6 Financial literacy lessons you won’t learn in school

Financial education is a very important aspect of our education. Unfortunately, our educational system has robbed us of this very important aspect of our lives. And while the school has made it compulsory to teach subjects like mathematics, English, and other subjects as the basis for success in life, they have neglected the very and most important parameters for success.

Financial literacy is a must for everyone who wants to be successful financially. And if you need this type of education, you must look outside the four walls of conventional schools, because it’s not taught there.

This article deals with the core of money education you may never have heard about, because it’s not taught in schools.

Why you need financial knowledge

Financial education has to do with your ability to grasp and effectively use various financial skills, from budgeting and knowledge-based saving to debt management and retirement planning.

Financial literacy equips you with the understanding needed to make informed decisions, leading to greater monetary freedom, less stress, and a better quality of life.

Financial literacy empowers you to take control of your finances and navigate the challenges and opportunities that arise

Conversely, low financial literacy threatens your financial well-being and that of your family. Without a sound financial education, you will be more susceptible and prone to predatory lending and costly errors in managing your finances and expenses that can lead to lifelong financial deficit and ultimately low quality of life.

When you lack financial knowledge, you are more likely to become trapped in cycles of poverty and debt. 

For example, poor spending habits and unwanted borrowing habits often lead to a frustrating end.

Now let’s talk about some of these lessons and insights that will help you to make informed choices when it comes to financial matters.

6 time-tested financial lessons you won’t learn in school

1. To make more money, you must love money and talk about it often

I know this is contrary to popular opinion, but the truth is that those who are wealthy are those who are money-conscious. They talk about money, they think about money and they see money everywhere. This is very simple and at the same time very logical.

By the law of attraction, you become attracted to what is dominant in your mind, what you always see and talk about. This is a very important rule of money and life generally. So deliberately think about wealth, talk about abundance, and never in any circumstances think about lack or even confess it.

This seems so basic, but it is the root of all lasting wealth and prosperity. And of course, you were never taught in school. 

2. Saving for the short term is good, but saving for the long term is bad

People save for several reasons like buying furniture, rent, and other short-term concerns.

However, saving for the long term or retirement may be wrong for several reasons.

One major reason why this may not be a wise decision is because of the high rate of inflation and currency depreciation.

For example in Nigeria, the inflation rate from 2020 to 2024 alone is almost 80 percent. And the Naira has depreciated more than more than imagined. For one saving for the long term, it becomes so unreasonable to do that, because, in the end, the value of what you have saved would have amounted to nothing. The worth of a million Naira in 2020 is now about 200 thousand naira.

Rather than saving for the long term, you should invest for a long term

3. Have a budget and track all your spending and expenditures

It takes financial discipline to be rich. This testament is true. It takes such a level of discipline to track all your spending and expenditures. This is important as it allows you to know whether you have exceeded your budget or not. 

Tracking your expenses helps you to become mindful of what you spend your money on. And without a budget, everything becomes a surplus. You see yourself spending without a boundary only to realize you have exceeded your financial threshold.

4. Know the difference between assets and liabilities

Most people don’t know assets and liabilities, and they can’t differentiate between the two. Hence they end up prioritizing liabilities over assets, which will ultimately lead to financial failures in the long run.

Assets are things you buy or own that appreciate with time, while liabilities are things you buy or own that depreciate with time. While building a house is an asset, buying a car for luxury is a liability. Investing in yourself on the other hand should be your greatest asset. This means you must take the discipline to invest your finances in knowledge, equipping yourself with the relevant skill set, and necessary education, especially financial education.

On the other hand, going for luxuries and other wishful spending can be termed as liabilities, as they will amount to nothing in the long run 

5. Know the difference between bad debt and good debt

When you get a loan to build a house, that is a good debt, while getting the same loan to get a personal car may be termed bad debt. Bad debt is a loan spent on liabilities, while good debt are loan spent on assets.

Knowing the difference will help you make informed choices on how you spend your borrowed money. The fact remains that it is never wrong to get a loan. But it is wrong to spend that loan on liabilities. Most individuals and corporate entities get loans for their businesses and it will interest you to know that most corporations do that. 

6. Get a Job, but becoming an entrepreneur is better 

While school and society will teach and empower you to get a job, it’s better when you become an entrepreneur.

There is nothing wrong with getting a job, but you must strive to be an entrepreneur, be it on a small scale or a larger scale.

The truth must be told that inflation only affects salary earners, whose earnings are fixed, no matter the inflation.

So taking Nigeria as an example, while the salary earners are groaning for the spike and increment in price of goods and services, the entrepreneurs are adjusting their selling prices to accommodate for the inflation.

So, inflation has little or no effect on the entrepreneur. Of course, inflation causes a decrease in demand, which ultimately may affect their sales, but on a broader view, the average entrepreneur increases the cost of his goods and services to reflect the current economic situation, while the salary earners are at the mercy of their fixed income irrespective of the current economic situation 

Conclusion

Financial literacy will save you from the errors of the naive and uninformed as regards your finances. In this vain, I must state that investing an amount of money or budgeting an amount of money annually for your financial education is a great and wise investment.

While you may agree with me on the aforementioned, I need you to take action now on these very six concepts I have exposed you to. And if in any way you have been complicit, and misunderstood any of those concepts, then it is high time you make the necessary adjustments now.

A few years from now, you will be happy you did.

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Paul Umukoro

Paul Umukoro

Paul Umukoro is an astute content writer with makemoney.ng. He writes mostly on hot, contested, and valuable topics in business, finance, and technology. He majored in computer science.

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