shower his friends with gifts and trips and they said to him that he was just into money now and he replied “no, I’m just not into poverty anymore.” I know there are people with much less than what I have but I’m not digging my level of poverty. I’m disturbed and I need to do something about it. However, Tony says that we can’t earn without adding value. “The only way to become wealthy is to add more value to other people’s life than anybody’s life is adding. It is the only way. If you don’t add value you will not sustain the wealth to maintain it. Your income is in direct proportion to your contribution.” Okay Tony, I’m broke now how do I contribute to become wealthy? I’m truly confused. I’m an inspiration to others and I know for a fact that I’ve been a really great influence in other people’s lives. Does this count? If I feel that a homeless person is being genuine about their homelessness I contribute (there are so MANY around in NY. I’ve been jipped before). Does that count? All that I’ve done have to count or do I need to do more? Should I be volunteering somewhere? Hmmmm that’s actually not a bad idea. Depends on where. I’m a sensitive soul. The angel intuitive describes me as being an empath. It’s good to know the word for it. I just thought I was weird. I don’t watch the news nor do I read the newspapers…at all. One article or news report will send me spiraling emotionally and mentally. I’m dead serious! It’s like I’m experiencing what’s going on with the individuals. Needless to say this is very draining to me. So volunteering at a soup kitchen will kill me so not an option. I’ll donate however I can but you won’t catch me there. To know that we are just one paycheck away from being homeless (unless you have 6 months’ rent and expenses in your account); Me being close to homeless already and the same for my mom and knowing that my dad in Jamaica go without eating at times. Just breaks my heart completely. Writing it hurts. What’s a deeper stab? When he calls and asks and maybe at that time I can’t give. Do you know how that feels? Oh my goodness! *shaking it off. Don’t want to cry* To volunteer at a place like a soup kitchen would just break my heart ten times over and tears will be falling in the soup. A thought just came to me. Maybe I can volunteer at like a reading and writing center? That hits home for me. Would this count? I plan once I get my busines going to volunteer and give back my knowledge too. I also give my knowledge away now. This blog is a perfect example. Why should my close friends be the only one to benefit from what I know? Also, once I can afford to I’m definitely donating to some type of rape charity or program. So, Tony are these the things you are talking about? Well he can’t answer me so I’m going to ask my therapist and friends and see what they think he means. If you have an ideas please comment, text, email or call. Reach out to me because I’m honestly confused. He shared that he got hungry because of his son. After his son was born he stayed at an income of five million a year. He was stuck and got hungry again and so he said he’ll feed every homeless person in his county. When he eats he knows there are eating too and the next year he made more. Okay, I get that. However, I don’t have $50 to spare much less $5mil. Come on Tony work with me here. Volunteering my time has to be the answer, right? I can dig that. Gotta be. See I told you I answer some of my questions when I write or talk to myself (yep I talk to myself and I answer myself…sometimes even aloud…not one thing wrong with that. Hmph). Okay, let’s recap. 1. Get disturbed. Make it a must. Workout a compelling future that makes it impossible to fail. 2. Get hungry. Stop blaming others. Set goals and make them a must and commit to making changes now. 3. Add value to people’s lives. Remember that, our income is in direct proportion to our contribution. Now let’s talk about what he refers to as the ‘The Power of Compounding.’ Taken directly from the workbook: Compounding occurs when you invest money and allow it to continuously reinvest itself. With this strategy, you’ll realize explosive growth beyond your wildest imagination. Examples: · In an 18-home golf game, if you bet just ten cents on the first hole and double your bet every hole thereafter, the last hole will be worth $13,107.20. No matter how little you start with you, must start now! If you wait until the third hole to begin, betting on fifteen holes instead of eighteen, the total comes to only $1,600. · Saving $150 per month ($5 a day) at a 15% annual return for 30 years yields $1,051,000. · Saving $250 per month in that same period of time produces $7.8 million. Statistics show you’re going to live a long time. What are you going to do when you get there? Handling your finances is critical, and compounding is the ticket, so start investing now. If you’re not willing to take a dime out of a dollar today, you won’t be any more likely to take a hundred thousand out of a million later. Okay, I hear you Tony. How do I start? Well he said that you must start with a minimum of 10% of your income. Invest it and reinvest it and compound it. If you’re like me who said, dude, I have bills and need every penny! He said, then pay yourself first. Have the bank automatically take it from your account. I completely 100% agree with this. I have a savings account just for moving out of NY and its set up to deduct automatically out of my paycheck. I do my budget based on the money that’s already deducted. The million dollar question is where to put the money you’ll be deducting? Answer: Stocks! It’s the fastest way to make money. *deep sigh* I just had a feeling he was going to say that. I have a fear of the stock marketing. I have a fear of investing period. I’m fine earning the money but a $1 lost is a stab. Don’t worry he put my fears aside with a plan that I totally dig. First he wanted to remind me that in 1987 when the market crashed that if the folks didn’t sell then they wouldn’t have lost anything because the market went right back up. Cool beans, didn’t know about the selling part. Taken from workbook: The Value of Stocks · Long term dependability: Since World War II, the best investment through time has been the stock market, delivering a 12% rate of compounded return for nearly 50 years. · Short term flexibility: buying and selling stocks is fast and easy. It’s much faster, for example, than selling a piece of real estate. *This is the part where my idea of investment changed* Sir John Templeton’s Strategy: “Three Bucket” Asset Allocation. Decide what percentage of your income to invest and allocate it into each of the following areas in a proportion that meets your needs and satisfies your risk tolerance. By determining your asset allocation in advance and sticking to your plan, you’ll avoid the temptation of spur-of the-moment decisions. 1. Security Bucket: This bucket is for low –risk investments such as fixed-income (treasury bills, corporate bonds, money market accounts) and equity (insurance policies, your home). The growth rate on these investments seems slow at first but compounds over time. What goes into this bucket should stay here-allow the profits to be reinvested. 2. Growth Bucket: This bucket is for higher-risk investments with more potential for growth, such as mutual funds, collectibles, real estate, and stocks. Reinvest one-third of the profits in your security bucket, one-third in your growth bucket, and one-third in your dream bucket. 3. Dream Bucket: This is the place to have some fun and save for the things you want in life. Whether it be a car, a yacht, a vacation home, or a sports team, this bucket lets you start building toward your dreams and making them come true. Tony, man, I totally dig this! See I thought that I needed to put my money all in one place and that NEVER sat well with me. After hearing this tape I asked a coworker and friends and they said forget the mutual account just invest in stocks. See, I knew it wasn’t just me with this mentality. Now, with this new tidbit of information from Sir Jon Templeton to Tony *singing. I can see clearly now the rain is gone. I can see all the obstacles in my way…* I can totally see the benefits on investing. I knew that putting my money in a CD account or just having it sit in a savings account won’t amount to anything. I knew investing is the best way but I couldn’t swallow that ‘invest all’ pill that I always heard. Now if I’m to take a percentage of my income that goes towards investing and then that figure is then separated into those three buckets then I’m more than willing to risk my money in the stock market because then I’ll have something to fall back on. Thank you Tony! Assignment: Step 1: Decide now you’re going to allocate your assets. I’m going to invest ___% of my income. I’m going to split my investments in this ratio (for example, 50/50 or 60/40). Security bucket: ___% Growth bucket: ___% Step 2: Make it a must for you. Write a paragraph or two about why you must be wealthy and what it will do for you, your family, your life. What will it give you? Who will you be? What will you do with your wealth? Being wealthy would allow me financial freedom to do all the things I want to do and then some. I know my dad wouldn’t want to live in America but I would certainly have him travel back and forth to take care of his medical needs. If he wishes I’ll buy a land and all the resources needed to build a home or just buy a home in Jamaica. It’s completely up to him. He’ll chillax and work if he chooses to. He’s 70 with prostate cancer and is diabetic so he should be chilling in a hammock in Negril. As for my mom I’ll buy her an island. No, I’m serious. The woman said she wants to be on her own island so she’ll get one. If not then she can get a house completely paid off of course. Whatever else she needs she got it. The same for both my step fathers. I don’t forget kindness so however I can help they will get it. Don’t have a current relationship with my brother (very hurt by this) and knowing him he would never ask and may not accept. However, I believe he has two children now and I’ll be sure they have a fund for their education. My sister and I don’t gree (JA term for not agreeing but it means more than just ‘agreeing.’ My fellow Caribbeaners will understand what I mean. It’s hard to explain otherwise) but I love her son and even though she hinders us from having a relationship I still love him and do anything and will continue to do anything for him…as long as he continues ot have manners and respect! I would say a college fund but he’s in college now. I guess I’ll pay the tuition so when he starts his career he has a financial clean slate. Now, for my friends that I love dearly and I consider family. Nattydread will be spoiled rotten. I mean completely spoiled. She won’t have to work a day in her life if she chooses to. That girl has been my boyfriend for over ten years (nope I didn’t mistype). BJD can get anything she pleases. The ones with children will all receive an account set up to be released to them at a certain age. Except for Harold. His child is still young so a college fund for him. Nikole will get her dream house with the pool. This is if she doesn’t get this before I do. J Ms. Royalty will get what her heart desires. As for me. I just want to travel. I want to see the world. You don’t understand, or maybe you do but my mind and heart soars when I think about travelling. To get a taste of other people’s cultures. I mean that literally and metaphorically. To enjoy the sceneries to learn what that country have to offer. Ah man my heart is racing just thinking about it. It’s not only about the enjoyment but also to give back. I get to shower with clean water every day and I’m so thankful for that, but others should have the same opportunity. I have an education, and all these other ‘perks’ and I want others who don’t have to have. It’s not just about writing a check. I’ll be hands on with it. I want to make a difference however big or small with my wealth and I know I will. Ummm but first I’m paying off these bills. I’m sick of Mr. Visa and Mrs. Mastercard and their other relatives. Now after all this, remembering what Tony said which is to never leave a scene of a decision without taking some action, I went to the bank to get some info. Very disappointed. To start a mutual fund or any of those types of investment categories you need a minimum of $1000. There goes that plan. I was really hoping that I could start with the ten percent of my income like he mentioned. *cough cough* It’s nowhere near $1000 Tony! I’ll definitely keep this at the front of my mind when things become better. I’m also going to look into what a credit union will have to say. I’ve blabbed enough. I’m sure you’ve learned a thing or two. Lattas! Stay Blessed!