"Change is the only constant", a great quote which did intimidate me for as long as I remember and when last year I got scammed for worth 35 lakh Indian Rupee by a reputed bank, which is an add-on to my memory and will stay with me as long as I can remember.
To initiate, I have had a weird relationship with money since childhood, I was a saver until I turned into an arrogant teenager and eventually as I stepped into my late 20s I realized it was a good time to go back to my initial avatar, though this time I was more mindful as a newbie retail investor and an unexplained desire to dig more into the financial world which let me be me and helps me in my creative goals.
2020 has been a life-changing year for many, I had to take a few drastic steps myself, which turned out to be a mere blessing and then one day when my bank account got credited with a few handsome numbers and I didn't think anything else than reinvesting the same for my long term goals.
Keeping it short, my dad insisted I invest in a safe zone then the money grows to its full potential via equity. A reputed bank misselling life insurance with a Guaranteed" investment scheme, a true murderer if you don't have any desire to beat inflation in general. A three and half month-long struggle to bring my case to justice with the most reputed bank in India and not only I earned my tax-free money back but it taught me 3 very indispensable lessons of life, super glad to share them with all.
To Note: I am not a financial advisor and anything shared is just my views and not any tips and tricks or shortcut to success and wealth. I strongly advise you to consult your professional financial advisor and plan your finances according to the needs and lifestyle you are habituated to. This website and g hold no responsibility for any nature of physical, financial or psychological loss or damage.
1. Money Control.
India got its independence in 1947 and in the last 76 years we have observed unimaginable economical growth, however, we may be dissatisfied with the opportunities we assume we lack in our country, it is mere ignorant if you are not able to grasp the potential the country holds and how to get the best of it.
Risk-taking appetite is not plenty yet considering our old folks still believe in Gold, Real-Estate, FDs and "Guaranteed return" Insurance to be the only way to generate financial assets for long-term goals and it is our immaturity to blame them for any lack of 21st-century knowledge. It is our duty and right to know more about present financial tools, and surprisingly many of which are available for free at the tip of our fingers hence it is up to us to do justice to our hard-earned money.
Yes, even I was offended by the blunder my dad put me through, but down the line I even realized it to be a blessing in disguise and it is my responsibility to know more about investment than playing the blame game. They did the best they can do, and it is high time to take power and control into our own hands to do the best we can do for ourselves.
Hence "Change is the only constant" became a mantra in my life and just like FD were the fav for them we have far more lucrative tools good enough to beat inflation and provide us with the best security we creative professionals require from time to time.
Controlling our financial assert is not about hoarding it under the mattress but rather educating ourselves about financial terms and ways to generate with the existing corpus and I will highly suggest a few books in the sequence to be read below for everyone to initiate their mantra to wealth and prosperity.
1. STEP 1:Rich Dad, Poor DAD by Robert Kiyosaki, and
The Psychology of Money: Timeless Lessons on Wealth, Greed, and Happiness. The book by Morgan Housel, helps anyone to lay a financial education foundation and how to think about the role of money in our day-to-day life. The stories narrated are very relatable, making it the best part of the reading experience. Many of it is based on the American economy hence I will advise it to be considered more from a money psychological point of view than a book giving you investment jargon.
2. One-time investment for better recurring Dividends.
Business Management and Financial Advisory agencies used to withhold the multi-dollar knowledge which kept them blessed monetarily is an old man story along with many share-market related myths. Numbers are not delusional and they all have a way to be understood by anyone who desires to. (I hold no basic knowledge of stocks and share market, and this article holds no information for the same)
It is the failure of various art academic institutes in India which shy away from practices non-creative aspects of running a creative studio and let alone grooming an artist and not a creative professional. It is more crucial at this point in time considering creative content creation is an amalgamation of various mediums. To add, social skills along with financial awareness are very indispensable characteristics which can take anyone a long way.
My severe lack of financial education and understanding of legal terms let me sign up for the scam, I admit every ignorance of mine and I take the oath to learn more and share my experience and knowledge with anyone who can benefit it from.
I assume many of us are aware of PPFs, Fixed deposits, gold and various modes of saving schemes along with Tax Benefits. Does the question remain how many of us ever thought to go under the sheet and dig deeper? CAGR, XIRR, Compound Interest, Absolute Returns, Guaranteed returns (I have sincerely earned an allergy for this term) Free-Lock Period, Lock-In period, Premium, SIP, SWP, Withholding, Withdrawing, Long Term and Short Term Tax, tax harvesting and Indexation Benefits are a few words of many which can make and break our decision of investing for any assigned goal.
As many professional investors swear by, every investment decision should hold a value, an agenda or a goal.
Control required to know more of the uncontrollable, yet control is not about being a control freak but to be aware of your risks and risk appetite to take calculated steps to reduce risk if any.
3. Book recommendation: Let's Talk Money by Monika Halan: My first step towards getting to know money basics and an eye opener for anyone who is an Indian resident and self-employed creative professional. It an easy to read and full of helpful financial jargon and terms. A book which helped me to understand the scam and how better to confront officials in their own game.
4. Book recommendation: What Every Indian Should Know Before Investing by Vinod Pottayil.
A great book to give a get-go and understand more about various investment and Tax saving tools available in India. One Girl child can also help you save tax.
5. Book recommendation: diamond in the dust saurabh mukherjea | Anyone serious about stocks selection, retail investing and wishing to dive into this beautiful world of rewarding volatility.
3. Creative business success is proportional to your bank account.
My profession is not simply an act of creating content 24*7 or simply to doing my taxes, paying my professional fees and keeping an account of all my sales and purchases. GST and ITR records need to be kept in accordance with its rules and I need to learn and be updated constantly to avoid any defaults.
It is easy to hire a Tax Consultant firm and personally I subscribe to one (I like to keep my work simplified), though we need to understand our business better than else.
I remember a very good friend of mine who told me his lack of understanding of taxes and how he never bothered to claim his TDS (10% tax deducted at source) at the end of a financial year even though he was under the no-tax bracket, as he assumed it is something to be not-claimable, made me think hard of how much money we creative professionals much be loosing in long term.
I hope this blog was helpful to any enthusiast or professional interested to climb the ladder of wealth, prosperity and success in their own life. I sincerely hope being creative is not considered just a way to rewind at the end of a tiring day, but a way to make a successful living.
Has anyone ever thought about how celebrities earn their handsome living and if you assume it's mere from the primary job we know them through, dig deeper. Most of them earn through commercial endorsements, many are multi-business investors, stock buyers and running a creative agency at the side.
To sum up, here are 5 bulletproof ways to Master your Creative Business and Money management
Average your annual income into your monthly salary. Understand your inflow and outflow to have better control of your expenses like necessities and avoidable expenditures (minimise your splurge)
Pay yourself first (investment for short, mid or long-term goals) and also set aside a certain corpus into your emergency fund, 6x of your monthly expenses or 12x, depending on how volatile your creative business is. There are various Mutual Funds available with above-average saving interest rates along with an option of instant liquidity just like your bank account.
Medical Insurance and Term Life-Insurance (the best way to safeguard your dear ones in any situation unforeseen) are non-negotiable and the premium value is always proportional to your age. It is advisable to avoid any Guaranteed schemes related to life insurance unless you understand completely what are you signing up for.
The art of keeping limited liability (loans or EMI, real estate maintenance fees, physical gold security, bank locker subscription) and regenerating wealth to reinvest in self and update the existing skills is crucial for any successful business.
Understanding India's economy and various tools to generate more wealth, save on taxes and more is important. Public Provident Fund, Mutual Fund and Gold Bonds are a few which help me afloat from time to time. Studying more about them over platforms like Groww, Labor Law Advisor, CA Rachana Ranade, and Pranjal Kamra are a few sources in case books are not your forte and they are free!
To be a successful investor is a life long journey of being a student to understand better investment tools and taking a calculated risks. The required enough greed to reach your goals is a good appetite and anything beyond is an act of immaturity.
Hello! Myself, Shovona Karmakar is an advertising photographer and a product stylist based out of Mumbai, India. I have worked with upGrad, Whisper, ICICI, Future Generali, Whisper, Pampers, Morningstar USA, Pepe Jeans and more. An avid plant lover and having the superpower to connect to stray dogs, keep me grounded. If you ever find a crazy chick flying on her cycle, that's me! Check out my other work at: shovonakar.com