finance

More Than One Side To A Story, More Than One Side To An Income Statement

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I didn't enjoy accounting in university. It was one of the reasons I switched from business to journalism. But I did love playing Robert Kiyosaki's game Cashflow and I would drive around with it in the trunk of my car when I still had one. It was from Cashflow that I learned there are two sides to an income statement (aka profit & loss). Many people focus so much of their attention on one side (income) while neglecting the other (expenses). I recall in Cashflow it was as easy, if not easier, to get out of the rat race as the janitor as it was as a doctor or lawyer. The traveling journalist, which unfortunately was not a player in the game, seems sexy to some because of the lifestyle that comes with it. Financially it's more like the janitor than the doctor or lawyer (notice what happened in the digital media industry this week?). But that's fine if you understand there are two sides to the income statement. High expenses are not necessarily indicative of happiness or a fulfilling lifestyle. Slashing expenses frees up cashflow and can create a lot of opportunities - both financial and in terms of lifestyle. In my case, I went through a restructuring when I wanted the freedom to live abroad and travel. My income took a big hit but that was the tradeoff for obtaining location independent income, which allowed me to travel. In turn, it was easy for me to cut costs. The more I would reduce unnecessary expenses, the more freedom I would have to travel and cover world events, which is what I love doing. Now I'm working on building up the revenue side. Getting out of the rat race (having income from business and investments cover total expenses) is progressing slowly for me. I thought jumping in a business accelerator would allow me to get out quick. It didn't. But that's okay. Being "stuck" as a nomadic journalist can be a very fun way to play the game.