Financial Intelligence: 10 Tips for Taking Control of Your Financial Destiny

Published: 17th June 2010
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When it comes to money matters, most people leave things to chances. They believe, erroneously, that some forces would just force their financial affairs into

shape. Taking charge of your financial destiny involves applying some time tested financial principles, ten of which are highlighted below.

You certainly won't get there overnight, but if you are diligent in applying the tips below, in the process of time, you will achieve mastery over your financial


1-Set Specific Money Goals: Taking hold of your financial affairs involves first setting money goals that are specific, practical and time-bound. Attempting to

achieve financial freedom without a goal would look like playing a football match without the goal posts. You won't be able to measure your progress. If it is

$1,000 you want, state it in writing and indicate when you want it.

2-State What You Would Do To Get it: Money does not fall down from heaven; it is simply a compensation or a reward for a value you are producing for others.

If you are in paid employment, think of how to increase your productivity so that you can earn promotion and more money. If you are self employed, think of

what services you would render to people to earn income from them. That is the way it works.

3-Pay yourself first: It is ironic. We all tend to pay attention to the welfare of everybody else- family members, colleagues in the office , friends and general well

wishers- except our self-. We give out $500 here, $100 there and we forget to pay attention to ourselves. Pay yourself first by always saving ( and then

investing) 10% of any income you earn first. Then you can consider others.

4-Pay off your debt: Ever before you start to save and invest, take an inventory of all your debts and make plans to pay them off starting from the most difficult

in terms of interests to the smallest ones. Pay as is convenient and only be concerned that you maintain your goodwill and credibility.

5-Never spend to impress: Most people spend money to impress friends and peers. Are you guilty? Why not join an investment club instead of a social club? It

is good to give yourself a treat, but must you visit that exotic restaurant all the time? Can't you do without an unnecessary hole in your pocket? Cut your

spending on entertainment and other social spending.

6-Sharpen your financial intelligence: There are two major ways to improve your financial fortune. The first is to cut down on your expenses and the second is

to increase your earning power. We recommend you combine the two. Deploy a sharp axe into your expenses and thereafter do everything you can to

increase your earning power. Work smartly in the office to earn a promotion. Learn new skills you can deploy to make money. Engage your skills after the

office hours.

7-Diversify your sources of income: In addition to your current source of income, you need to get three others. You hardly can get to a comfort zone in your

financial affairs if you depend on just a single source of income. Extend your brand and you can squeeze more money out. You have more skills than you think

you possibly have. You can do it.

8-Get a mentor: Get close to someone who has done what you aspire to be and get him or her to coach you. A mentor prevents you from experiencing the

pains and the mistakes he or she had gone through. Be ready to pay some small fee if you have to do so. What you gain by working with a good mentor is far

more than the money you would paid.

9-Take action: Take action on what you have set out to do. Don't worry about perfection the very first time you are starting out. Start anyhow and you will get it

right along the way. A shoddy plan being acted on is better than a beautiful plan that is gathering dust on the shelve. Take action now!

Once you start applying those tips, don't stop until you have made them part of your life and you will see amazing results.


Ayo Arowolo, a certified trainer and financial journalist, is a leading personal finance coach in Nigeria with over 20 years of practice. You can visit his blog at or join his ever growing forum at You may also want to order his best selling

book at

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