This blog is about financial concepts and money issues impacting our financial well being.
It is also about getting yourself educated financially so that we keep more of the money we make and in parallel, grow our accumulated money with manageable risk. That’s why KCLau and I launched REITMethod to help our readers achieve these goals.
But sometimes, when money is concerned, we often lose track of the purpose why we work so hard. Because more money often comes with that job promotion/business opportunity and consequently, bigger paycheck or profit. For many, success is measured in the ability to afford the luxuries in life -a bigger house for our family, sending children for overseas education and foreign land vacation.
It’s not wrong, it’s just that when we got ourselves into (bad) debt in order to provide material things for our family, metaphorically speaking, it is similar to digging our own financial grave – slowly but surely.
And then there’s Warren Buffett. He will always serve as an inspiration. He is not a common man. Most of us, if not all, would never be as rich as him. The good news is, most of us never need to. The man who invests like a girl started buying his first stocks when he was 11, and he said it was too late. Now beat that.
The common man in the street needs an action plan which is scalable and more realistic. We need to hear real stories from real people whom we can relate to – not from a hedge fund manager or a speculative trader who made astronomical returns on his stock for the past 3 years because most of us are never going to experience these extraordinary situations.
So how much money is enough, really? Should you be engrossed in making money till the day you kick the bucket? What is wealth definition for you? And what are you going to do with the money you have, at the end of the day?
Is there an easy answer to these questions?
In my quest to answer this question, I want to share my experience in knowing these 3 individuals in person.
A middle age international school English teacher in Singapore, who lead an extremely frugal lifestyle in his twenties and early thirties, abhors debt, invested diligently and most importantly, getting himself financially educated.
Doing nothing by having enough money is not the ultimate goal. It never stops there.
It’s the things that come with with having enough money that brings joy to his life. One of it being, a peace of mind, knowing that you are in control of what you want to do. It’s absolutely not about having material things. Well, except for the weekly massages.
In his own words, on being financially independent –
Right now I am just having so much fun just doing the job that I do. I absolutely love it. And I’ll do that as long as I enjoy it. Here’s the beauty of being financially independent, which I am – I have that option. The moment the job doesn’t become fun, I move on. I can move on to do another job, I can move on to do volunteer work, I can move on a while to travel the world. It’s great just the options that it actually gives me.
In his own words, on helping the underprivileged with his wealth-
…and I was able to amass my wealth. I ended up with, really more money than I need, and the word here is, NEED. And I was able to look around and see that, there are people in this world who really could use some help. And I am not talking about giving people money and actually weakening because that really is what ended up happening. But give people money so that they could learn to read and write, that strengthens them. To give an organization money that would build wells for freshwater …everybody in this world has a right to freshwater well.
Full interview over here – The Millionaire Teacher’s Mentor – the Rich Mechanic (Podcast Interview#4)
KCLau, founder of Malaysia’s top personal finance and money tips blog, a friend, partner and mentor – never had a job but is successful in his own terms.
At the time of this post, KC just came back from his cruise vacation to Mexico, and he has been doing the hula hoops at Hawaii earlier this year. He is currently residing in the States with his wife and son, while enjoying the freedom working on his diversified business remotely – in fact, anywhere in the world he wishes to.
He really preaches what he wrote here on taking mini retirements every now and then – Why Not You Retire Now?
Also an accomplished musician, he pursues his passion, works on his own schedule and engineers his own projects while spending maximum quality time with his beloved family.
I doubt he ever feel the need to yell at or escalate anyone to get any work done. Certainly good for the blood pressure.
And if you are already a follower of KC Lau Money Tips Facebook Page, he recently tweeted something along this line –
Money frees me from doing things I don’t like. Since I don’t like doing a lot of things, money comes in handy.
That being said, I actually do enjoy more writing this article more than solving engineering problems back in the office. Hah!
Goh Yen Chiew
Yen Chiew is a friend and ex-colleague of mine. Her story is about how the family coped with having lost her father just 2 months after her very own wedding, how the family supported each other in the seemingly eternal period of grieving and the family togetherness in supporting her journey in expecting her first bundle of joy.
Her published articles in TheStar Online is so touching that I cannot do justice to it in a brief summary here. You got to read these.
“Losing a loved on is like losing a part of yourself…We cried for months and found ourselves broken within.”
I don’t believe we dwell on losing money in our investment portfolio as much as we lose our loved ones. All the money in the world means nothing without our family.
Hence, My Simplified Answer to the question today is:
So that we have the freedom of time to pursue our true passion and purpose while leading a fulfilling life with our loved ones without having to worry about sustenance; plus helping the needy with our additional resources whenever possible.
How about you? What is your one sentence answer? Tell me and share it with others.