I’m writing this post on the 4th July, which is Independence Day in the USA and although I’m an Englishman living in the UK, it got me thinking about independence and financial freedom in particular.
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve been fascinated by America.
I used to watch the cop shows on the telly in the 1970s and hoped that I would get the chance to visit the USA someday to see what it was really like.
Little did I know that I would get the chance to visit the States many times on holiday and business.
It’s given me an opportunity to see lots of amazing wonders and visit places like the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite, New England, the Florida Keys, Mount Rushmore and visit great cities such as Boston, New York, Las Vegas, San Francisco, L.A., Philadelphia and Washington.
It’s also given me the chance to make American friends and customers too and to discover what makes them tick.
And herein lies the real reason why I think I was so fascinated with America when I was a kid…
The American Dream
According to wikipedia:
The American Dream is a national ethos of the United States, a set of ideals in which freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success and an upward social mobility achieved through hard work.
This appeals to me very strongly and always has, ever since I was a kid and knew nothing about the American Dream.
I’ve always wanted to be free to make my own decisions, free to do what I want, when I want, where I want, with whom I want, etc.
I’ve always believed in doing my best, achieving as much success as I can in my life and being the best I can be.
My life has not been a tale of woe and struggle by any means but it always hurt me when my parents could not afford to buy me the things that my friends seemed to get handed to them on a plate.
As a young child, I could see how this hurt my parents too and so I didn’t want to have to rely on my parents in this way.
And this meant that I’ve had to wait on many occasions – for many years in some cases – until I could afford to buy the things I wanted myself, brought about by my own education, training and hard work.
The idea of the American Dream is, of course, rooted in the United States Declaration of Independence – hence the link with today.
Financial Independence And Financial Freedom
There’s no doubt that I would not have been able to afford to do the things I have done without money.
Starting with no money and just my solid education and self-belief (which my parents could give me – Thank You!), I’ve gone on to become the man I wanted to be with the wherewithal to achieve the life I wanted.
I’ve generated the money I have through investing my time into my own education.
I’ve then had the strength of mind and character to apply my new knowledge and skills to pursue what I wanted from my life.
But my journey wasn’t a linear learning curve, always up and up, always throwing double sixes and collecting £200 every time I passed Go!
I went on a meandering journey for 10 years or so, involving trial and error as I followed the advice of so-called financial experts, only to learn that the Financial Services industry does not exist for my benefit and is not the vehicle to financial independence and financial freedom!
You only have to look at those in life that do have financial riches to see that they did not achieve their financial success by investing money in savings accounts and mutual funds.
These products and others offered up by the Financial Services industry are designed to protect what you have already and are aimed at those who want someone else to manage their money for them.
In other words, the Financial Services industry exists for those who are not truly financially independent – at least not in the mind.
Those of us who are truly financially independent are able to make our own decisions about our own investments – what, where, when, why, how, etc.
And that means continuing to learn about investing and investments, not only to protect the wealth and income that we already have (at a much lower cost) but to also grow our wealth and income much faster into the future.
Financial Freedom And What It Means To You
I’ve explained in this article, what financial freedom and financial success mean to me.
Now I want to know what they mean to you so please leave me a comment below.
Understanding what financial success means to you is a key driver for deciding your own investment strategy and it is therefore one of the seven steps in my 7-step system called “X to 3X in 7: Start Tripling Your Investment Returns In 7 Weeks Or Less!”