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10/6/07

Defining Financial Freedom

What is financial freedom? Basically, one would probably define financial freedom as being rich or as being wealthy. But, what is rich? What is wealthy? Do you define “being rich” or “being wealthy” as having a lot of money? Do you define “being rich” or “being wealthy” as having the time to do what you want when you want, or do you feel that spending more time with your family is the defining characteristic of success?

Here is the million dollar question: do you need a lot of money to be able to have the freedom to do what you want and to be able to spend more time with your family? In other words, do you have to be “financially free” in order to achieve your “higher” goals?

Up to this point I have asked many questions but have provided few answers. The reason for this is because each person is different. A lot of money, a big house, and an expensive car are not necessary for many people to be happy. Many people who are not financially rich lead exceptionally happy lives. These people create a budget and stick to it, however, these people enjoy quality of life over financial success. Some of the happiest people on earth make barely enough money to fit into what is defined as the “middle class.”

How does this help define financial freedom? Basically, there are two ways to think of financial freedom. First, one can have an abundance of money and can, therefore, afford anything one wants. This means that money is not an issue of concern. The other way one can be financially free is for one to not care about money. These are the travelers and movers in the world that make just enough money to support themselves, but because they are always on the move, traveling around and discovering new things, money is not an issue. These people believe that life experiences are more important than the size of a bank account.

The big question you need to answer is: what kind of financial freedom do you want?


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