Well, this series was supposed to be all fun but this particular post may take on a serious tone.
Let’s talk about that thing called SALARY!
That’s why I’d like to share some of the insight I’ve acquired, mostly by experience with you.
Since I’m no expert, this post is as good for me as it is for any Newbie House Officer.
That said, let’s dig in.
Now that you have a job, it feels like you have finally arrived.
It is not funny when a few months into HouseJob you start going broke left and right, and just as you finish clearing one debt, another one accumulates.
Here are a few tips that have helped me stay financially sane:
1. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND
Trust me on this one, your salary can develop invisible wings and fly away overnight.
As a doctor, you should have clear-cut SALARY GOALS.
And the best time to decide that is before you earn your first salary!
What are your immediate Post House-Job plans?
*Write Primaries for residency in Nigeria?
*Take a well-deserved trip to Dubai?
*Buy a Car?
Whatever it is, you’ll probably need a substantial amount to follow through.
The average Naija Houseofficer has a “take-home” of 100k (minus taxes and other deductions).
So what will you do with all that money?
Spend it all? Or Save some of it?
What will be your Spending:Saving Ratio?
60:40 is comfortable and works well for me.
So find out what works for you, and make it work.
Now that you’re earning your own pay, it’s wise for you to have a basic budget.
It’s hard to plan a budget, it’s even harder to follow through.
The goodnews is that a budget should serve as your guide and not your master.
Before that alert hits your phone, get a pen/notepad and write out your budget.
* How much goes for feeding/groceries?
* How much for utilities? transport? rent?
* How about emergencies?
Having a budget may not make sense to you initially, but soon you’ll realize its importance.
3. BE GENEROUS BUT APPLY WISDOM
In some families, a doctor is seen as a beacon of hope to alleviate all forms of financial distress.
While there is nothing wrong with meeting some of the financial needs of your loved ones, don’t throw caution to the wind and think you can solve every money related problem that arises.
You’re not the GREAT Provider.
It is even more tricky for guys, when “baes” of different sizes and shapes are involved.
Bros, your name is not Santa Claus. Receive sense in Jesus’ name!
Before you became a doctor, there were needs. Now that you’re a doctor, there are needs.
God forbid that you lose your medical license or fall ill, there will still be needs.
Wisdom, is profitable to direct.
4. BEWARE OF 419
Everyone wants to get richer and doctors are no exception.
Doctors are easy targets to scammers in the name of investors.
I’m no expert in the world of Multilevel marketing or Cryptocurrency, but I’ve seen people put in a whole lot of money with zero returns.
It can be devastating.
My point is, don’t say YES to every invitation to invest. Double check any idea you’re being offered and do your home work before you launch in.
May you not fall a victim of 419. Amen.
5. DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY.
When all is said and done, your present salary is not enough to fulfill all your future dreams.
It’s very tempting to want to save to the last kobo and live like a peasant during housejob.
That however is unwise.
You’re not in this world to suffer.
You worked hard for this money (remember the many years you spent studying tirelessly in school), so you deserve to enjoy it.
Flex a little. Shop for some new clothes or shoes. Go on a mini-vacation. Give yourself a treat from time to time.
Don’t WORRY about the future. After all, no one is guaranteed of tomorrow.
Save what you can. Give what you can. Invest what you can.
And spend the rest like a boss.
6. MONEY IS NOT EVERYTHING.
You know this.
I know this.
We all know this.
But for some weird reason(s), we like to think/act the opposite.
As if everything depends on money.
You worth much more than your pay check. Remember this.
So even if you don’t earn enough, to save, invest or spend as you like-the value of your life is definitely more important to God than your salary.
For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it. Ecclesiastes 7:12 KJV