There are different ways to measure where you are on your journey to Financial Freedom and Independence. You could measure it based on how much money you actually have in investments or by your net worth. I would call that the technical way to measure your journey. There is also another way to measure it, which partly combines the technical way but mostly involves your habits and mindset. I am of the opinion that while how much money you have is important, it is equally or more important to have the right financial habits and mindset to have long-term financial success.
I have grouped where you can be on your financial journey into three categories or zones:
- The “Just Starting” Zone
If you are in the Just Starting Zone, the first and most important step is to acknowledge your current financial state and come to terms with how you got there. This is the where you may experience the most drastic change. It’s like a blind person seeing for the first time. You will understand that the way you once thought about and handled money was not ideal and start the process of turning your financial situation around.
- The “On Your Way” Zone
Now that you are enlightened, you have a sense of what you want and where you want to be. It’s in the On Your Way Zone that you need to really start putting in the work to make sure that these new-found financial habits stick. In this stage there will be a lot of small wins but there may also be setbacks as you are still trying to reprogram your emotional and mental spending habits.
- The “Almost There/Home Stretch” Zone
The amount of time you can spend in each section can vary. Sometimes the Almost There/Home Stretch zone can be the longest, since by then you should have adapted strong and consistent financial habits but may not have accumulated the amount of money you need to be considered financially independent.
Below is an infographic on the different stages/zones of the Financial Journey. See which one has the most statements that apply to you. It is also important to point out that one never just reaches the end of the journey and stops. Adapting and sticking to good financial habits have to continue even after you reach the financial independence stage so you can remain there.
So, where are you on your financial journey? Please comment below and share.