Many Nigerians who had a pseudo-confidence in their financial stability, were rocked by the storms of the economic hardship that followed the COVID-19 pandemic. Some did not survive it, while those who did, now seek ways to be better financially equipped for future eventualities. It’s ten (10) months since the COVID-19 outbreak was officially declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) on March 11th, 2020. With the full enormity of the pandemic in mind, we cannot come out of this without noting its attendant life lessons. Interestingly, some of those lessons correlate with principles that can enhance your personal finance, on your journey to financial freedom. Financial freedom does not happen overnight, as it results from self-discipline and good money habits practiced consistently over time. To help you on your journey, I have come up with the 4C’s. To achieve financial success, you must be: 1. Creative – Find creative ways to earn more money. Having more than one source of income is a good way to increase your financial security.
I’m sure the people who lost their jobs or took a pay cut during the pandemic will agree with me. 2. Conservative – Be conservative with your expenses, and make sure to spend less than you earn. You can actually save more if you stick to a budget. It is okay to occasionally reward yourself, and enjoy the finer things of life. But that should also be on a budget. 3. Consistent – Form the habit of saving and investing a part of your income. As far as savings go, you need to have at least 3 months’ worth of living expenses, stashed away in liquid assets – Emergency funding, to cushion the impact of job loss, unplanned medical expenses, and other emergencies. It also applies to small businesses – many SMEs without any financial buffer felt the impact of the lockdown from Day 1. Investing, on the other hand, is the only way you can grow your money. You should take it seriously; develop the right mindset, become financially intelligent, and seek expert advice before taking a step. 4. Careful – Be careful who you listen to. Not every investment advice is good for you, and you should do your due diligence before releasing your money.