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Are you tired of being in debt? Sick of wondering just where it is that your money goes every month?
Are you ready to see real change?
If you’re ready for a new perspective on money, then it’s time to change your mindset for 2019: namely, instead of struggling with your money, it’s time for you to start telling it what to do! Try some of these strategies to improve your 2019 money mindset and make this your best financial year yet.
Write a budget. No, budget isn’t a bad word. A budget simply gives you a clear view of how much money you have coming in, what’s going out on bills and other important payments, and how you can better shape your spending to pay your bills on time and avoid debt.
Improve your credit score. Loans aren’t necessarily bad things. The goal is to avoid going into debt that you can’t pay. In 2019, commit to simple steps like paying off your credit cards each month and making all of your monthly payments on time.
Get a handle on your existing debt. Do you have credit card debt piling up, or student loans hanging over your head? This year, try focusing on paying down that debt. Commit some of your budget to paying off a little more of your smallest debt each month. Then, when you’ve paid that one off, move on to the next one.
Talk about money with your spouse. Many couples avoid the money discussion altogether because they’re afraid it will lead to a fight. Instead, try clearly and consciously discussing financial management with your spouse. Make sure you’re on the same page. It’s easier to meet your financial goals when you work toward them together.
Learn how to adjust your budget. Your expenses won’t look the same every month. Holiday shopping, for example, probably did a number on your carefully-planned budget in 2018. Family vacations can do the same. Instead of letting that derail your plans, learn how to shift your budget each month depending on your changing needs.
Leave in some fun money. Let’s face it: you’re not going to stick to a budget that never lets you have any fun. Make sure there’s room for fun, impulse spending to keep yourself on track.
Save more. A common principle states that your budget should be divided into pieces: 50% or less for fixed expenses, 30% or less for variable expenses, and 20% to savings, both long-term and short-term. Make your New Year’s resolution this year to build your savings account and experience the benefits.
Learn the difference between “needs” and “wants.” You need food, shelter, and water. You want an expensive new pair of running shoes. When you learn to tell the difference, you make it easier to budget effectively.
Identify financial priorities. There are some things in life that are simply more important than others, whether it’s paying for a class or catering to a hobby. Pay attention to those priorities and make sure that your budget is in line with them–after your crucial bills are paid, of course.
Find a method that works for you. Do you do better by putting cash in separate envelopes each paycheck to pay your bills, rather than using checks or automatic payments? Can you track your funds on a debit card (check) register? If you can track your finances, add to your savings account, and avoid overspending, use the method that works for you, not the one that works for your parents or your best friend.
2019: it’s a fresh slate and an opportunity to start fresh. This year, shift your money mindset so that you’re dictating your finances, rather than the other way around. You may be astonished by the change a simple shift in perspective can make in your life!
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