Income Level: Which World Do You Live In?

Income level is the primary variable determining a payroll prisoner’s standard of living. Very few lucky people inherit any meaningful wealth from their parents. Unfortunately, income level is also decisive in the journey to financial independence. The way to achieve financial freedom quickly is to achieve a high savings rate. However, your disposable income level must be adequate to achieve higher savings. Otherwise, you have to spend most of your salary to survive. For example, a few years ago, I saved a significant portion of my income. Honestly, I’m having a hard time doing that this year. It is not difficult to guess why. As the purchasing power of the Turkish lira deteriorates, my actual income decreases. In 2022 my salary decreased by 35% in dollars compared to one year ago. Moreover, this is just a loss in the last year…

Income level and the world you live in

For the past few days, I have been reading “Factfulness: Ten Reasons We’re Wrong About the World and Why Things Are Better Than You Think” whenever I can. An eye-opening book. The book’s author says that the human species has made significant progress in the last 50 years. It implies that we should look at the forest, not the trees. In doing so, it uses statistics and simple graphics. He argues that the idea that everything is going wrong in the world that most of us feel from time to time is partly due to the way our brains work. In other words, he emphasizes that our brain, which gives us an advantage in the evolutionary process, can mislead us in the modern world. I recommend you to read it. It makes you look at the world more objectively.

Inhabited world

Photo by House Method on Unsplash

One of the parts of the book that caught my attention was the photograph of the bedrooms of families with the same income level in 12 geographically, culturally, and religiously different countries. Almost all of them contain a similarly furnished double bed. The same can be said for stoves and toilets. In other words, the author says that what determines the daily life of approximately 8 billion people in which income group. What country you live in, religion, culture, etc., things don’t matter much. As a matter of fact, the World Bank, which was established to combat poverty globally, classifies human societies according to income.

Photo by Sawyer Bengtson on Unsplash
Photo by Nick Karvounis on Unsplash

The book defines four different income levels: (1) less than $2 per day, (2) between $2 and $8, (3) between $8 and $32, and (4) greater than $32. As of 2017, the approximate population of those living in the first level is 1 billion. Similarly, the high-income population of people living in level four is roughly that much. The remaining 5 billion people live between these two extremes. 3 billion at the second level and two billion at the third level.

Same country, different lives

The World Bank classifies countries by per capita income. For example, Turkey corresponds to the high middle-income class with $9,690, according to 2019 data. Although, as of the end of 2021, this average value has dropped quite a bit… Anyway, this average income level can also be misleading. Because while some of us have income far above this average, some are far below this average. For example, I’m on the third level with my current income. Until a few years ago, I was living on the fourth level. So I was among the lucky few billions.

In conclusion

Photo by Mikel Parera on Unsplash

Things can go badly in Turkey or in your own country. However, the world as a whole is getting better. The average citizen has no means of influencing the course of events except at the ballot box. However, on an individual level, we still have a chance to change our lives positively. In particular, it would be better for our younger friends to consider increasing their income as much as saving and investing. In this context, they must acquire the knowledge and skills in demand worldwide. I advise those who have this equipment to think globally, not locally. There are more than 200 countries on this planet. We only come to life once. It does no one any good for you to endure manufactured misery among the mediocre.

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