This may sound absurd, but being a workaholic might cost you more financially than you think. In the long run, contrary to what people think. After all, when we’re busy, we have less time to spend money right? Wrong. Ponder these points, or rather hidden culprits, over.
#1 Spend in exchange of convenience
When we say convenience, it normally refers to saving time because more often than not, we are over scheduled. Or we are just plain lazy or unmotivated after a 12 hours work day. Does this sound familiar? Hiring a domestic maid to take care of the house chores, and eating out frequently instead of cooking at home. These things add up once you tabulate everything, although we might not realize it because we barely think (not easy to think hard when making a decision at the end of a long day) when paying for convenience costs.
The solution: Carefully plan if it justifies to spend the X amount of money for the time saved. Personally, I can concur that the time saved by paying RM 10 to the car wash center makes sense. Eating out for dinner every weekday is definitely NOT.
#2 Spend for rewarding thyself
This really compounds the problem if you don’t like what you are doing (your job), whether it is the job scope or your boss.
So what you do?
Your subconscious mind tells you – “I deserve a break and I need to reward myself for all the shitty work and people I have to endure daily!”
Activities that give instant gratification like shopping for holiday or clothes.
I got an ex-colleague who obviously hates her job. So, what you do when you hate your job? You browse AirAsia looking for the latest promo tickets. To Krabi – seems pretty affordable. Next month, maybe to Goldcoast. And then without you realizing it, this becomes a dangerous cycle and a habit you can’t break out from.
The solution: If you don’t like what you are doing, what makes you stay put? Unless there is commitment issues, you can “move” – you are not a tree. If you are not appreciated for what you do best or like to do, then someone or somewhere will appreciate you. Else, you might want to reflect – am I having the skill set that are in demand in the market? If not, time to upgrade or acquire some.
#3 Paying penalty fees
Have you ever been in a situation where you double park just for 5 min and you thought it will be fine (pun intended) because the nearest parking lot is just too damn far?
And bam, when you come back to your car, you are slapped with a traffic summon.
Sounds familiar? Exactly my point
That, or forgetting to pay overdue bills on time. Don’t do it especially on bank repayments because that will affect your CCRIS credit rating.
The solution: Don’t double park or park illegally, no matter how “lucky” you think you are because one day you will “kena” for sure. And set all bill payment to auto debit – no hassle. Use Google Calendar or some form of reminder.
#4 Inaction in money optimization
These inaction may come in the form of ostriches burying its head into the sand for an under-performing unit trust fund or loss-making shares. Or they could fail to use their EPF money to invest into higher yield investments, or neglecting to invest even any idle cash due to a demanding work schedule. Perhaps they have paid their mortgage loan with an inappropriate strategy, or it could be that they bought the wrong type of insurance or have been paying too high a sales charge on their investments. The list goes on and on.
Ask yourself this: Are you and/or your spouse guilty of these “small money” mistakes?
When it comes to personal finances, it is “no action” because many cannot wait for the positive outcome that takes months, even years.
None of these “mistakes” are in itself disastrous; however their combined and compounding effect will cost the average middle class Malaysian a staggering loss of RM1.5mil to RM3mil, thus robbing them of their financial freedom.
You may wonder how these mistakes get compounded into such a large amount. Example below:
Scenario 1: Invest RM 2,000 per month in a fixed deposit account for 20 years. At a rate of 3% interest per annum it should give you returns of RM656,603.
Scenario 2: Invest the amount at an average rate of return of 8% per annum, you would have gotten returns of RM1,178,040.
Compare the 2 scenarios above. Which would give you a better result?
The solution: Take proactive action, the best time to get into action is yesterday, the next best time is today to reap tangible results.
The thing is, the seeds of such financial blunders are planted years before their outcome. Most people have a tendency to make unnecessary mistakes (in the broad categories of either taking too much risk, or doing nothing to grow their wealth). The mistakes are often small and may not even look like mistakes at the time – many do not even realise that they are making them.
So there you have – what say you?