When you think about it, no one should care more about the health of your finances than you do. However, if you don’t care enough about your money, then your money (or the lack of it) will control you.
Let’s be clear, caring is not about wishing you had more money, nor about becoming a tightwad, nor fretting about your unpaid bills. Instead, it’s about researching how to manage your money better so that you can resolve any pressing financial problems you might be experiencing.
Your entire life will change for the better when you make caring about your finances a priority.
Here are six ways to get better at taking charge of your money:
- Become the CFO of your home. Approach the entire business of managing your household finances as if you were the Chief Financial Officer of a corporation. As a CFO, you must wisely budget, spend, save, insure, and invest your corporation’s finances. It’s up to you to manage cash flow and start long-term plans.
- Restructure your debt. When you’re struggling with debt such as credit card payments or medical bills, it’s easy to feel helpless. But this is a self-imposed fallacy. Many, many people in a similar situation as yours have restructured their debts by getting a debt consolidation loan. A debt consolidation loan is restructuring your debt through a third-party lender. Silvertail Associates, for example, will give you a loan that’s big enough to pay off all your debts immediately. Then, you’ll only pay them and not the credit card companies, hospital, or other creditors. Better still, you’ll not only make a single payment to this single account once a month, but you’ll only pay an “affordable” amount, one that you have calculated after you’ve reviewed your income and living expenses.
- Find a job that offers paid sick leave. If you often have to call in sick because of health issues, then you are under the additional stress of losing money when you’re not able to work. However, you don’t always have to go in to work at the expense of jeopardizing your physical health. If your current job won’t pay you when you’re sick, find a job that pays sick leave. Work for a company that respects your right to take care of your health without going broke.
- Start an emergency fund. It’s always a good idea to build an emergency fund. First, set a goal to save for three months. Once you reach it, you’ll have the confidence to save enough to cover six months of living expenses.
- Create a budget. It’s hard to make any financial progress when you only have a vague idea about your expenses. A budget lets you know exactly how much money is coming in and going out of your bank account every single month. A budget can work for everyone. It can work for people with a predictable salary from a regular job and for those with an inconsistent paycheck, such as salespeople.
- Learn to say “no.” Learning to say “no” will make a huge difference in helping you manage your money. You may need to say it to yourself when you want to buy something but plan to put it on your credit card because you can’t afford it. You may also need to say it to your friends when you get invited out, but need to spend the time to work to stay ahead of your expenses.
Think of Personal Finance as Self-Care
Personal finance isn’t just about taking care of your money, it’s also about taking care of you. Consider it a form of self-care. For instance, it’s as important as taking care of your health. When you don’t eat properly, seldom exercise, and don’t get enough sleep, your health suffers. Similarly, when you overspend, seldom save, and don’t know how to invest, your finances suffer.