Many people who are struggling to keep up with debt just do the best they can to pay their bills and hope it all works out in the long run. They may not have a budget or know exactly where their money goes each month, which can cause undue stress. Whether finances have always been difficult for you or you suffered some kind of financial setback, spending some time thinking about your relationship with money can be helpful and empowering.
Making a Plan
Theodore Roosevelt said, “comparison is the thief of joy,” and this is absolutely true. If you spend time comparing your situation to how things used to be or what other people’s lives look like, you will surely be disappointed. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, think about moving on and the positive aspects of your life. The happiest people aren’t those with the most money or possessions. Studies have proven that people who invest in relationships and understand their purpose in life are generally happy. Taking the focus off acquiring money frees you up to enjoy the important things in life.
That being said, you do need to make taking care of finances a priority. Ignoring bills and hoping there’s enough money to cover everything doesn’t cut it and is what leads to unmanageable debt. Schedule intentional time to get your finances in order, and keep the appointment no matter what. By investing a little time each week (or even more often, if necessary), you’ll soon get into a natural rhythm of confidently paying bills on time and spending in the way you’ve budgeted. Before you know it, the task will only take a few minutes and you’ll be free of the worry that sometimes comes with thinking about finances.
Having a healthy relationship with money is a lifelong endeavor, not something you’ll master in a month or two. To be financially successful, you’ll need to think long term. If you make your budget too strict, with no room for moving funds around or spending on special events, you’re not likely to stick to it for very long. After allocating money for all your needs, be sure to set aside a small “allowance” for yourself so you don’t feel too restricted. Maybe you’d like to treat yourself to a lunch out or basic manicure every once in a while. Knowing you have a small reward waiting for you makes it easier to say no to impulse spending. Additionally, keep your eye on your long-term goals. Knowing that you’re working toward retirement or planning a vacation will make the sacrifices along the way worthwhile.
When debt has been hanging over your head for years, dealing with money can become a burden that you just want to avoid. Sometimes the best way to take control of the situation is to make a brand new start through bankruptcy. If you have questions about credit and bankruptcy, give me a call. Together we’ll come up with a plan to get you moving in a healthier direction.