On 8 March every year, International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated all over the world. This day is a great opportunity to reflect on what being a woman while celebrating the women’s achievements and success and their role in cultural, political, social and economic development. To enable them to grow from strength to strength, this year International Women’s Day is dedicated to women who #ChoosetoChallenge. This day aims to commemorate women who choose to challenge the odd norms of society, women who choose to challenge gender equality, women who choose to be financially independent and secure, women who courageously choose to challenge their fears, and women who have risen above all the hurdles that come in their way.
The life of a modern woman, whether she is working or single, a mother or a wife or a daughter, is multi-faceted. There are several other responsibilities that women take on, which are often overlooked and not accounted for, like managing her work life, household chores and taking care of the children and family. Women confidently take up all challenges to lead happy and empowered life. This Women’s Day it’s time for women to confidently choose to be financially independent for a secured life.
Vinit Kapahi, Head of Marketing, Aviva India suggests some ways for women to be financially secured.
- Make a list for your goals and spending – #ChooseWise
One should always plan to manage finances by reviewing the assets and liabilities and defining personal goals. it is important to prepare a budget for the coming year to be in better position to understand where the money is being spent and where one will undertake savings. Budgeting is the most important thing to be financially successful and take stock of exactly where one would spend and save, for instance saving for a new home or car or spending on child’s education or a dream holiday.
- Learn the art of Financial Planning – #ChooseToPlan
In today’s fast-paced world, it important for women to proactively take steps towards financial planning for a secured future. With added responsibilities like household chores and taking care of family, women do not get much time to work, and therefore have a fewer saving / investment year. Being insured and investing is crucial for them to feel respected, valued and secure. Good planning by the woman of the house of her own finances will make the family’s financial plan stronger to meet important life goals like buying a dream home, planning for the higher education of children etc. Financial planning is also critical for women to meet their own personal and professional aspirations, without depending on anyone.
- Don’t just save but invest wisely – #ChooseToInvest
There are a plethora of investment options available, so one should not let the money go stale in salary account. Saving money is good, but the smartest thing one can do is to let it grow through smart investment options. Investing helps in growing the saved money at a quicker rate. For a professional advice, one can seek a regulated financial adviser or open a separate savings account, invest in stock market or invest in an insurance plan that returns double the premium on maturity.
- Create an extra income- #ChooseExtra
Financial issues sometimes stem from insufficient income as opposed to spending issues. There is need to create extra source of income if one has issues making ends meet or sticking to the budget or personal spending. One should find a way to start making more money or alternatively, create a plan to cut down on current costs instead of spending all of it. More income tends to provide more financial stability, and the extra income generated can be used to pay off any debts, shorten the length of loan, save a little more towards retirement or will simply boost monthly finances.
- Secure your family’s future with right insurance products – #ChooseTermInsurance
Life is uncertain, and miseries often knock the door when one least expects them. One may have several financial priorities in life, but amidst all these, one can’t overlook the importance of securing the future of oneself and one’s loved ones. Assess the amount that family would require and be prepared for uncertain events in life with the right insurance products. A term insurance plan is extremely affordable yet provides comprehensive security to the insured and her family. It is an indispensable financial backup every person must have. If one is already covered with a health insurance policy, one can consider increasing the coverage. Additionally, opt for child plans to take care of a child’s dream, education or marriage.
- Build an emergency fund – #Challengetheuncertainity
An essential component of a solid plan is an emergency fund to cover financial shortfall on unexpected rainy days. Start with a smaller emergency fund depending upon the current income, number of earning members family and assets. Consider setting up automatic transfers from paychecks to a savings account but the emergency funds should be large enough to fuel monthly expenses for at least six months and should be liquid.
While one day will be not enough to truly champion the cause of women, Women’s Day is just a reminder that we can all begin somewhere to empower women. A world that is constantly challenged is an evolved and alert world ready to face new realities and to achieve new pinnacles. As we celebrate this International Women’s Day with the theme #ChoosetoChallenge, let’s all choose to challenge the status quo and emerge stronger and more confident.
Views expressed in this article are the personal opinion of Vinit Kapahi, Head of Marketing, Aviva India.