Would you agree our society is consumer-driven? Arent we bombarded with advertisements when we watch TV, listen to the radio or surf the Internet? Dont companies spend millions in research to determine how we think, shop and live? After all our everyday choices at the mall or grocery store mean billions to their bottom line! Isnt it easy to see how these natural forces of free commerce distract us from our financial goals, and even lead us into debt? In spite of this, it is possible to achieve financial success.
What do we mean by financial success? Financial success is living within ones means, eliminating debt and saving for ones financial goals. It means planning and implementing a plan to meet all expenses and save for a rainy day including retirement.
What Does It Take? If you are like most Americans, you probably know very little about how to manage your finances. You probably spent months or years training for your profession, and now youre too busy earning a living to take the time to manage your finances. You may even be so far in debt that you think it is impossible to get out of your rut and find financial success. However, no matter what your income level, you can achieve financial security if you take time to learn a few simple principles about money and budgeting.
Its Up to You Life is different today than it was yesterday. Lack of job security, dwindling pension plans and a strained Social Security system has added retirement to our long list of financial worries. Even dual-income families find it difficult to meet present needs, much less save for future ones. Now more than ever, its crucial we make a personal decision to manage our finances. Its up to you to put a stake in the ground and do what it takes to find financial success. The benefits are tremendous.
How Do I Begin? Most people have too much month left at the end of the money! At first glance, you may think you dont have any extra money to help your financial situation. Most families feel they do well just to pay the bills and keep their heads above water. Dont give up. There is hope. You can look for ways to begin your savings goals now. If you are like most people, you are spending money on things that you could say no too and sacrifice a little to reap a big reward later. Do you know where your money goes every month? Begin with a budget. Identify your known monthly expenses. Identify your monthly income. Jot down where your money goes for one month. At the end of the month you will probably have a real eye-opener. Its amazing how the little things add up to big dollars. Ask yourself if you are happy with the way you spent your income for the month. Identify where you can change some spending habits.
I Dont Have Any Extra Money Are you procrastinating in keeping a budget and tracking how you spend your money? Have you already said, I dont and wont have any extra money? So do you really want financial success? Do you really want to save money for that something special and do you really want to save money for your retirement goals? In seven to ten years every dollar saved doubles and in fourteen to eighteen years it triples. The compounding of interest gains momentum like a snowball rolling down the hill. What do you buy on a daily basis that you could pay less for? For example; suppose you and your spouse each buy two cans of soda at ($1.00 each) from the vending machine at work each dayone for lunch and one for the afternoon break. $1.00 per soda X 4 sodas per day = $4 X 20 work days a month = $80 spend on sodas. Over one year that totals $960. Could you buy your soda at the grocery store for less or could you eliminate the soda habit and drink water which is free. The better question to ask is, Are you willing to change your spending habits and life style for the more lofty goal of financial success?
Conclusion It is possible to achieve financial success if you are willing to plan a budget , adjust your lifestyle, and establish money priorities. Along with setting priorities comes one tough rule of life: you cant have everything. You have to make conscious decisions about your purchases. You can be successful. All it takes is a determination to start and once you start, stick with your plan. With that you will be on your way to experiencing the secrets of financial success.