Does money makes the world go around?
The short answer to that is 'NO'!
Lee and Doug live in Johannesburg. A Zimbabwean works for them as caretaker on their large property combining business premises and a sprawling family home.
He went to home to Zimbabwe recently for his month's annual leave.
He came back a sad man. Cheerful in seeing his family but disgusted by the loss of good schooling, decent government and shocking business practices. There simply are no jobs and the farms which were amongst the richest in the world, lie barren, full of weeds.
He told me that his family survives on the barter system.
They grow vegetables, especially maize, and he trades them for meat and bricks or fabric to make homemade garments.
He laughed when I mentioned actual money. 'The Zim dollar is worthless so nowadays they operate with the American dollar of which we see very few.'
The idea of him being able to save money is laughable.
Stories about THE BIGGEST MONEY MISTAKE I EVER MADE were highlighted by Charis Torrance in a SA Fairlady magazine article last July.
She highlights the following:
Kristia van Heerden in her early days before she became well known as the host of THE FAT WALLET SHOW, abused her credit card and store cards until by the time she was 25 she owed over R100,000. Earning only R5000 per month, it was a substantial amount. She took good advice and paid back every cent. She was forced to educate herself in money matters.
Maya fisher-French and her husband moved from an affordable house to live in an upmarket area in a bigger better (or so they thought) home. It had to be repaired extensively and expensively until they had to try to sell their large house which had become a nightmare. In a deflated market they couldn't recoup the money they had carelessly spent.
They were in serious financial trouble which took them years to escape from.
Samke Mhlongo was fortunate as a young woman to find a job that paid her exceedingly well. She lived the 'good life' with a luxurious car and apartment and dozens of Spa treatments.
The firm for whom she worked had to suddenly downsize and she was left jobless with huge debts to pay off.
She learned to live within her means and studied for a degree over the next few years. Today she is the CEO in a company she founded herself, The Next Chapter Wealth Partners.
Personally I grew up in a home where money was wisely and carefully used.
Holidays were in our comfortable caravan while friends went to expensive hotels for weeks at a time. My father had his own engineering business and we lived comfortably but not lavishly like many we knew. i was encouraged to sew my own clothes from the age of 14. It is still a hobby of mine.
My parents advised and helped me get a degree.
I must have absorbed my inclination to save a little every month and how to manage a small inheritance I received when I was 33 years old.
It was not a huge amount of money but I invested it carefully.
When I needed a new car, I borrowed the money from my own investment and PAID IT BACK until it was earning interest once again. I also chose a car that I could afford.
I bought things I really needed and paid for an overseas holiday from that fund. Each time I PAID THE MONEY BACK.
When I could, I invested that money in the house my husband and I owned and was able to reduce the sum we owed the bank, considerably.
It was a huge saving.
Spending money wisely on things we could afford has made our lives in our retirement a pleasure.
We live in a home we love in a dream come true situation, near the sea. We still consider each expense carefully and do not squander money unnecessarily. We pack up and travel in our caravan, with friends who also love that lifestyle. We had 3 months on the road visiting stimulating places this year.
Round a campfire closer to home we have planned our next 3 months away visiting the scores of excellent South African game reserves, of which Kruger Park is only one, from May to July in 2020.
My heart bleeds for those foolish enough to have maxed out credit cards and who are caught in a spiral of simply being able to pay the interest off their debt.
Do not despair. Discipline yourself and gradually extricate yourself out of debt. It might take you years but you will hav learned a valuable lesson in the meantime.
As a young person learn as much as you can about money and the management thereof.
Ask everybody and anybody what their experience of money is. Listen to the negative stories of which there are millions and the relatively few positive experiences. Read read and do more reading, do not invest in pyramid schemes. There is NO QUICK WAY TO GET MONEY.
Save for that dream holiday, paying it off for years after it is long gone is simply NOT WORTH IT
There are many places and activities that you can take part in that are absolutely free. Use the internet and find out!
Above all .......
LIVE within your means.
Only then will you learn the true meaning of happiness and freedom.
Practice makes perfect.....and good luck one and all.