You Can Be a Slave No More

cotton plantationWhen I think of slavery I imagine southern cotton plantations with a master and workforce who laboured to keep their owner in luxury. Through work, service and loyalty a slave existed to satisfy the wants and needs of their master. When you are unable to go beyond satisfying your wants and merely exist to maintain your basic needs you are in a state of virtual slavery.

The Plantation Slave

The plantations and concept of slave and master are long gone, but slavery nonetheless still exists. When you pay taxes for your hard earned labor you benefit a master. By allowing yourself to take on credit card debt you pay huge interest rates on that balance – you become a slave to the credit issuer. When you refuse to save for retirement you commit yourself to a lifetime of serving a master.

In some rare cases it was possible for a slave to buy their freedom from their master after a certain amount of years of service or for a price. The idea of buying freedom became the driving force for many born into a life of slavery and is remarkably similar to our quest to work and eventually retire. Ask a retired person what they cherish the most about their life and the usual answer will be a sense of freedom.

Freedom to a Retired Person

debtWhat does this freedom actually mean to a retired person? The Monday to Friday routine disappears, along with the alarm clock. You no longer fear the possibility of being fired, laid off or downsized. You have assets and minimal liabilities. Travel, hobbies, and family time are available in abundance.

Why Save for Retirement?

Many people scoff at the idea of saving for retirement. They simply can’t imagine a goal so far into the future. But here’s the problem; you will age, your body will deteriorate, you’ll eventually tire of working and dream of a simpler life.

Unfortunately when these feelings hit home it will be too late. At age 65 you will receive government pensions and quickly realize you’ll barely have enough to satisfy your needs. You’ll trade a life of slavery for a life of poverty.

Save Now to Retire Later

Retirement PlanYou want that freedom when you still have the energy to use it. That means preparing for a retirement so you can buy the freedom you’ll desperately want in the future. Saving for a goal over thirty years away is a daunting task, but if a slave could imagine a better life by buying their future freedom, you can as well.

Water BarrelThe BalanceIn my E-books (“Water Barrel” and “The Balance”) I discuss simple methods to live sensibly for today, take charge of your financial affairs, and invest safely for the long term. For more information please visit David Penna Amazon.

As always, I am not a qualified financial advisor. I just relate financial management to my own experience which may not resemble yours at all. Advice is frequently worth exactly what you paid for it. Most of mine came from expensive experiences.

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