Money is hard to manage for many of us. This is why we still have people who are feeling the recession, who are losing their homes and cannot get back on their feet when they lose their jobs. If we all had some ‘thick’ savings, the story would be different.
Here are some of the things that make it difficult for you to go from one month to another without empty pockets
1. You’re always in debt
Most people have a mortgage, car payments and maybe student loans. It’s not ideal, but for some this is the way to get a head start in life. What if you’re still borrowing money from friends and relatives? What if, aside these ‘big’ debt, you’re getting in some small money ‘obligations’? STOP IT NOW! Stop asking for money, learn how to live paycheck to paycheck without getting yourself into bigger debt.
2. Your credit card is your master
I know you have some good deals with your credit card, I know you love shopping even when you actually don’t have the money for this. MANY Americans are now in HUGE debt because they’re doing the same. Get yourself a debit card or set your credit card with ZERO overdraft. Ouch, that will mean you can’t buy a new plasma TV and pay for the next 12 months for it. It will mean you have to be disciplined, because the bank will not release a cent, if it’s not first in your account.
We are not disciplined ‘animals’ and this really helps.
3. You buy to feel better or just because it makes you happy
Deal with your problems in another way. Start yoga, go to a therapist, have more sex. Anything, but shopping sprees. If you know you can’t stop from buying useless junk, just don’t go to the store. We were in Spain, the past 2 months. On January 6th a HUGE sale week started (I assume it’s more than a week, anyway). Amazing prices for everything you can think of.
My sister-in-law went to El Corte Ingles (some sort of a Macy’s for them) and invited me to go along. I know I cannot see those hot prices without buying something and, since I’ve already set myself to save more money, the outcome was clear to me: I wouldn’t get out of there without a huge gap in my finances. So I didn’t go.
If I know I need something, then I visit the store. if not, there’s better ways to relax then visit stores.
4. Trying to outshine your neighbors
I have seen many people almost broke just because they were in a constant ‘contest’ with their neighbors and relatives. Don’t do this. You are YOU. Save money for your FUTURE, don’t squander it for a bigger TV, even if yours is already excellent. Don’t buy 6 cars (as one of my neighbor) only to keep the parking space occupied and lose money on insurance and all other expenses.
I find myself being looked ‘weirdly’ by some of my relatives or neighbors who cannot understand why I don’t dress ‘appropriate’ or drive a huge car. I can afford it, can’t I. Yes, but I like my money to be saved, spent for my business or spent traveling. I’d rather have the experience of seeing a good part of the world and bettering myself, than wear a $500 purse, when my camera (I wouldn’t need a purse for other than carrying my DSLR) easily fits in a $40 second-hand camera rucksack I got from ebay.
Learn the VALUE of your money and try to manage it better. Having money in your accounts means you’re facing ‘tomorrow’ better, no matter how that tomorrow looks like.
What other habits do you think leave us broke?