You know that to be successful at anything, you need to approach it with a plan and with goals and deadlines to achieve them. This is true for your home and work life, and it’s equally true with your financial life. Whenever you attempt to just “wing it” at something, it never turns out as well as it would have had you spent time with it and been prepared. Start managing your money and stop just “winging it.”
Build your knowledge
Learning a new skill requires you to learn as much as you can about it. Finances are the same. Get a clear picture of your finances by getting a copy of your credit report. Also, create an expense worksheet so you can see where your money is going every month.
There are so many great online tools to help you manage your finances. Use your financial institutions online money budgeting software if available or use Mint or Quicken. Start paying your bills online so you have an electronic history.
To be successful, you need something to work towards. Money is no different. If you don’t have goals, you won’t have incentive to pay off debt, to save for your children’s college or retirement. Start with where you see yourself in 5 years and what you can do to get there.
Keep on track
If you have direct deposit, write checks, pay bills and never view your account, you won’t be able to take control of your finances. View your account statements, sign up for account alerts, and review and update your budget regularly.
Ask for help
In sports, you have a coach; at work, you have a mentor. It helps to have someone that is a financial accountability partner to keep you on track. Ask a friend who has done well managing his/her finances for help. Your local credit union or bank representative can be a great resource to share your struggles and goals with as well.
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Categories: Budgeting, Finances, Saving, Spending