Thriving, instead of surviving
Ever notice how some people seem to always be “just getting by”? Maybe it’s you, maybe you’re living wage to wage and frantically trying to juggle bills with a need to eat. Financial survival is never pretty, and it shouldn’t be the goal. The goal with finances should be to thrive, to put yourself in a position where you can be happy to pick up the groceries because it means you get to try out a new recipe, and where savings is a reality rather than a dream.
Consider the following situations to analyse whether you’re financially surviving or thriving. If you are surviving, start shifting your thinking – you too can thrive!
The car breaks down. What do you do?
a) Start crying, there’s no way you can afford this.
b) Pay for it, but know it will mean wracking up credit card debt for the next month or so while you try to pay yourself back.
c) Use the money you’ve put aside for just such a rainy day.
Everyone wants to say C, but not everyone can. A huge part of thriving is preparing yourself to be able to deal with car breakdowns, needs for braces, and other unexpected expenses that can crop up from time to time. If you don’t already have one, start thinking about how to best build yourself an emergency fund.
You’ve just gotten paid, the money is in the bank. What do you do?
a) Pay back your friends, run to get rent to your landlord, and give yourself $35 for spending that week.
b) Save the whole thing, you can eat next week.
c) Dedicate some to saving, and some to debt repayment, with a little leftover.
Again, C is the popular desire. We need to be realistic with ourselves and with our finances, balancing both debt repayment with savings building. Paying down debt is good, but it doesn’t leave you much hope for the future, this is why building a savings simultaneously is so key. And at the end of the day, most people will need a little something to spend on themselves, so allocate money for these little expenses that do come up.
- Keep an Eye on Those ‘Savings’
- Do You or Your Money Rule?
- 10 Keys to Financial Success
- Debt free, Here’s how, starting in 2020
- What do you actually have to spend per day?
- How to Live within your means, even as they change
- Stop avoiding money and start making it!
- 10 Things I Know Now and Wish I Knew When I Was Younger on Being Financially Free.
- The 50-20-30 Rule
- 10 Tips for Financial Flourishing
Your credit card bill is here, where are you?
a) Hiding under the blankets in your room
b) Crying about how you ever let things get this bad, making a minimum payment frantically, and trying to forget about it
c) At the desk, reorganising your Money Rule so the statement gets paid off, but you still survive.
Credit does come up occasionally, and as much as it should be avoided, it can be managed as well. Make a plan to pay off your debt, doing more than just the minimum, and vow to never let yourself get that far in the red again if it upsets you so much. Just keep in mind that not wanting to use credit, and making plans to avoid using credit are two different things – it will take financial organisation to get yourself out of this, so take some time to think about it.
These are just a few questions to get you thinking about your Money Rule, and about how you can best thrive rather than just survive. Money Rule isn’t here to make your life hell, and it shouldn’t have the power to control you if you set yourself up with solid planning and financial skill building.