- Antoine de Saint-Exupery, a Frenchman
- In French – Tout objectif sans plan n’est qu’un souhait
Learning a language can be a thrilling experience, it brings with it, it’s lifestyle, cuisine, history, and culture, which is completely different from where we are to be discovered!
While learning French, one discovery led to another, and it so happened that I fell deeply in love with the French art and immersed myself in the culture for seven long years! Through my expertise, I even got the opportunity to teach this language to young adults in a college.
But alas, there are only so many things you can learn from a distance! To fully experience the culture, I needed to be there in the country, amongst the people. Last December, an opportunity came my way. It allowed me to stay in France for seven long months. This would open up a plethora of opportunities for me! But opportunities often come with a cost. Seven months would mean, staying away from family in a distant land, figuring out solutions to problems all alone, and above all, financial independence.
In a parallel universe where life’s perfect and money is abundant, one might not need to plan out. However, the reality is different. Being raised in a middle-class family, every small decision needs to be far-sighted and while the application process took 6 months for me, in my head, the detailed plan started 2 years ago. While we all know emotional independence does not come overnight, it takes years of practice, financial independence too takes time. And it definitely wasn’t my forte. A young adult is likely to spend 70% of their income and save whatever is left. So how could I turn wheels within a limited time?
My sister is a financial manager and one evening while discussing our long term plans, we happened to share our ideas with each other, which made my sister realize that I was nowhere close to my future expenses. And while in my head, traveling meant new boots and bags, in reality, it was going to be the currency exchange rate, delayed flights, luggage allowances, food bills that will take most of my time and bank balance.
It’s never too late to bring about a change in our spending patterns, and that’s what she helped me do! Weekend outings were replaced by freelancing projects, which translates as expenditure turned to income. Now instead of 50%, I saved 70% of my income. Investing right needs dedicated time and education. A helper or an advisor at hand will definitely come to your rescue and help you stay grounded. It’s not just reducing expenses and adding up savings! But more of prioritizing your needs, making far-sighted decisions and lastly equalizing your desires to your budget.
Within a few months, I will be in Toul, a small town in eastern France, paving my way with well-thought financial and personal decisions. I now realise the meaning of Financial Advisor by your side 😉.
Written by Pankti’s Sister