You must have been hearing the words financial security, financial freedom, and financial independence since the day you first became aware about the importance of managing and growing money. But you wonder if they just mean the same.
People involved in the field of financial planning or business may have different views and definitions of these three interesting words but as someone who sought and have been seeking to achieve those three, let me give you my personal definition and illustration of each.
Are You Seeking Financial Security?
Financial security is the perception that money will stay indefinitely to provide good living standards from a current income stream. However, this definition is not an assurance that you are enjoying this source of money.
If your objective is to seek (false) financial security, then all you need is any of the following:
1) A relatively high-paying “permanent” job – Most OFW’s believe that they are financially secure because of the money they are currently earning from working abroad. Personally, no job overseas is permanent if you are working on a renewable contract. And for those who are earning a quite good handsome sum from local employment, this is financial security. I hope your company stays forever.
2) A monthly pension – Apparently, a lot of our senior citizens rely on their monthly pensions and for them these are enough to keep them living “comfortably” up to the twilight years of their lives. A sadder note though is that most young people still carry this “pensyonado” mentality and only looks at what they are going to get from their company or the government upon reaching their retirement age.
3) Lottery or gambling winnings – I also personally know some people who rely on their winnings in sabong (cockfighting), lotto, jueteng, other forms of sugal (gambling) thinking that money from these can last a lifetime.
4) A wealthy benefactor – It’s another sad fact that there are a growing number of impoverished Filipino women looking for poreners and rich DOM’s just to secure their and their family’s finances. I need not say more. I personally know (again) some who will do anything just to get that financial security from rich men, dirty or not.
5) Migrating to Canada, US of A, Australia, New Zealand, and European countries – Not a few relatives and friends still believe that just stepping on the ground of these nations will keep them secured financially just because they know other relatives and friends who earned well for “being there”.
Financial security does not mean that you have paid all your debts. It simply means that you have a perceived “permanent” source of income to buy your wants and needs. The bad spending habits may still be there.
Being financially secured is not a bad objective but that should not be your ultimate goal. Financial security should just be your starting point towards achieving the next two.
Are You Seeking Financial Freedom?
Being financially free simply means you’ve eradicated your debts and have set up a financial plan to protect your money and your income stream. You still struggle and dream to achieve financial independence but you are somehow living comfortably at present. It also means not borrowing again, as much as possible.
When you have financial freedom, you can do the things that you love to do without compromising your cash flow.
But just like financial security, financial freedom isn’t forever as well. If you lost your job or business, all your savings and investments could be wiped out in a limited period unless you’ll be able to find a new source of income and cash flow to sustain your living up to a certain number of years.
Seek Financial Independence!
Being financially independent means you are no longer working to make money. Financial independence means it is now your money that is working for you.
You don’t need to find a new job that you don’t like doing just to earn. You are now running your own businesses based on your core strengths and what you really love doing. You also have many sources of passive income that even if you lose any of your business or passive income stream, you will still be able to rebuild your wealth and make even more.
Financial independence rests on skills and knowledge to make money and remake money without any worries.
Everyone should not be content in becoming financially free. Everyone should aim to become financially independent and build more wealth to help more people and make this world the best planet in the Universe to live in.
Being financially independent is enjoying life in love and service to the fullest!
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