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Better work, information as desired: We give you the information you really need and are committed to a better and more ecological working environment. When Book Publisher Best of HR – Berufebilder.de® with a unique book concept and eCourses we offer over 20 years of experience in Corporate Publishing - with Clients like Samsung, Otto, Governmental Institutions. Publisher Simone Janson also heads the Institute Berufebilder Yourweb, which awards scholarships and belongs to one of the top 10 female German bloggers, referenced in ARD, FAZ, ZEIT, WELT, Wikipedia .

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Text comes from the book: "Your start in financial freedom: How you can achieve a financial breakthrough with the right mindset" (2021), published by GABAL Verlag, reprinted with the kind permission of the publisher.

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8Stefanie Kühn is a financial advisor and Certified Financial Planner.She has been advising clients with her company Private Finanzplanung Kühn eK since 1999, independently and on a fee basis. So she does not receive any commission from financial companies. Stefanie Kühn is one of the “Financial Advisors of the Year” for the renowned magazine “Euro Finances”, including one of the “Top 10 Financial Advisors” in Germany. Stefanie Kühn has published several guidebooks in book form, including titles such as “Gelassen in die Zukunft” or “A man is not a fortune”. We have on Best of HR – Berufebilder.de® did an interview with her. More information at www.private-finanzplanung-kuehn.de All texts by Stefanie Kühn.

Rich independent free like Keanu Reeves? How to achieve goals

Those who want to be rich, financially independent and free have to think carefully about what that means for them. This also means setting priorities and making decisions.

Financially independent like Keanu Reeves

The Canadian actor Keanu Reeves (Matrix, John Wick) is said to be one of the few down-to-earth stars in the film business. If you read his life story on Wikipedia, it is easy to shudder - born in Beirut, moved repeatedly, father left the family, he lost his daughter shortly before birth, and his wife died two years later in a car accident. How easily could such a rich actor use money as compensation today? Apparently, Reeves doesn't - he's known for his philanthropic commitment without attracting any publicity.

The fact that he rides the subway is often mentioned in the press to prove his modesty. Reeves is what we would surely call rich. But is he financially independent? We think so. He is said to have supported his sister with 5 million dollars in the fight against leukemia, he does not ring his donations, he has apartments in several cities, but by no means always in districts of the super-rich. He doesn't seem to care what others think of him - he lives as he sees fit. Wealth and financial independence are often confused. Because some people forget that the beauty of money is what you can do with it. Instead, you count the zeros in the account and only think about numbers. With them, money becomes an end in itself, and they compulsively accumulate it.

Enough money instead of as much money as possible

Zeros in the account have absolutely no meaning for us. We are never about that kind of wealth. Even though we, as financial advisors, are constantly concerned with money, it is not a goal for us to amass as much money as possible at any cost, and we do not advise our clients to do so. We are concerned with financial independence. And that is something different from what is classically understood by wealth. Financial independence means being able to decide what to do free of financial constraints.

It means saving money to live your life in a way that suits your needs and wants - just like the actor Reeves. The goal is then no longer to have as much as possible, but to have enough money. So what you will find in this book are strategies for pursuing the goal of being financially independent. We want to help you build a fortune that will enable you to live free from financial worries. Our wish is that you have enough money to afford what you want without having to live beyond your means or sleep poorly at night.

Money as a means to an end

Of course it would be wonderful to suddenly be a multimillionaire. But unless you actually get an unexpected windfall, striving for the first million can be downright debilitating. Why should you do this to yourself? For example, why should someone who wants nothing more than a peaceful retirement age in their own home with a garden, become a millionaire? Why should he expose himself to the constant frustration of striving for big money for years when he actually doesn't need it?

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So if you want to think of money as a means to an end, then you must first find out what you want before you can figure out how much money you need. It makes no sense to chase some anonymous sum. If you have a goal, you will also find a way. Without a destination, it's like with a navigation device: it's nice that there is one, but it's only useful if you enter a destination. And it is much more motivating to know what you are making an effort or saving yourself for than if it is just about a number.

Goals and wishes: How important is the freedom to say no to you?

Perhaps you know the quote attributed to many authors: "If you want to build a ship with someone, make them long for the sea." However, wanting and wanting and financial independence is more complicated than it looks at first glance. When it comes to wealth, the usual characteristics can be quickly listed: great car, great house with pool, great clothes. Surely a lot of people would like to jump into a pool behind the house if one was put on them. But in principle they are just as indifferent to the pool as they are to the private helicopter or the motor yacht. You have never missed her. For example, there would be the freedom to say no: to jobs they don't like, to jobs that don't suit them.

It was the same for one of our clients. She worked in a design office for quite a while. Then he changed Manager. The new man at the head of the office was younger and "kind of colder," as our client put it. He used a distant leadership style, which took some getting used to. But our client would have learned to deal with that after a while, she said. What was really difficult, however, was that the new boss changed the whole line of the office. It is true that the old chief designer also preferred a more businesslike style. However, warm, softer shapes have always found their place. The new one was much more radical. He just wanted to see cool, sharp-edged designs. Our client could not adapt to this style.

She didn't like him personally, nor did she get professional access to him. The result: Your work became torture. Your creativity dried up. Instead of having ideas flown to her, she had to laboriously suck everything out of her fingers. At one point she went to the office in the morning with a stomachache and left with a headache in the evening. In this situation, she developed a real heartfelt desire: She wanted to be financially so independent that she cancel could without having to go to the social welfare office. So our client needed so much money that she could bridge a few months, if necessary a year or two, until she found a new job. And one that she really enjoyed.

Find out what you really want

Our client wanted to be able to choose her work. She wanted to do what she enjoyed and not struggle with an unpopular job because of the monthly salary. She had nothing against work. But it should be the right job. For our client, financial independence was a decent liquidity reserve that would allow her to get by for six months or more without a regular income.

A second example: We advised a married couple who lived in the countryside near Munich. The two were farmers, but older. They had already given their farm to their children. Now they lived in part of their house and cultivated a piece of the garden. When we asked them what they needed for a month to live, they did the math and came up with 1.000 euros. At first we gasped for breath and asked again very carefully. Especially by Munich standards, that's extremely little! But the two hadn't made a mistake. They really had that low cost. There was no more property to be paid for and they had no rent to pay. They harvested a considerable part of their food in their own garden. They also spent a large part of their time there. For this they did not go on shopping trips and did not have any expensive hobbies. So their consumption costs were minimal, and the only extra they wanted was to be able to slip the kids something from time to time.

Achievable Goals: Live the way you want

So we define financial independence as the leeway we need in order to be able to live the way we want. This leeway varies from person to person. Some people need a lot of money to be financially independent. You have expensive hobbies or would like to take care of relatives. Other people have little desire to consume, they just want to work less and need less money overall.

Whatever the wishes in the individual case, there is always a great advantage if you set yourself the goal of financial independence instead of wealth. And that means: the goal is achievable. Financial independence can be achieved. If you want to be financially independent, you do not have to learn 1.000 tips and tricks from the finance box, you do not have to save beyond the pain threshold, and you do not have to risk daring investments. Instead, you need to find out what your real desires are and see that they become measurable goals.

Set priorities and make the right decision

You will have to set priorities and then make decisions. How much money you need depends entirely on you and your decisions. If a small house is enough for you, then you don't have to struggle to buy a villa. And if you do want a villa, then you have to weigh up whether it is other objectives that stand in the way, and then decide which goal is most important to you. What does financial independence mean for you? Hold on, to quickly shake an answer out of your sleeve is not enough. First, there are wishes that you may not admit until you think about it. Second, some desires are interrelated, others may contradict each other.

But if you develop a financial plan that is based only on wishes or half-thought-out goals, then you risk that your strategy collapses at the slightest difficulty because you don't have any Motivation trying to reach a savings goal or suddenly seeing yourself spending money on needs that you weren't even aware of. So you have to deal systematically and thoroughly with your wishes in order to find out why you need money in the first place. After that, you will learn how to turn your desires into goals. And since there are a few basic conditions in life, we will deal with the necessary goals in a further step.

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