Rose Ellah Ngari, is a lawyer and investment consultant. She speaks about women and finance and moving towards financial freedom.
Is it possible for a woman to achieve financial freedom?
Let’s appreciate the fact that women invest more than men. They are also better at reimbursing money they have borrowed because they don’t want a bad name.
However, we are more risk averse as women when it comes to our investment. When investing we try as much as possible to incorporate everybody else who is in our lives.
As an individual, as a woman investor who is single, you have everything planned for the future. Then at some point you realise you have to get married.
Then children come…
At this point you start compromising who you are so that you can accommodate the other person. Then the children come to play, perhaps, and now everything you do in your life has to be a balance between your career, your investments, your womanhood, who you are to your family and friends…everything.
You forget who you are as a woman. Remember this man you married is someone you are investing in to make them better.
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That is why sometimes you hear women saying ‘and the way I build him up’ yet you forgot about yourself.
What does a woman need to do at that point?
You need to keep on doing what you were doing when you were single. Keep building yourself and your dreams. Women find themselves in debt because we want to fit in with the standards.
It is good for one to understand where they are financially, yourself and your family. Understand the kind of risks you can make financially and see if they fit into the bigger picture, which is financial freedom.
Can one attain financial freedom when still in employment?
Yes, there are about seven ways of attaining income include entrepreneurship, and nobody should ever tell you that entrepreneurship is the ‘it’.
While in employment, know your expenses versus what you are earning. Ask yourself if you can live within your means because the ultimate goal in financial freedom is you living within your means.
Understand your income, your expenditure, and reduce your debt. Make the money you are making work for you so that whatever you could be making on the extra, you can save.
It is good to save first before starting to make your expenditures. Ten per cent of what you earn should be put into an account that makes you interest or income.
Is it possible to striking a balance between employment and side hustle?
You first need to strike a balance between everything as this can take a toll on your mental health. Balancing your time between employment and side hustles needs to be well thought of.
For the side hustles you can even employ somebody to work for you or you can even sell the business online. There are some sacrifices that have to be made, mostly time.
Is your self-worth equivalent to your net worth?
Yes and no! Some of us have larger than life personalities but then, we live probably way beyond what we have. Having a positive self-worth is a very important thing.
You know that when your income is bigger than your liabilities then you have a positive income all through. With that, you can achieve many other things in life. This improves your self-worth.
Let’s talk net worth and networks…
That is social capital. Everything marries into your network. As you keep on with your career, ensure that you are keeping a very good network and cut off people you do not need. One also needs good mentors that can guide them and lift them up.