Every single one of us has to do money management frequently.
You need to earn money, save money, and spend money, which shows that you need to manage it in some way.
For many people, this idea gives them chills of fear—they don’t want to face their financial reality. If you don’t know what’s happening with your money, then you cannot use it properly or plan for the future.
We know it can be a challenge, but you deserve wealth instead of scraping by, so we have compiled three tips to help you get control of your financial situation.
1. Set Achievable Money Goals
When you want to do anything in life, you need to set goals so that you know the direction you are heading, what you want, and how you will achieve it. Goals can start out as basic ideas, but you need to add more detail to ensure you have a workable plan.
Determine What’s Important
What are your money goals?
That’s quite a big question.
You might have some ideas like paying off your debt, saving for retirement, or improving your credit score. Whatever you might be thinking, it’s necessary to dive a bit deeper.
Think about what is important to you to help you determine where your financial focus should be. For example, if you want to save money, what are you saving it for? Is it for a holiday, a down payment on a property, or to retire comfortably?
Write down a list of the financial goals you want to achieve.
Add a Time Estimate
You already have some idea about your monthly and annual income and expenses—even if you don’t have a proper budget. The goals you created have to fit into your current financial situation.
Go through your list of financial goals and determine whether each one is a short-term, medium-term, or long-term goal. Estimate how much time it will take you to achieve each goal. You should be realistic about the time it will take; otherwise, you are setting yourself up for disappointment.
Adding a time estimate shouldn’t discourage you from any goal. It might highlight that your goals are ambitious or that you need to find money somewhere, but don’t discard a goal because it seems as if the odds are stacked against you.
Consider Your Budget
Grab your budget, or draw one up if you haven’t done so yet, and determine how your financial goals fit into it. Investigate your budget carefully to see if you can achieve your goals or whether you need to make adjustments.
As you go through your budget, look for areas where you can cut down on spending or make more income. These are crucial numbers to identify, as they will help you to achieve your goals.
You might find that you need to adjust your budget or your goals to make things work—that’s okay and necessary. You will also need to check your budget and progress toward your goal frequently, so get used to making this comparison.
Break It Down
Now that you have a timeline and understand how your goals fit into your budget, you need to come up with a plan to achieve them. The best way to do this is by breaking your goals into smaller milestones.
Take your goal and see how you can split it up into manageable pieces.
For instance, if you plan on saving $60,000 over the next five years, then it would require $12,000 of savings annually. This can be broken down further to $1,000 per month and $250 per week. The smaller number seems much easier to achieve and works toward your bigger goal.
Overcome Your Fear of Finances
Every fear you have comes from the way your brain is programmed. You have taught it to fear money matters, so it is stuck in a cycle that you need to break.
Learn how to change your brain to change your income at the Brain-A-Thon. It will teach you to retrain your brain so that you can get more out of it.
2. Celebrate Money Wins With Rewards
If you succeed at doing something tough, then it’s natural to do a little victory dance or celebrate in some way. The same goes when you overcome your fear of finances: It should be acknowledged when you reach a milestone and when you achieve your overall goal.
Track Your Progress
Write down each financial goal in your journal so that you can monitor your progress toward it. You could even print out a separate page to act as a reward chart if you want.
Capture every milestone you achieve in some way on the same page. You could tick off a block every week when you transferred money to a specific account, or add a sticker for every $100 you pay off in debts.
It’s up to you how you do your tracking, but don’t skip this step. Seeing your progress visually ignites personal competitiveness, keeps you motivated during challenging times, and ultimately helps you overcome your fear of finances.
Celebrate Small Victories
As you meet a milestone, you should reward yourself for your achievement. Decide ahead of time what reward you will give yourself so that you don’t suddenly splurge money on something unnecessary.
If it’s a small milestone, then a sticker or check mark could be enough of a reward already. Larger milestones or reaching a goal deserve more recognition.
You could buy yourself a book or enrol for a short course. Consider celebrating with friends or sharing your achievement on social media.
Visualize the End Goal
Sometimes, you might not meet your milestones. It’s normal to fall behind occasionally, but you can’t let this get you down.
You need to get back on track as quickly as possible—even if you feel discouraged. It helps to ponder what you are working toward in these moments.
Close your eyes and visualize yourself achieving your goal. Add color, sounds, and smells to the image. Immerse yourself in the scene and name how you are feeling in the moment. Hold on to those feelings and let them inspire you to work harder.
It Goes Beyond Finances
Goals and fears are a part of life. You have to deal with both in some way, but how you do it is up to you.
Over the years, you might have learned some bad habits and limiting beliefs about both issues. You can change this quite easily because your brain is neuroplastic; it can learn new things and discard old ideas.
Not all of us are financially savvy—that’s okay. It’s why we have articles like this one to read, courses we can take, and professionals to help us.
If you feel at the end of the tether with your finances or believe you can’t manage it on your own, then it is time to look to other people for help and advice.
Financial advisors can help you get your money matters under control. They will help you sort out your budget, look at your current financial situation, and come up with a plan to get you where you want to be.
It can be challenging to approach an advisor, but it’s something you have to do if you want a better life. These professionals see the finances of various people on a daily basis, so they are in the best position to help you. They know the strategies that work and can create a custom plan for you.
Contact your local bank to schedule an appointment with an advisor or search for an independent one. Remember: You can also look to other financial professionals for advice. People such as brokers, insurance agents, and accountants can all be of assistance.
Mentors and Coaches
Both mentors and coaches can help you achieve your financial goals faster. They will provide you with guidance—even if they aren’t financial experts because they focus on your abilities and desires for your life.
Mentors and coaches will help you formulate a financial plan (just as with any other goals) and check in with you frequently. They will hold you accountable for your progress and celebrate victories with you.
Build Better Money Habits
Ultimately, the idea of any professional help is to provide you with knowledge that you might not have on your own. Experts give you the road map to financial success, but you still have to put in the effort.
Over time, professionals will teach you better money habits that will stick with you for life. Getting expert advice a single time can be remarkable already—imagine what continuous help can do for your finances.
Become a Money Management Pro
You are so close to managing your finances properly if you are willing to think differently about your situation. It’s time for you to change your perception and your brain so that you can earn more, live more, be more, and give more.
Experience financial abundance like never before. All you need to do is attend the Brain-A-Thon, and the tools you need will be at your fingertips.
About The Author
NeuroGym Team: NeuroGym’s Team of experts consists of neuroscientists, researchers, and staff who are enthusiasts in their fields. The team is committed to making a difference in the lives of others by sharing the latest scientific findings to help you change your life by understanding and using the mindset, skill set and action set to change your brain.
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