Taking care of your financial wellbeing

Fairien Azeem has been in the financial services industry for over 25 years, with 20 years spent running her own award-winning financial services business. Fairien believes that everyone should have access to financial education so they can build financial security. We’re thrilled to be partnering with Fairien and to kick things off we asked for her tips on what self-employed folks can do to take care of their financial wellbeing.

Most of us understand the importance of self-care and wellbeing. We talk openly about our health wellbeing and our mental wellbeing, but what about our financial wellbeing?

There are many reports and research papers that discuss the statistic of financial stress, with one recent financial wellness report stating that 1.8 million Australian workers are suffering from severe and moderate levels of financial stress.

So what is financial wellbeing?

Financial wellbeing is about a sense of security and feeling that you have enough money to meet your needs. It's about being in control of your day-to-day finances and having the financial freedom to make choices that allow you to enjoy life.

Many people find money a topic that they don’t want to talk about or one that seems taboo. But what happens when people bury their heads in the sand and are disconnected from their money story is they end up ignoring the issues. This can then accumulate and cause stress and anxiety. Talking about money is one of those things that you can’t just push under the rug, otherwise it will fester.

When you deal with your money fears and blocks you’ll be able to work out solutions and become connected to your money story. This puts you in control of your financial future, improves your mindset in regards to money, and allows you to take the first step towards financial wellbeing.

In my view, there are 8 core pillars to help you gain financial wellbeing.

1. Money mindset

Money mindset is your thoughts and behaviours in regards to money and the foundation of financial wellbeing. Everyone has a money story and working on your fears, blocks, limiting beliefs, self sabotaging behaviours, and habits can help you transform your money story to one where you can have a healthy relationship with money.

2. Cash flow 

Understanding your cash flow, spending behaviours, and setting budgets will allow you to have control over your money . It's much more beneficial to tell your money where to go, rather than wondering where it has gone.

3. Set goals

Set yourself financial and life goals. When you have goals you have something to work towards. Use the SMART principle, to set the goals and be very specific about what you want to achieve. Create a vision board and manifest your goals, put it out into the universe and watch your dreams come true. This might sound a bit woohoo… but just try it anyway.

4. Risk protection

Your ability to earn an income is one of your most important assets. But things can happen, you could get sick, or injured. So make sure that you seek out professional help to protect yourself with adequate insurances in the case anything unforeseen happens.

5. Superannuation...

...is not a scary word. It's your money which is held in a tax effective structure, for you to enjoy when you retire. Compounding is the magic of super, understand how your super is invested and in what. Contribute more if you can.

6. Home ownership

Everyone needs a place of belonging, a home that’s theirs. If you choose to borrow to buy a home, make sure you shop around for the best rate for your home loan, and use a reputable broker who will be able to help you through the maze of home loan choices.

7. Investments

Investments can help you create passive income sources and be a great way to build wealth. Be sure to understand the correlation between risk and reward. Investments are not a way to make quick money, but rather a long-term wealth building method.

8. Legacy

You’ve worked so hard to build wealth and create financial wellbeing. What legacy do you want to leave, ensure that you’ve put in place a sound estate plan to have your assets distributed as your wish.

So, what do you think about these 8 core financial wellbeing pillars? Are they helpful? How many do you already implement? Are there any you can start working on soon?

I’d love to hear how you’re going. Feel free to email me at fairien@fairienazeem.com.au.

Head on over to Fairien's GigSuper partner page to read more about the work Fairien is doing and to discover more about her partnership with GigSuper.