Executive Summary – Former Indian President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam passed away in July. He was a People's President and a man of many glorious accomplishments. We can imbibe a lot of his teachings like having a vision, being devoted to our goals, facing problems head on, being prepared for the worst and working hard to make our personal finances a success.
1) Have a Vision - If a person wants to achieve something, he should have a vision. The person has to have a concrete dream about what he wants to achieve and only then will he have a purpose in life and work towards achieving it. Similarly in personal finance, you should have a vision of how your financial status should be and what are the financial goals that you want to achieve. This will help you in knowing what steps to take towards achieving that and you will be motivated to do the same.
2) Absolute devotion to your goal – Setting goals is not enough. Sachin Tendulkar, the biggest cricketing icon of India and master batsman would practice for hours on the nets and work on his weaknesses irrespective of his fame, match result or awards. Similarly, once you have set your financial goals, you have to be absolutely devoted to work towards achieving them. You have to decide how to go about achieving them and start working towards them diligently. You have to spend time getting knowledge on latest news in financial markets, getting your finances sorted and take steps to achieve short-term and long-term goals. Once you have done the initial work, you have to review your financial plan and compare how the actual status is and tweak your plan and current financial status and portfolio to help you achieve your goals.
4) Preparedness – Change is the only constant in our life. Expected and Unexpected changes keep happening in our life which affects our finances. He said that instead of complaining, we should be prepared. We should have presence of mind to take the best course of action. There can be emergencies which create an imbalance in the finances or unexpected conditions in the markets leading to negative effects on our investments. We should be prepared for such situations. We should have an emergency fund. We should have a Plan B so that we are able to recover from tough financial situations.
5) Hard work and Perseverance will lead you to success – Eddie Cantor, an American entertainer said “It takes 20 years to become an overnight success”. It is so true. You cannot become wealthy overnight or achieve all your financial goals in a short time. You need to constantly work hard towards your goals and take steps to build your wealth to become financially successful. On the path to financial freedom, you may encounter setbacks which might disappoint you. But one should persevere continuously, work hard and learn along the way to get success. At the same time, you should make your money work hard too. You should invest smartly so that the money gives you optimum returns. As President Kalam had said that God helps people who work hard, we should work hard to attain financial success.