Basis Member In Focus: Sukanya Das - Financial Independence Is About Making Decisions Every Day.
“I grew up in a nuclear family and am the only child. Talks about money and independence were always a dinner time topic. My parents were always particular that I studied well and did well in life. Ultimately ‘doing well in life’ all boils down to earning well and having enough money. Both my parents made decisions at home. It was mostly segregated and divided, like for example, the expenses needed to run the house were taken care of by my mother, while my dad took over the larger expenses like a trip for the family.” “Money for me, came into the picture when I was in my 8th grade. I started understanding a lot more and so started taking part in conversations. But I think the turning point for me was when I finished college and left home to pursue my postgraduate studies. This was when I took out a loan to fund my education. Here I was on my own.”
“Over the years my relationship with my money has evolved. I suppose you’re not completely independent till such time as you live on your own. The experience is a whole different one. Here you budget everything. Right from repaying my loan, balancing out the SIPs I started and to look at the prices of onions and potatoes. Every little thing is your responsibility and every little expense sets you back from your financial goal. This is when I’d say I actually grew up. I started making a choice between ordering out, eating out with friends or staying in and cooking. Choosing between vegetables and staples, all of it - every little decision you make is independent and that’s what financial independence is!” “ I am an organised person. I love pulling out lists and putting things in order. So budgeting was also such an exciting exercise for me. ”
“I cannot stress how important emergency funds, planned funds and general savings are. I have witnessed these several times. There was a point when I had to take a sudden flight back home because my dad had suddenly fallen ill, this is when my emergency fund came to the rescue. I had saved up for an international trip with my family, this is when my planned trip came into play. Nobody is going to teach these things, these are things that we all learn by experience.” "For me, being independent is important. I want to be able to build a secure future for myself. This means systematically saving up and building assets. I recently took up a loan and got myself my own apartment. I have never been prouder. This is a roof over my head and an investment for my future. I am also learning to manage expenses better. Sometimes when I see that there is an imbalance in the expenses for that month, I re-budget my EMIs, SIPs and the expenses. This is a constant learning exercise."
"I think that I have become a little more confident over the years. My friends jokingly say 'you should manage your money'. Many of them are spendthrifts and I help them keep that balance." "I think women are not really given the opportunity to manage their money. Everyone can do it, they just need to be given that chance. Like for example, the first workplace of mine had a work shift of 5:30 AM to 2:30 PM. I was the only woman in that shift. They simply wouldn't hire women because they assumed nobody would want that job. Similarly, there was an offsite project where not a single woman was selected. I was in business development and wanted in on that project. I had to fight to prove my space there." " I am not entirely saying that the onus is on the company alone. As women, we also shy away from difficult situations. Just as nurturing a child is not the responsibility of only the mother, equality is also a double-sided coin where we all, as women, need to voice ourselves and be brave enough to take on challenges."
“I came across Basis through the FB group. I love apps that are designed to solve problems. What Basis is solving for - enabling financial independence for women, that got me excited. I signed up and was thrilled to get the yearly planner. I constantly try to learn something new, and this was a space that nurtured just that!”
Sukanya, today is one of Basis' most active users.