Personal Finance

Personal action is key to financial freedom

On my recent trip to Mombasa, I could not help but notice the friendliness and welcoming nature of our coastal brothers and sisters. I felt warm and safe, using my phone in nearly every corner of the street, as well us picking up the coastal Swahili accent.  This friendly culture has been at the root of the successful tourism investments that our country has seen in the last century.

In the same breath, the environment’s cry of neglect and dirt as you drive past the suburbs and backstreets as well as some main streets and beaches cannot be ignored, it’s the tell of our uncaring love for our environment as well as our inability to act to make our lives better. All our cities and towns, and especially those in the eyes of tourists should be cleaner or else it’s just a matter of time before tourists start shunning our beautiful destinations on account of environmental unfriendliness.

Dirt in an organization, be it a Bank, a Hotel, a destination like a park or beach is a sure sign of managements indolence, hence a very important marker of success.

Just like the environment, personal inertia, which can be described as the unwillingness to exert one’s mind and energy on a course is a key to failed investment dreams, failed exams, failed relationships etc. It starts at idea conception stage where your mind is able to generate ideas in response to opportunities as well as challenges.

The talk about investment that you attended last, you were extremely excited, you even scribbled notes and swore in your breath to implement the next day, but once you got home, you just fell back into your usual rat race and continued with life. Now the notes that you took look rough and dirty and you pick the papers and dump them into the waste bin, the time, money and effort that you took at that seminar completely gone down the drain and you are left in the same financial position as you were in before the meeting.

At planning stage, you require a lot of diligence and discipline to ensure that you cover everything that might hamper the success of your project, yet in many a case, just because you have the cash, or someone else is willing to put in the cash for you, you go on with the flow and come up with dubious or incomplete plans that cannot even survive the very first few months of operation and failure beckons you at this stage too.

Analysis paralysis where you enter into a continuous thinking loop where you are continuously looking at the scenarios and never reaching a conclusion or making that leap of faith to start operations is just another form of inertia. You feel you are not ready and you continuously analyze the situation until you realize, oops, other people have overtaken you and are now running the idea and the opportunity is lost.

Once in operation, you have no discipline to report to duty on time and serve your customers, you leave important things to employees who emulate your low pathetic standards and hence the business fails. As we have read before, by its very nature, the universe is created to fail. We humans are also created to fail by default, this can be illustrated by a school example where all students are taught to pass, no one is taught how to fail, yet a bigger percentage is usually in the fail category.  Everything’s default mode is failure, hence continuous effort to run it is required and it starts with the entrepreneur who must exert effort to ensure success.

Next time an idea jumps into your mind to create or change something for the better, remember to overcome inertia and “just do it”. Once you have started, you build momentum and before you know it, alas, the world has changed, and you are at the center of it.

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