The Number 1 thing you HAVE TO do and MUST do is to setup an automatic system saving a portion of your income into a seperate account.
Any money you receive is an income, no matter active or passive; no matter if you work for it or not. You should even treat pocket money like Ang Pao as an income, housewife should keep some household expense aside for personal finance purpose etc. as describe in an old post. Review the early post about income here and a controversial discussion about income with reference to Rich Dad Poor Dad.
This is not a normal personal finance post asking you to save first and use later. The focus is on Automatic Saving System and This is the CRITICAL turning point whether you will make it or NOT !
Understanding this concept doesn't count, excusing you don't have a job now also doesn't count. You are already saving some money in some mutual funds manually or you are already buying golds also doesn't count. Nothing else count unless you already have it setup.
Finance consultants who are still asking you to make finance goals, asking you to be more discipline etc. all are less important from praticality perspective. Because history has proven all those people are still failing to become finance independant despite all the goals they set and discipline they tried to improve.
On the other hand, people who started without any goals nor any discipline, do not understand mutual fund, property, gold nor stocks investment; but setup such an automated saving system immediately increasing their chance to reach finance independance by 80% !!