Most people I speak with aren't thrilled to start our money talks. Some people feel anxious and stressed because that is what they are used to feeling when it comes to money. They want things to change but they also acknowledge that this change isn't going to be easy or occur overnight.
It can be a reluctance to downgrade their lifestyle or fear of facing the consequences of their mistakes from their past. Everyone has their own reasons for avoiding their finances.
Knowing you have a challenging task ahead can be a deterrent or make the task appear intimidating. Money challenges are no different. People can be intimidated of facing money issues because there's so much stigma about money conversations and if you have money issues you're somehow "less-than" or you're doing something "wrong". Most of my clients have learned good money habits through trail and error, so you're not alone. No one wakes up knowing the best financial habits.
The way you approach this challenge is actually more important to your success than what you do. Mindset is a huge part of change and you have to believe that if you put in the hard work necessary to make yourself financially independent, you will get there.
Here are some tips to get you started:
Keep a diary of your daily purchases for 2 weeks (4 weeks, if you can stick to it!), if you've never focused on your spending habits. This will give you an idea of your spending patterns and what you need to budget each month for things like food and clothes.
Put a budget together that is realistic enough to be achievable, but aggressive enough to make progress towards your goals.
Check-in periodically during the month to update your progress. A good day to review your progress is payday, you can have a peace of mind that everything is taken care of until your next payday.
At the end of the month, check in with your expectations for the month. Look at areas where you can improve and think how you can use this information to create a more realistic budget for the following month.
In the beginning, some months will be easier than others, until you find you balance. Remember that this process is important for you to learn what type of budget works for you.
To grow we will to experience some uncomfortable feelings and stress but in the end it will be worth it. I will leave you with this video about growth:
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