Disclaimer: this is not advice. This is information only.

If you are like me, you are very interested in investing. You might be thinking about it, or you might even be part-time investor. If you’ve managed to work hard to becoming a full-time investor, I can almost guarantee you’re NOT reading this post. This post is my attempt at nudging people towards investing.

It’s my belief that anything is possible if you work hard enough for it. One of my aims with duffmoney content is to help as many people as possible with their personal finance and investing. I’m going to become financially free within the next 6 years and in the process, I’m going to become a full-time investor.

The caveat is that it’s not going to be easy. It wasn’t easy when inflation was at around 2%. And it 100% isn’t easy, with official inflation figures of around 7%. The actual inflation figures are probably somewhere between 15 and 20%.

There will be many people on the bread line who are literally struggling to put food on the table. This isn’t help with energy prices trebling and many other goods and services going up in cost. My heart goes out to these people! Some people have been born into sever poverty and haven’t got a chance. But if they scrap and fight and work hard, I think anything is possible for anyone.

This isn’t me being dismissive of anyone’s situation. I’m just trying to say that with a strong, open mindset, anything can be achieved. And if you are someone who is struggling, I want to try and convince you to work towards becoming an investor.

In late 2018, I made a decision to change my financial situation. I was sick of being bad at personal finance and I was sick of many questionable investing decisions. I decided to become financially literate and by 2029, I believe that it will have paid dividends. I set myself a target at the start of 2019, to be financially independent within 10 years.

I think that if you fully understand money and investing, you have a fighting chance at financial independence and financial freedom. Don’t chase quick easy money because from my experience, it just leads to stress and anxiety.

First things First

Before you even think about investing, you must get the fundamentals right. You need spare money at the end of the month, or the start of the month (depending on the way you do things) to invest. You have to spend less money than you make each month. There is no getting away from it!

Spend less than you earn and invest the rest.

If you have no spare money or worse, are going further into debt each month, things have to change. Again, I’m not saying it’s easy. It’s going to be very very hard. But it’s definitely worth putting 100% effort into getting to a point where you can invest.

In my first book, FI Money: Learn the hard way, teach the easy way , I talk about a former colleague. A colleague, who worked his ass off until he was in his mid-60s to achieve his dream retirement. See below:

Struggling to earn a living as a contractor, I was working most weekends just to bump my wages up. The man I was working with at the time was a lovely man named Frank who was excellent at his job and had been a contractor all his life. He was 64 and 12 months from retiring.

On one particularly cold morning (-8 degrees Celsius) we were working at the top of the module (Gas module for offshore) outside. This was a Sunday and was the last place I wanted to be. We were both working all the hours God sent and were trying our best to keep our spirits up. Due to the hours, we were working and the fact that we worked in heavy industry, you could say we were Industrial maniacs. This is a common name given to workers who work every hour they can.

This life and this situation was bad enough for a 25 year old (me) but I really did not like to see old Frank struggling away at his age. It would be worth it for old Frank as his big plan was to take his wife of 45 years to their villa in Spain (a villa he had proudly told me that was just about paid off). I decided on that cold Sunday morning that I had to do something different, I refused to be working all the hours into my 50s and 60s.

To make matters worse for old Frank, things didn’t pan out as he was hoping. He did get to retire at 65 but he didn’t get to retire in the sunset with his wife. Sadly, his wife had a massive stroke and he became her full time carer in England. His dreams were shattered. Thinking of him happily practicing his Spanish on me at work almost brings a tear to my eye. I often think of old Frank and his dream of a happy retirement.

Getting on top of your personal finances and investing ASAP, will help you avoid poor Frank’s broken retirement dream. At least consider putting the work in with your personal finances and investing.

But how do you get spare money to invest?

There are only two ways that I can think of. One, is to find a way to reduce your spending and invest the difference. Two, is to maintain your spending habits and find a way to increase your income. Then invest the additional income.

It’s probably going to be painful but again worth it so you can work towards becoming an investor.

Looking at the two options, I’ve been trying both. I’ve been trying to reduce my spending over the last few months. And I’ve started to work hard at my job so that I can earn more income.

The reduced spending has really been going on for the last 6 months. See below for a little list of me reducing costs pcm:

  1. Remove the daily starbucks – £15 per week saving
  2. Remove sky tv – £100 per month saving
  3. Remove old subscriptions – £45 per month saving
  4. Remove one takeaway – £100 per month saving
  5. Shop around at places like ALDI and LIDDLE – approx. £100 per month saving

This isn’t an extensive list and I have made some other savings along the way. But even from the above, that’s £405 pcm saved. If I invest that money, long-term it will make a massive difference to my financial future.

Work wise I’ve been trying to up my game to get prepared for potential management positions going forward. If I’m able to do it over the next few years, I plan to invest any additional income earned.

You could do something similar to me, or you could something totally different. Try and think outside the box and find a way to get the spare money you need to invest. Like getting an extra job on the weekend. That job could be in the crypto space. This is something I’m open to as I’m wanting to continue learning about what I see as the future of money, and the future of business. In fact, the future of everything we do will be digital in some form or another in my opinion.

Ignore the noise

Ignore the noise if possible. I’m like everyone else I suppose in that I get affected by whats going on. Like COVID, inflation, the war in Ukraine, the global economic war, the price of BTC, who’s top of the premier league or whatever it is you are focused on.

In my opinion, it’s important to try and ignore the noise as much as possible. You could sit and watch the news 24/7 but it won’t do you any good. It’ll just make you miserable and anxious.

Work hard on your own situation. Head down, ass up. Push hard towards becoming an investor. Then once you’re there, push hard towards becoming a full-time investor. And be a good person and be a positive influence on the people around you. I believe there is more good than bad in this life (much more) and we can all do our bit.

I think we should all help each other. There is enough shit and enough negativity in this world without us being shitty to each other. Even something small like smiling at a stranger might just change their day for the better.

I’m going off on a tangent, but the main point is that I want you to be an investor. I want you to be a happy investor that makes a positive influence on the world! Have a good week and let me know how you intend to push hard towards becoming an investor. Or if you are a part-time investor, how you intend to become a full-time investor.

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