Applying sound and sustainable strategies over time can help you make steady progress towards achieving financial independence.
Examine your situation and resist trends
Self-awareness is the first step, advises Helen. As every woman’s personality, priorities and circumstances are different, knowing yourself and your attitude towards your finances is critical.
When you know what’s important to you, you’ll be able to resist spending on trends just for the sake of it.
When Nadine first started work, she found herself spending a lot on fashion. She eventually came to the realisation that there was no need to “jump on the latest fashion bandwagon”. These days, she seeks out pieces that are fashionable, practical and comfortable instead, and advocates that “self-confidence is more attractive than the latest runway styles”.
Don’t delay and develop habits
“Start small but start now,” says Deidre. She recommends finding friends with whom to work towards goals and to keep each other updated and accountable. Setting deadlines has also helped her to take action.
Wanda suggests saving and investing every month, so these become habits that you don’t even have to think about over time.
When it comes to working towards financial independence, Letitia’s tip is to “Ask, read and talk about it!”
“Things like investing, stocks, etc. are new concepts to us all and it’s very easy not to want to understand or engage with your financial independence beyond your monthly paycheque. But we have the responsibility to ourselves, and our families, to understand enough to make good financial decisions,” she says.
Continuously engaging with financial concepts and strategies will help you to keep thinking about and progressing towards your goals.
Take a long-term view
How you invest will partly depend on where you are in life and the degree of risk you’re willing to take on board. Wanda’s recommendation is to invest with a long-term view.
“Have a balanced portfolio but you can be a bit more aggressive when you’re younger. As you age, invest in safer instruments and if possible, those that can give you a passive income,” she says.