Young adult, before you leave home…

Take care that you have learned to earn money. It will shock you that money turns the world around. Yes, you have grown older and it is now time to grow your own wings. Time to see the world. You believe you can fly.

Hang on there. Who bought you these wings? Are they borrowed? Did your parents give them to you over time? Have you grown into them? Are you riding on someone’s wings?

Young person, you need to earn your own money. Everything you take for granted is now on you. Your parents may have been a call away when there was an emergency, you will need an emergency fund. You were called for meals, heyyy, you will need to go shopping, think of storage and meal preps. You will need to wash all the dishes after your meals. What is the going rate for the lady that washes clothes? Or the live in help? Let’s talk about moving from your home to work or hang out with friends.

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There is a new phenomenon called bills. Bills are regular, they are delivered and even if you ignore them, they keep piling. How much is a unit of power? What about water? How many units were you using as you stood under that shower or filled the bath tub? How about the lights that never go off in your home? Did you say daddy knows these things?

First off, your salary is not enough to cover all your expenses. Yes, it looks exciting because it has so many zeros. It will not be enough. Because you must spend less than you earn.

Second, your schooling may have restricted you to do only 4 or 5 subjects. You can do so much more than the one job you now have. Even within the job, you can handle multiple things. It is the way you are designed. God made you in His image, think of all the diversity in the animals, birds and plants. You are just as diverse and even more because you have the capability of creating something out of what doesn’t exist.

If you have a head and two hands, then poverty is a choice.

Moses Mukisa, Straight Forward Financial Growth (2018)

Third, you do not exist for yourself but for others. Think about it, what is the excitement of moving out about? The prospect of meeting new people and spending more time with your friends. So you need to factor in others. What will your contribution to this world be? How will the people around you benefit from your existence? Money is a currency that can be used to access other capitals. It is the one currency that expresses how much you value a thing. So if you want people to know you value them, you must do it in a currency they understand.

Having financial resources is what enables you to turn your concern into compassion.

Moses Mukisa, Straight Forward Financial Growth (2018)

Fourth, you will not always be young. You have to plan for the future. Savings and investment. You must plan for a time when you will no longer be young and agile and when your friends will not be there to bail you out. This means you must be earning money now, right?

Fifth, your parents have invested and if I may so has the entire nation in your life this far. Your one job now is to attempt to repay them for their goodness towards you. You remember that beautiful graduation speech with tears streaming down expressing your gratitude. It’s now time to act on it.

Without work, you’d have nowhere to start, nothing to save and nothing to invest with, no matter how many opportunities show up.

Moses Mukisa, Straight Forward Financial Growth (2018)

Start by evaluating your strengths. A great hack I have found is to list down 100 things you are good at. Only 100. Get a pen or pencil and paper and write them down. You might not exhaust it in one hour because of all the negativity you may have lived through. Press on and determine to list 100. Ask your friends, your siblings and family. Reflect on all those comments and compliments you have received.

Determine which ones you would love to pursue before you die. Some people call this a bucket list. The things I must do. This is what you are passionate about. They should not exceed 25. Go over the list and cross out the ones which are not so close to your heart.

What can the market pay you for? Go over what are now your 25 ideas. Every idea has a conception, incubation, prototyping and roll out phase. Assess each of the 25 ideas. You should have at least three that you have been prototyping. If all of them are at conception, like light bulb moments, my dear young adult, stay home. Prototyping means you can sell a product or service in the market and earn some money. It may not be exactly what you like but it people are willing to pay for it. For example, you can bake 12 cupcakes and sell them all at the office. Your capacity later maybe 2000.

Before you leave home, you should be able to earn money from more than one source of income.