Man Your Finances
You have lost your job and that means zero income. Okay maybe you have a side hustle, but it's not bringing in enough. You are worried, scared and even a bit angry. What do you do?
For many, this is the time where worry and fear kick in; we are unsure where rent will come from or the coverage for utility bills. You are not alone, it was reported in 2017 by Marketwatch that 31% of Americans have less and than $500 in emergency savings and sadly 19% of us have $0 to cover emergencies.
We all have jobs or have had one some point in our lifetime and whether you were fired or quit one factor remains the same. You will need money, some form of income flowing in, while you wait for those emails to roll in. And for some, it takes months, on average six months to secure a job after losing one. That' s a long time when you have little savings and even longer time when you don't. It may seem like ages.
It will not be long before your swimming in debt.
We all face some type of financial hardship, we can't always avoid the tide, we can only choose to better prepare. Personal finance is not as difficult as we have been told, it's not all fancy excel sheets and does not always require a financial planner (though for some it is necessary).
1. Earn a penny, save a penny
Many think they don't make enough to save, it is a myth. It must be defunct.
In fact, only 1 in 5 people facing financial hardship fall below the poverty line and make less than $40K. So, that leaves us to wonder what are we really doing with our money. Even if you earn $10 you have enough to save, all it takes is 10% of your earned income. Yes, it's one dollar but think of how much a dollar is worth when you don' have it. As women, we seem to do more of the spending than saving. Think about it.
Have you noticed how much marketing is geared towards women. They will stop at anything to get our dollar. Your have power no matter how much you make. Trust me.
2. What are your deal breakers?
Everyone has one, is it your weekly pedi, movie night or a night out with girlfriends. Know what you are unwilling to part with and reward yourself accordingly. Try tools like mint, it is a favorite of mine. It breaks down everything by category and is searchable; so you can see where your money is really going monthly.
Don't relinquish your deal-breakers, they are the best motivators but please be reasonable with what you prioritize. Your morning Starbucks is not a deal-breaker especially when you own a coffee maker.
3. Give! Give!
Sounds crazy, but it works. When we are tied to a cause, we don't want to let them down. Many give to their local church but whether you are religious or not, pay your tithes. You give, the universe rewards you. It's all about synergy.
4. Pay what you owe.
Buying, shopping is all about a high; we feel happy when we are swiping, looking, trying. That feeling has been ingrained in us that's why we have closets full of clothes with tags on them and shoes we never wear. Products we use once.
Once that high is gone, we go back trying to find that again. It's a vicious cycle. Replace that feeling with accomplishment. Much of our spending habits have more to do with psychology than money.
Making a payment on your cc or debt is brutal but there is a sense of accomplishment that is unmet when you see your debt number going down. You begin to crave it much like spending.
5. Be True To Yourself
We get into debt trying to keep up with the Joneses not knowing that even the Joneses are trying to keep up with their Joneses. Take time to reflect on your desires and goals.
What are you looking to accomplish? Is it a vacation you want or peace of mind?
Give yourself room to just enjoy your process, pace yourself.
The whole point of personal finance is that it is personal and it must reflect your goals and needs as an individual.
It's your money, start controlling it.
As always, Peace, Love + Great Coffee.