7 steps to financial stability for every Ukrainian:

14 min
15.05.2023

How can Ukrainians achieve financial stability now, you ask? Financial crises, political unrest, the COVID-19 pandemic, and conflicts that escalated into full-scale war have led to a decrease in living standards, increased unemployment, and other challenges for Ukrainians. In 2014 and 2022, many people had to leave their homes, and many experienced the loss of loved ones. How can one maintain financial stability in such situations? There is no way, people cannot control everything, we cannot manage risks to the extent that we have a 100% guarantee that we can be safe in any situation. That’s life. We cannot predict everything. The only thing we can do is increase the chances of preserving our finances and assets in complex and unusual situations.

What is financial stability? Could it be a myth?

In the scientific context, financial stability is defined as the ability of a financial system or an individual company to withstand stressful situations and economic difficulties while maintaining its functioning and capacity to carry out financial operations. Financial stability is indeed associated with a healthy financial condition of companies or the economy as a whole, ensuring their ability to preserve and increase their capital and engage in investment activities. Ensuring financial stability is indeed a crucial task for governments and companies as it contributes to maintaining the trust of consumers, investors, and other stakeholders in the financial system or company.

Currently, we are not in a position where the government can provide everyone with the opportunity to be financially stable. Indeed, there is a chance to create conditions in which every individual and the system they are part of can be safe and economically stable. And it always starts with oneself. The more self-sufficient and independent a person becomes, the more stable they can create a system around themselves. Indeed, it is truly possible to achieve. Examples of this can be seen in countries such as Norway, Sweden, and the Netherlands. I agree that in a broad spectrum, every system will have its flaws and downsides. There is no perfect system. Absolutely, it is possible to create a certain level of stability and security for both individuals and the country. As you believe, Ukraine has the potential to build such a system. Indeed, implementing such an idea in practice can be more challenging than it sounds. But everything depends on people. From us.

What opportunities do negative situations in the world currently give us?

It all starts with ourselves. While it may sound paradoxical, there are hidden opportunities within every negative situation. By leveraging these opportunities, negative situations can gradually transform into positive ones over time. Such a perspective on life can indeed be a way to survive and thrive. I understand that it’s challenging, but let’s find positive opportunities in our situation. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.

Many Ukrainians, especially women, are currently living abroad. They have the opportunity to explore other cultures, find what may be lacking in Ukraine, learn from the knowledge that has developed in different conditions, gain experience that Ukrainians have not lived through, and, in turn, share their own culture, spreading influence and recognition of their country. Yes, countries can also be viewed from a branding perspective I would like to remind everyone that each individual bears responsibility for how they present themselves to other nations. Please be responsible and respectful towards other cultures.

A sense of unity, cooperation, and solidarity. While one can debate whether such a sense of unity is illusory or short-lived, the fact remains that individuals have experienced the feeling of being united. It is the feeling when you see another Ukrainian and feel happy that you can speak your own language with someone. It is the feeling when you can help those in need, and that assistance truly makes a difference. It is the feeling towards a completely unfamiliar person, but because they are from the same nation, it feels like they are an old friend, simply because they come from the same homeland. Indeed, it is truly a treasure. Yes, there is another side to it as well. In such situations, people can experience not only help and kindness but also audacity, deceit, and negativity.

The rise of national consciousness. We all feel the value of our culture, its uniqueness, and its strength. And this serves as a resilient foundation for building a strong nation.

We develop qualities such as resilience, courage, adaptability, the ability to control our strongest emotions, and being more attentive to our own health and the well-being of others. I apologize if it seemed that way. Indeed, these abilities and qualities play a crucial role not only in personal finance management but also in creating and managing large systems.

Why do I call these changes opportunities?

The sense of community and appreciation for culture can help individuals find new contacts and partners, which can have a positive impact on their business.
It can also help individuals find new approaches and ideas to solve problems. The rise of national consciousness fosters the formation of shared goals and cooperation within society, which contributes to the strengthening of the state as a whole.

Self-awareness helps individuals understand their strengths and weaknesses, accept them, and embrace them. By doing so, they can find new applications for their skills and abilities. Understanding one’s uniqueness is indeed one of the key steps towards financial success.

Such profound life experiences and training can cultivate resilient individuals who are capable of creating unique services, products, and opportunities. When people feel strong and unique, they have the ability to attract attention, influence others, and create innovations. This contributes to success both at the individual level and on a national scale.

So, we are changing, and that is good. Now let’s move on to the practical part.

What do we need to do next to establish financial stability for ourselves and everyone?


1. Understand your needs. To truly understand your needs, it’s important not just to think about them and write down how you want to live, but to meet your actual needs. This can be done by closely monitoring your expenses. It’s essential to create a budget and track your expenses over a certain period, even if it’s a small budget and even if you end up spending it all every month. To help you understand and visualize your expenses, This is a critical step in managing your finances. It may turn out that you have very few emotional expenses, even though you may think otherwise. You might believe that you spend a lot, but by following your budget, you will realize that your monthly expenses are within a normal range for an average lifestyle. In this case, it’s important to shift your focus from how to save to how to earn more. It may turn out that you are indeed spending a significant amount, and it would be beneficial to optimize your budget. All of this entails different goals and actions. Forming and tracking a budget is crucial, and it’s equally important to set goals and stick to your plan.

Understanding your needs is not only important in a financial sense but also in other aspects of life. And in your personal life as well. Because if you only focus on meeting your financial needs, you may easily and quickly resort to making impulsive decisions. It will be harder for you to find ways to earn income to cover necessary expenses that need to be paid. It’s important to have inner motivation. I wrote about it in another article. By understanding your motivation, you can set financial goals and confidently work towards achieving them.

2. Debt repayment or creating a debt repayment plan.

After analyzing your budget, one of the top financial goals should be to pay off any debts, especially loans. As a rule, it can involve significant expenses or smaller but recurring ones.
During budgeting and tracking your expenses, you may realize that you have multiple loans or that new ones keep appearing.

I believe that due to the current circumstances in our lives, the majority of Ukrainians are using loans. Тому що, часто просто не видно інших варіантів. Sometimes it can indeed be a solution to the situation at hand. But when you have a loan, approach it with responsibility. Create a plan to consistently make loan payments, avoid payment delays, and explore additional income opportunities. However, keep in mind that it’s important to repay your own debts. Being free from debts can indeed provide a greater sense of independence and reduce the financial burden of repayment obligations and credit ratings. This is a money-saving approach because when you use credit, you still have to pay fees. Even small fees over a long period of time can add up to a significant amount. It is indeed important not to overpay when it’s already difficult to earn money.

Moreover, your debts create conditions for financial stress.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6450620/

3. Everyone faces the question of how to earn more.

Understand one thing – when your needs always exceed your expenses, that’s a GOOD thing But when you realize that you enjoy your current standard of living and you want even better, and you have the motivation to improve your craft, strive for places you haven’t been yet, and elevate your level. And that’s good, it’s a motivation. Especially if you value this year’s standard of living.

The most effective way to increase your income (next step) is to understand your uniqueness. In broad terms, your uniqueness refers to your distinct qualities that you can exchange for money in society. It encompasses your unique perspective on the world, through which you can create something that hasn’t been created before. Or adding something special to what people already have, something that will make a service or product more interesting and useful to them. Your unique combination of abilities allows you to approach niche problems in a different way.


To discover the unique value of a person, one can delve into their internal conflicts. While our conflicts may appear similar on the surface, if we delve deeper, we will find that the underlying causes of these conflicts are different for each individual. Indeed, the solutions to these conflicts can be highly unique as well.

To help you even a little bit, please provide answers to these questions.

1. In which areas do you feel most comfortable? What tasks come easily to you and why?

2. What personal qualities, characteristics, or talents do you possess that you consider unique and rare? How can these qualities be beneficial to other people and society as a whole? If you don’t know the answers yourself, you can ask other people whom you trust for their input. Even your supervisor, who values you.

3. What life experiences, obstacles, or challenges have you successfully (or not) overcome? How can these experiences provide you with valuable knowledge or advantages in specific areas?

4. What achievements do you consider as your valuable accomplishments? Delve deep within yourself. One can receive a great reward but not value it as much as someone else would. Why can it be so? Because one person may overcome obstacles that another person finds much easier to overcome. So, what achievements do you value, and what specific obstacles have you overcome to achieve them? For example, receiving a sports award is a great victory, but what did you internally improve within yourself to achieve such a victory? Perhaps you have learned to be disciplined and organized, and you enjoyed cultivating those qualities. Maybe you started to better understand your body and how it functions, and that is something you particularly enjoy about your achievement. If we remove social approval from the equation. How can this be used to earn money?

5. What principles and beliefs guide your life? Which of these values can be utilized to earn more money? You can find a list of values on the internet. Next, you can highlight them, prioritize them, and select only the top 5 key values. By considering them as a whole, you will understand what drives you and who will appreciate the same values as you do. Those who desire to have similar values or wish to develop and understand them more deeply will appreciate them. It is natural that you may have a deeper understanding of certain values compared to others.

6. Be the most selfish person in the world for 15 minutes. Praise yourself for your character, and experience, for big and small actions (you slept well today), even commend yourself for things that didn’t work out, highlight your unique character traits, and describe your appearance. Perhaps your ears are large, and that’s good because it’s a sign of long-lived individuals. Perhaps you have a large nose, which signifies your strong character. Perhaps you have an explosive personality, which creates conditions to motivate others to take action, and so on. Do you have interesting and usual characteristics? The answer to that question is always the same – YES. What specific characteristics do you possess?

7. What do other people need right now? What would help them live better and happier? What can make you happier is likely to make a portion of people happier as well. The question is, how many of these people are there?

Try and experiment. There is no exact answer, and it is not necessary. Perhaps only towards the end of life will you truly realize what your innate uniqueness is. Before that, try and test your hypotheses in this regard.



4. Seeking additional income or increasing current earnings.

Indeed, the pursuit of increasing income is a universal story, applicable to both the poor and the wealthy. It is very difficult to universally show people how they can earn more. It is better to communicate and consider individual stories. But I will give it a try. Think about this…

You need to understand your possibilities. What are the different forms of work?

Full-time job

Part-time job

Freelance work

Work from home (possibly packaging)

Entrepreneurship, owning a business, or starting a startup

Investing

If, for example, you already work full-time, you can take on additional freelance projects. If you’re solely a freelancer, you can explore full-time remote job opportunities online ChatGPT Perhaps you work full-time and can allocate a portion of your earnings towards investments. Perhaps you work part-time and can gradually work on building your own business on the side.

You can engage in multiple jobs; the question is mainly about time management and ensuring you have time for rest and relaxation.


What do you want to do? What is your verb? (Sleeping and eating don’t count 🤗)

Read
Learn
Write
Listen
Teach
Talk
Research

If you enjoy reading, you can engage in paid book reviews or become a book critic. If you enjoy learning, you can pursue further education by applying to educational institutions and aiming for a funded position. If you enjoy having conversations, you can start your own podcast and interview interesting people. If you enjoy teaching and sharing your knowledge, you can create your own course. If you enjoy research, you can find ways to get involved with research centers and institutions.

What is your level of qualification?

Jobs for students and those without experience.

Jobs for mid-level professionals.

Jobs for highly skilled professionals.

It’s important to understand this in order to avoid doing a job that doesn’t suit you. If a mid-level professional takes on a job that doesn’t require experience, especially if it’s a job more suitable for a student, it may limit their growth opportunities. If a mid-level professional strives to obtain a job above their current level, they may face numerous rejections, which can lead to frustration and even depression. It’s important to have a realistic understanding of your skill level and capabilities as a specialist. However, it can still be beneficial to challenge yourself and go the extra mile in your work, aiming to exceed the expectations of professionals at your level. This proactive approach can help you grow and advance in your career over time. So, a little more than you can do and know, gradually reaching a higher level.


What type of payment do you need?


Fixed salary

Performance-based pay

Bonuses and incentives

Shares and stock options in the company

You can absolutely combine all these types of earnings.

For example, from all of this, I understand that I work full-time, can continue developing my business, and also work online as an additional source of income. I want to study, write, and conduct research. I can enroll in a course (possibly using grants), work as a freelancer and write articles, as well as conduct a small research study to determine the viability of my business idea. I can also learn how to conduct research in a specific field and offer my services to others.

It may sound challenging at first, but try to think in this direction for a few weeks.

5. Develop learning skills.

The relationship between learning and the ability to earn is not straightforward Indeed, research suggests that individuals who engage in lifelong learning have better chances of finding employment and earning higher wages. Nowadays, a lot of new tools, methods, and research are emerging that allow us to perform our work better, faster, and more efficiently. The more tools you know, the faster and more efficiently you can perform your work, producing higher-quality results. And the more time you have for yourself.

https://www.oecd.org/education/skills-beyond-school/48631582.pdf

What skills will make your regular job easier? Where can you save time? What can you automate? What tools and skills do you need to know to become a more valuable specialist?
Most likely, you will have a long list of desires and various skills. Prioritize what is currently more important to you and focus on the main things.


6. Building an emergency fund is an important step towards financial stability.


It’s essential to save a portion of your income to build an emergency fund. Aim to set aside a percentage that is comfortable for you, such as 10-30-40%, to ensure you have funds available in case of unforeseen circumstances. Strive to have a consistent safety net or financial cushion. You can make use of financial tools such as depositing(the function banka an example) money in a bank, using mobile banking apps like Monobank, or setting up automatic transfers or savings plans. Additionally, some apps or financial institutions offer features where a percentage of your purchases can be automatically allocated to your savings. When you have a financial safety net, you will experience less financial stress and make more informed decisions. Ukrainian researchers have reached the conclusion that having a financial safety net, such as an emergency fund, can reduce financial stress and improve the decision-making process.

http://dspace.wunu.edu.ua/bitstream/316497/11687/1/Стаття%202013_1.pdf

7. Investing

This is an equally important stage. When you have a stable income and a financial safety net, it’s time to start investing. It’s important not to jump into investing all your money at once. Take the time to learn about investing and start with small steps. What companies do you know and which ones are of interest to you as a person?
I will write a separate article on how to invest for beginners.
With investing, just like with an emergency fund, it’s important to start early and be consistent. You can gradually set aside a small amount or invest it directly, gradually building your investment portfolio. You regularly review this portfolio, monitor the performance of the company you invested in, and optimize it once a year. For example, you redirect funds from a less profitable company to a more potentially profitable company with lower risk of loss.


Financial stability is not just about our finances; it’s a mindset and a set of habits that differ from the usual lifestyle. To achieve such a goal, it is important to listen to oneself and be open to changing one’s perception, even though it may not always be easy.

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I wish you to always have your money, even in a zombie apocalypse!