Nia Loos
5 min readJul 30, 2020


Living the Kakebo Lifestyle — The beginning …

Financial Freedom, what’s that?

Have you ever heard about Financial freedom? I bet you have. Now in these uncertain times this idea of living a financially free life and having a save heaven is even more attractive. Financial freedom means doing whatever you want with your time. As Socrates once said “Money does bring happiness.” But how much money one has is not as important as using what one has to reduce stress. When having enough money in the bank, you could shift your expenses around your most pressing needs and include some new payments to outsourcing household duties or childcare duties you don’t like, and freeing up more time for other activities or just minimise your own future financial uncertainties.

Over 70% of people are worried that they will not have enough savings to support themselves once they retire. Isn’t that crazy? On the one hand everyone wants to save money but on the other hand, you need to sacrifice a bit of your slandrous life and reshuffle other financial expenses. Not everyone is willing to make that hard of a decision just for a bit more wiggle room. Did you know, that barely seven of every 100 euros earned, find their way to people’s piggy banks?

Still, books about financial freedom and Podcasts about the fact that money could finally buy you happiness are booming. The collective anxiety surrounding saving seems to gain more and more popularity. This is also imminent due to the uncertainty we currently face — an unexpected pandemic and an even more uncertain final end of this pandemic.

Now, more than ever it is crucial to save money. As people are loosing their jobs, the future is even more uncertain and the job market has plugged gaping holes in our prosperity. How to afford housing, food or other basic needs? How real is the division between the haves and the have nots when comparing heaps of debt for most of us versus a fat little piggy bank to cushion our sorrows on?

Me and the Kakebo lifestyle are here to help you!

My passion and mission is to empower women and men to gain financial literacy and on living a stress free live through saving, earning passive income and having the financially free future they deserve.

Saving, why?

Did you know, that especially woman face a significantly higher risk of ending in poverty when getting older? The losses through the average years of staying at home, having no income compound, everyone will tend to have less money available.

Even bigger are the cultural difference in savings, which are onmni present. In the Western world we are buying a lot of material stuff for instant gratification, even if we don’t need all of the bought clothes, furnitures, cosmetics or other beautiful items. Some of us may have read Marie Kondo’s Book and decluttered the whole house, realising how many unnecessary items we have and how we could have saved all of these consumption goods. But in far Eastern countries people are raised with a completely different mindset on financials and are more worried about unexpected expenses. They have to pay for all of the services they consume. From a very early age they learn to set money away, just in case. In Europe compared to the US most students, don’t have huge student debts, because the university is mostly free of costs or cost only a little. This helps at least to start mostly debt free in the so called “earning life”.

Now my debate isn’t about not earning enough money nor of irresponsible spending practices, but rather of not knowing where the money goes. Unfortunately, the more we earn, the more we spend. A nice balcony chair here, a nice sale item for our kid there. When starting to ask friends or colleagues about their saving habits you will receive completely different answers. Some have already a financial mindset which includes healthy savings and passive income and some others don’t even want to know or talk about their real costs as they could face reality as well as consumer debts with it.

Therefore, I honestly urge you to start rethinking your finanical habits and your relationship with money. Now is the time to change, it is never to late!! Never just believe that things will get better. Unless you make it better, nothing will ever happen.

Living a Kakebo lifestyle?

I will help you fixing your bad financial habits! Let’s start with a Japanese woman journalist named Motoko Hani (1873–1957) who designed a self-awareness tool in large part to empower woman at the beginning of the 20th century. At a time, woman were not permitted to work outside of the family home in Tokyo and were only able to save for themselves whatever was left over from their husbands income once all domestic expenses had been paid. For these woman, a proper financial household management was the key to freedom and financial security. The first publication of Kakebo was in 1904, generating such a profound impact that only four decades later the concept boasted its own user association. What a great inspiring woman! Thank you Motoko!

Now in Japan this style is already inhabited in the culture but not so in the European way of living. Once again through the current crisis, this is more important then ever.

So lets start with some practical tips: At the start of each month, sit down and write all of your income and fixed expenses on a papersheet or on an envelope. Once that’s done, you know what’s left for spending and what’s left for saving. If you have to pay off debt, set a certain amount aside immediatly. This will help you pay off your debts within a short period of time. Start small, better 10 EUR or even 100 EUR each month, then nothing or later a bigger sum. And no don’t even think of doing this later! START NOW!! If you start different small piles of money, you will realise it is like a snowball effect, it will get bigger and bigger over time. By starting to write down your income and in the next step creating a budget that works for you, you will immediately see a shift in your finacial mindset.

So what matters most when talking about the Kakebo lifestyle?

  • Awareness of your expenses
  • Consistency in piling up money
  • Simplicity in living
  • Mastery your finances

So how do you get started?

Great question! Are you curious and excited on how to live the Kakebo lifestyle and finally get started with your own finances?

I am currently writing a book about Living the Kakebo lifestyle, if you are interested in the first chapter and why financial future is female, please join my email list and get notified before the release.



Nia Loos

Proud European, Wife and Mother of three kids, Inspirational Writer in financial and women topics. Aiming to positively impact and inspire the world.