You’ve probably heard of Ted-Talks, a non-profit organization for spreading thought inspiring and motivational ideas. These talks are usually delivered in quick 20+ minute videos that you can watch in your free time and will no doubt leave you feeling inspired and motivated to create change in your life! These 8 financial Ted-Talks that will transform your life are my favorites.
I have gathered my favorite 8 Financial Education Ted-Talks for you to check out. And though there are thousands to choose from any topic you enjoy, learning about financial matters is always a good idea! Let me know what you think of the best financial TED talks, if there is one you love that has inspired you to take action in your financial picture.
WHY THE RICH GET RICHER:
Given by Robert Kiyosaki, the author of the #1 Best selling book “Rich Dad Poor Dad.” In this talk Robert talks about the power of financial education, and how it impacts financial equality.
In this talk Ian Rosenberger explains how poverty is not the lack of money, but the lack of dignity. He gets his insight from a tragic personal experience, helping people. His story can help transform the way you think about poverty and how and why we get there.
Each one of these financial TED talks has a fantastic lesson in financial education that you can take and use in your daily life. I hope you find the same value in them that I did and apply each one to your daily financial life. Continue learning, never allow yourself to be confused or lost in the weeds when it comes to the knowledge of your finances!
We are thrilled to have this guest post from Kim over at ourhomeliving.com! We highly recommend checking out her site for all things design and organization inspiration to turn your home into a sanctuary! She also knows how to stay frugal in the process of reaching your dream home goals! Just see how to start below!
Have you ever wanted to decorate your home and realize that kind of thing costs money? So many times I get stuck in a jam when planning my budget and realize I don’t have the funds to redecorate. Here are some great tips on how to save money when decorating your home.
Hi there! My name is Kim fromOur Home Living. Grace and Scott were kind enough to let me share some of my insight for decorating when on a budget. This truly is a topic most people tend to overlook when creating their budget. So let’s dive in, shall we?
Save Money When Decorating
What Can You Afford?
Most of us have a general understanding what our income is and where it goes after it hits the bank. The issue when it comes to decorating is having that allocated fund for everything you need.
What I want to stress first is that it is extremely important to pay your bills before you start buying decor. I have been guilty of this and it was a hard lesson learned. I was stuck in a pinch because I saw a pretty sign at Home Goods and thought it would look amazing in my living room. Little did I realize I didn’t have enough money to pay the car insurance bill later that week.
I knew I didn’t have a lot of money to work with when I bought that sign but I gave in to impulse. In that sort of situation, I wish I had started my fund/budget for decorating and had some cash on hand.
So make sure you have the money and it isn’t reserved for the important stuff before making a purchase.
Start With Baby Steps
This is in reference to figuring out what you can afford in order to save money when decorating your home.
If you know you want to redecorate your family room but are not sure where to start financially, take a step back. Plan everything. For instance, if I would have taken my time to plan the funds necessary I wouldn’t have succumbed to impulse and purchased that sign.
I would have planned out step by step based on my budget, even if it would take a while to get everything I would need to decorate.
Price shop. Really that is what it all boils down to. If you want to save money when decorating your home you have to shop smart.
Make sure to pay attention to sales. Some great sales are always after major holidays. So if you think you can hold off decorating a room until after such a time, I highly recommend you do.
Can You DIY It?
This is a question that should be asked every time you want to purchase something new if you want to save money when decorating your home. In the world of Pinterest and everything DIY, most pieces of furniture, signs, simple decor have, more than likely, some kind of tutorial on how to make it yourself.
For instance, I really wanted these industrial pipe looking shelves from Wayfair but when I found out they cost over a hundred dollars for not even three shelves my jaw dropped. So my husband decided to get creative. He created his own version of the shelves.
If you want to check out the shelves stay tuned atOur Home Living for the details as soon as they are ready.
Can You Get it for Free?
Free is always a good option but you still have to be careful if it is really worth it.
A few times I have been given old decor from family because they were freshening up the look of their home or it was trash to begin with. I think sometimes I am given things because my family might think I am crafty enough to repurpose things. Which isn’t entirely true.
Another great way to score awesome decor would be to ask if anyone is moving. I know it sounds weird, but hear me out. People that move give away so much stuff. They will usually host a yard sale before the big move. The goal of any yard sale is to 1.) Sell what you can to make a buck and 2.) get rid of it all even if you have to give it away.
This is a great opportunity to get free stuff.
I hope these tips provide you with guidance to save money when decorating your home.
The dreaded food budget. I despise the food budget. I can’t help but feel that I pay hundreds of dollars for good food that gets eaten by my 5 kids, just to pay for toiletries to clean up after it! J If you feel this way then you are always looking for ways to save money on your food budget too!!
It isn’t hundreds of dollars spent on new carpet or fixing the broken air conditioner! It just goes out the window on food that has to be spent the next week on food again and again. But no matter how I feel about the food budget; we all still need to eat!! 😊
SO with that said I am ALWAYS on the lookout for ways to save money on food.
The food budget is one of the biggest money suckers in the family’s typical budget. Especially if you have gotten the rest of your budget so low that there is no more wiggle room in it.
Personally with 7 people in our house it is one of our biggest expenses. I swear the people at the grocery store know me by name!
We have tried everything and let me tell you there are certain things that work and certain things that just don’t. Each family and situation is different. Finding what works for you is secret trick number one. Don’t be afraid to do unconventional things to make it work!
I’ve come up with a list of 10 Tips that I have found help me keep to my food budget AND save money, which is always the frosting on top of the cake for me! Here are 10 ways to save money on your Food Budget:
1. Meal Plan
First on the list of ways to save money on your food budget is meal planning!
Meal Planning used to always feel like such a big chore for me. Every time I would read those words I would skip over them, writing it off as information I already knew. Yet I didn’t apply.
WHAT A HUGE MISTAKE!
Meal planning isn’t a strict schedule, only an outline of what is on the menu for your week. This doesn’t have to be day to day. Here are some of the easiest and most efficient ways I’ve discovered how to meal plan:
A: Ask your family what they are hungry for!
B: Check out what is about to go bad in your fridge or what you have in the pantry.
C: Check your calendar for any late or rushed nights this week and plan a easy meal that day.
D: Check the weather, any freezing nights where soup would be good? How about scorchers, 90 and up where watermelon and grilled chicken would suffice? Meal planning will help everyone in the family eat what they like and make your schedule SO much easier! It will also allow some good thought out meals in your head (or on your list) when you are walking the grocery aisles, keeping you focused and frugal!
2. Meal Prep
Meal prepping is essential if you are anything like me. I am an extremely lazy cook! (Just between you and me I really hate cooking). But there isn’t much of a choice. I have found that I don’t like to sit in the kitchen for hours on end. I am much happier if I can make things when I am in the mood and have it ready to serve. Also, if you are making meat, prepping it for better flavor and texture is always best. Prepping is essential so you aren’t calling your husband to make that quick fast food stop because you have got it all handled for much less $$$!
3. Batch Cook
Third and going hand-in-hand with meal prep is batch cooking. Batch cooking is simply making large amounts of one item of food to be a quick “go-to” for later. I have certain items I ALWAYS batch cook such as beans, rice, and soup. These are great go to things to throw into a tortilla or make a bowl of when you just don’t have time and are on the go. You can batch cook roasts or whole chickens as well leaving you great options for sandwiches soups, casseroles and the like. This can provide a filling and cheap item to be used in with your meals in a pinch! For example if you are having tacos but just don’t have time to make the beans or rice (cheap fillers) you can just grab from the batch you made earlier in the week!
4. Be Creative with Leftovers
Learning how to create a masterpiece out of a leftover is a skill! But knowing this will most certainly save you a lot of money in the long run. Like batch cooking, having the items pre-cooked and ready to go will help you to create many different dishes from 1 meal.
A leftover roasted chicken for instance can turn into the following:
Loaded Baked Potatoes
Chicken and Rice Casserole
Shredded Chicken Sandwiches
Soup and Homemade Bread
And so many more! It’s a great way not to waste food or money!
5. Never Get Low on Supplies
Shocking as this sounds it is one of the best ways to save money on your food budget! Whenever I let my resources in my fridge and pantry get low, I tend to lean toward takeout. By the time my husband gets home and dinner should be made or at least almost ready, I am in no mood to run to the store (You should never shop hungry anyway)! For some reason I am terrible at timing when my food is going to run out. (Probably because I am always wanting to save money, I want just one more day before I must shop!) So a good rule of thumb is to not let your fridge get too low.
Going grocery shopping when you are on empty at home is an excuse to “over shop” and spend WAAAY over the food budget! It triggers the crises mode in our brain and suddenly budgeting goes out the window! Knowing we have some food back at home enables us to shop with a level head and stick to the food budget and grocery list!
6. Make Your Favorites
There seems to be a trend or thought process that if we are eating at home the meals need to be extra healthy. Unless extra healthy is your thing right now don’t let this thought process block you from making your favorites at home.
At home burger night or pizza night usually winds up tasting 500x better than if you went out and got it! And you save so much money by not eating out for those prices!
Give yourself permission to do nothing but good ol’fashioned pot of creamy mac n’ cheese once in a while! I bet the kids will love it! J Lighten up on yourself and enjoy life!
7. Track Your Spending
This is seventh on the list but was a huge game changer for us!
We would go to the store with our list, and our meal plan, but there was always something that caught our eyes that we needed to have or would be a nice little treat and we would grab it.
It wasn’t until we started tracking what each item cost and how many we purchased and knowing exactly how much money we were going to spend on our food that we started to realize how much we overspent every single shopping trip. You don’t have to be a math genious to calculate what you are putting in your cart! Simply round up or estimate close to where you are at with each item. It gets easier the more you do it!
Try it and you’ll be surprised. Remember if it isn’t on the list, then you didn’t initially need it.
8. Go Ahead and Eat Out
I like to eat out! As a mom, I like to have someone make and clean up dinner for me every now and again! Can I get an Amen!?
I know it’s expensive and puts a HUGE dent in the food money for the other meals I have to make. And yet…….the fact remains I LIKE TO EAT OUT!
I have lived many years feeling guilty for facts like these. For instance if I was to walk into a store I would bet that I will pick out THE MOST EXPENSIVE ITEM in the place because it is my exact taste! I’m naturally attracted to the more expensive items everywhere!
After feeling guilty for years about being this way, I came to the conclusion that I didn’t need to be ashamed of who I was, I just needed to work with it.
So I’m here to tell you, go ahead and eat out if that’s what you like. Pick the day that works for you, budget for it, plan the place and know your strategy. Split a meal and only get water if that’s what it takes, but don’t stop living life or worse drop the budget because it makes you want to cry knowing the things you enjoy are no longer yours until the distant future!
This actually can save you money on your food budget because it is easier to stick to the food budget and frugal meals knowing you get a “go out” night later that week! There’s no panic of getting sick of always cooking and meal prepping because a break is coming! It’s like getting to eat a cheat meal when you are on a diet but knowing that you have allowed it and will be right back on the diet for the next meal! It helps! 😁
9. Don’t Get Tricked by Coupons
Coupons! They make me laugh!! Have you ever gotten the ad for the week and all of the sudden find yourself needing things you didn’t even remember existed just because they have a coupon for them?
Don’t get me wrong coupons can be great especially for toiletries but when it comes to food, unless you had it on your list of things to purchase that week, don’t add it just because you found a coupon!! This makes you spend more, not less! And if it is something the kids won’t eat, your just throwing it away in the future anyway!
However if you are going to use coupons I discovered this amazing toolbar that you can download to your web browser that finds a coupon somewhere on the entire internet for the item that you are purchasing. Called WIKIBUY. It’s completely free and incredibly useful.
Don’t forget about Ebates. A fantastic service that offers you literally cash back on purchases you were already going to make online! Great way to put money back in that food budget!!
10. Keep a Fridge List
A life saver for me is my fridge list. This is an actual list you keep on your fridge! As soon as an item runs out I slap it on my list. This is a great help when you are focused on meal planning and forget that the salt is low or other essentials are getting down to the end. It also helps you to know, when you are walking through the store and see something you think you need but forgot to put on the list. It wasn’t essential enough to be put on the list so it can wait for next time!
There you have it! 10 ways to save money on your food budget and make your money/meal relationship much easier!
Let’s be honest budgeting is hard work. It takes sacrifice and planning. But I know you can do it. I know that the life beyond this point is going to be amazing. See how we cut our grocery bill in half and continue to save money on food!
Let’s talk about some side-hustles that you can do from the comfort of your own bed.
We feel at The Willow Brook Life that not having a side-income is one of the biggest financial mistakes that you can make.
Having a side-hustle from the comfort of your own home is the dream isn’t it?
Being able to be at home after your 9-5, working on something that interests you or something you have a passion for. These are things that make a side-hustle a fun and interesting way to make an extra income. The freedom and power it gives you of taking control and working for your goals is exciting!
Paying off debt and/or saving for something can be a daunting task; especially when you feel maxed out in your budged. Believe me I’ve been there. People often feel that having a side-income would mean never seeing their family or having a life at all. They might think it is too hard, or they don’t want to learn a whole new line of work. They feel that they don’t want to go to another “job”. This is why it is important to find a side-hustle you can do from the comfort of your own bed, or at least your own home!
Having a side-income is one of the most fantastic ways of getting out of debt faster AND adding more room to the BUDGET!!! All good things right?! Check out how we cut our monthly grocery bill in HALF and added some fuel to our budget!
We have always believed strongly in spending quality time with our family and having more time to live than to work. We believe in spending time with your children and loved ones far more than at the office. I think most people feel this way. But we also believe strongly that a debt-free and financially abundant life are essential to happy living!
What better way to achieve all of these things quicker than by having a good side-hustle?
Having a side-hustle that ANYONE can do from ANYWHERE is the goal today.
We’ve picked 9 basic side-incomes that we would like to share with you. They tap into different skill sets, are really flexible to your schedules and abilities, and they are something you can do just a couple hours a month if you want! But the key is that they are side hustles you can do FROM THE COMFORT OF YOUR BED!!
So without further ado, here are 9 SIDE HUSTLES YOU CAN DO FROM THE COMFORT OF YOUR BED:
Customer Service Rep
Now that Millennials have come into the work force things have drastically changed with how much “virtual” work gets done. Customer service is a field where more and more representatives are being allowed to work out their own schedules and work from home.
There are agencies like Live Ops which will pair you with a company if they approve you to be a part of their system. Or you can apply online at the specific companies that you would like to work for and apply at their direct site looking specifically for “work from home” reps. You would be surprised how many companies are doing this in large quantities. This makes for a perfect job while the kids are at school or if they still go to bed early! 😊
Review Websites, Apps, & Programs
This is something I recently came in contact with and was surprised that it was a real money making option! I had my website reviewed by a site called User Testing. The experience was fun! I gave my information and within 20 minutes someone had a voice recorded video in my inbox of their first impression review of my site. This is a fun, super quick and easy way to make extra money and you never have to get out of bed for this one too! Other websites are User Feel and User Lytics.
Virtual assistants do everything from making calls, setting up meetings, emailing and tedious tasks that busy business owners or managers are looking to outsource for their busy days. There are A LOT of agencies that will hook you up with people who are looking for virtual assistances. These can be great ways to stay in your comfy pj’s sip some coffee and never leave your cozy bed all while scheduling appointments and responding to emails! It’s like having a hygge moment while actually getting paid!
If you are someone who really enjoys the English language, you’re great at writing essays, articles or even just a great reader you might be someone who would really love a copywriting gig.
It’s super easy to set up an online portfolio. You can go to places like Contently where clients come and find you and you can seek out freelance jobs.
Online Language Tutor
If you have a degree this one may be for you. I have a friend who tutors a Chinese girl in her kitchen and makes a beautiful side-income while homeschooling and being a stay at home mom. Taking this one step further you can stay in bed while you tutor people in English online. This is a great way to help people better themselves and learn something yourself!
Selling Used Books
This one is a great way to make a side-income. Look at places like Book Scouter or Book Finder and of course Amazon. This one may require you to go to the post office every now and again but then that’s it and money trickles into your bank account. My husband once worked with a man who was a self-made millionaire. He recommended this as a great side gig and explained how fun it was! He said that he and his wife would go thrift shopping for fun date nights, hunting for books and vintage games or toys. He said he easily made $400 to $500 a month just from this fun hobby! Not too shabby my friend! Not too shabby!! 😊
General Online Tutor
This one applies again to someone who has a college degree. A great way to really use your degree is to go to an online tutoring website and become certified to tutor k-highschool grade students in whatever field your degree is in. This is great for anyone not utilizing their degree to its fullest in their everyday lives, and a fantastic way to help out, giving your knowledge and expertise to the next generation!
Search Keyword Terms
Go to any company you prefer and search for “work from home” “virtual” or “remote” and see what it is that you are qualified for that you can do at home! Keep your eye out for especially part-time positions for side-hustle perfect positions!
Last but not least is to go to good ol’ Craigslist! Go to that hidden little “Gig’s” tab all the way down at the bottom. You would be surprised what you find there. It isn’t as taboo as you’d think! There are tons of great little jobs in there that are perfect for someone just looking for pocket change! So go check it out and see what you can find that fits you perfectly!
These are only a couple of the ways to make an income from a side-hustle from the comfort of your bed or the couch! There are so many fun ways to turn a hobby into an income or even just those quiet hours when the kids are off at school! Like I said before getting out of debt and saving money for big ticket items or even just to start investing can be a daunting and overwhelming task. Having a side-hustle is in my opinion the greatest way to speed up that process and make it all the more fun to save money! Because let’s be honest, money is more fun when you have some to work with!
For middle class America, car payments are a normal way of life, everybody has one! I’ve even been told; “a car payment is a sign of being an adult”.
Yes most of us were raised to believe that this is the norm and that every car we own comes with a car payment! This does not have to be true! In fact, today more than ever before it shouldn’t be true! It has to change!
We all know that excess credit card debt is a bad thing and that student loans are outrageous today! But for some reason car payments (as crazy expensive as they are these days) get a free pass when talking about debt and money smarts.
There are many reasons why this is, for one it is because of the way it is constantly advertised to us. Second it’s because cars are necessary (yes for most of us a car is necessary, but not the payments J) and third is that we feel the value when driving a car and physically using it. That all being said, no car is worth what we lose when we have a car payment!
Car payments are stealing your money and here are 5 reasons WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER HAVE A CAR PAYMENT:
Depreciating in Value
When something depreciates it reduces in value with time. Cars depreciate in value faster than almost anything!
We all pretend like spending $36,000 on a new car is acceptable! However; if we had that racked up on a credit card we’d be banging our heads against the wall!
Here’s where the problem lies in thinking the car payment is okay: What’s the big difference?
This means that half of the new cars purchased were more expensive than that!!!!
If I bought $36,000 worth of clothes on a credit card people would say that I have a spending problem (and they’d be right). Also, after some time of wearing those clothes (hopefully a long time for that price) they would no longer be returnable. Sure I could sell them in a garage sale and get some money out of them but never the full amount that they cost me when they were brand new.
Now let’s look at cars. If I spend $36,000 on a new car (below average) most people would find that perfectly acceptable. However the same thing happens to the car as it did with the clothes; each time I use it, the value of it goes down. I could never sell it for what I paid for it and as time goes on the value keeps going down.
In the meantime, I’m making payments each month (with interest) on something that I am wearing out faster than I am paying off.
Cars should be looked at as a necessary expense, but the payment isn’t. We spend enough on car maintenance and repair to not have a car payment to add to it! And it’s never worth it to buy a new car for how fast they depreciate in value.
The opportunity cost of money is basically the missed opportunity of what you could do with your money if you had not been spending it on car payments. Basically what are you giving up in order to make those car payments, 401k, vacation, investment, savings, buying a house etc.
Our car payments are robbing us from being truly wealthy and successful with money! The average new car purchased in America is $36,270 according to Kelly Blue Book and most people who take out a car loan and make payments on that for many years to come.
According to Edmunds.com: “In 2014, 62 percent of the auto loans were for terms over 60 months. And nearly 20 percent of the loans were for 73- to 84-month terms.”
So not only are car prices getting bigger, but we are paying for them for a longer amount of time! Therefor taking away all opportunity that we had to put that money to better use! Also here’s a thought, after 60 months (five years) you have an “old” car on your hands…time to go get a brand new car and repeat the cycle.
-Leases are no better, you are just making a car payment for something that isn’t and will never be yours (again charging you an opportunity cost of that money).
So we have the average new car price of $26,270 and the average loan rate (remember this is average so half of them are higher! Scary!) of 4.21% over the average car loan term of 60 months….putting that into a payment calculator (google it) comes out to
$670 per month!
That is what the “average” American is spending per month on a new car! If you are not shocked by this think of this –according to the census bureau for 2016 the average household income was between; $57,000-$59,000 annually.
That is a take home pay after taxes of $3,900 per month! Are we killing ourselves with car payments here? Not to mention student loans, house payments, credit cards, and putting money away for when you finally get to retire!
What could you do with that extra $670 a month that is being wasted on a car? Is it really worth it?
What if we live with the car we have for a few years or buy a cheap car and start putting a “car payment” worth away in a money market or mutual fund account? This would mean that the amounts we are saving to buy our next car would actually being growing interest FOR us!
On top of this, when you go to a car lot with cash, you can always negotiate a better deal than if you are asking for a car and begging to be accepted for a loan in the process. Doing the latter puts you at the mercy of the car dealer (and they aren’t known to be merciful).
As explained above; if you were to save or invest your car payments rather than let the bank do it, you are gaining interest rather than paying it.
If you can be proactive with your money rather than reactive. You can live without ever having a car payment.
Being proactive would be saving your money for a car realizing that cars have a limited lifetime before they fall apart. Being reactive would be to wait until your car breaks down to think about needing to get a new one and not having any money to do so. This is what most people do.
Instead, be a proactive person! Think of your health:
A proactive person exercises and eats healthy in order to keep his/her body from getting sick.
A reactive person does nothing until they are laying in a hospital bed about to have an operation due to not proactively taking care of themselves.
The same is true about our financial health. We should be PROACTIVE in all our financial matters! It is how we are able to pay bills on time, take a vacation, and eventually retire!
Why should cars not fall under the category of things we save for? Because it’s easy to get a car loan? Because it is considered normal?
Being normal is being that reactive person on the hospital bed. Normal people do not run marathons and normal people do not become wealthy.
It is something that must be proactively worked on! It takes time but it is worth it! Financially successful people know these reasons why you should never have a car payment and they avoid them like crazy!
Which brings us to #5 which is one of the most important points about car payments that financially successful people always keep in mind:
Time Adds Up
Spending 60 months on a car payment kills 5 YEARS of potential investing or doing ANYTHING else with that money. Instead you are left with a $5,000 dollar car and nothing in your savings or retirement from those car payments.
5 Years of paying someone else with interest is a long time! Not to mention the actual principal payment amount! Imagine putting that money into an investment every month or just under the mattress! You would have around $40,000 to do whatever you want with!
When it is spent on a car payment for that long, it is wasted on something that is really a luxury. If you can afford it and still put money towards everything else you want to in order to reach you goals (for example if you are a millionaire) than go for it!
For most of us however; it is foolish to waste that money over such a long period of time on a new car. And as stated before, after 5 years…you are left with no money and an old car, only to repeat the cycle again.
As explained in the video above; save your payment and start making time work for you! Ask anyone over the age of 50 and they will tell you that they wish they would have started putting money towards retirement earlier than they did…because time plus compound interest works miracles! But that’s another topic all together.
When it comes to money and looking back on what we “should have done” time flies by! Think about how you could have saved more for college or not spent so much on that last….fill in the blank. The same goes for your car payments.
The time will go by no matter what you do with your money, so do the thing that will benefit your goals and dreams the most!!!
So to recap 5 reasons why you should never have a car payment:
Your Car is Rapidly Depreciating in Value
It Robs You Through the Opportunity Cost
Don’t Let Interest Work Against You
It’s Better to Save Your Payments
Time adds Up –Have Something to Show For It
For middle class America, car payments are a normal way of life, everybody has one! Is it our goal to be like everyone else? Do we want to achieve normal?
No if you are like me you have dreams and goals that sound scary when you mention them out loud! They get you tingly and excited when you think about them for 5 minutes! Don’t let the excitement of a new car rob you of what you really want for your life and your future!
I wish you all the success and happiness in your daily life!
Your income doesn’t matter, your age doesn’t matter, your race doesn’t matter! The only thing that is holding you back is math! This is why you cannot move forward without a written budget. a game plan for your money and your money goals!
When we don’t bother to do the math before we do the spending we do ourselves the biggest disservice.
“Adults devise a plan and stick to it, children do what feels good.” -Dave Ramsey
According to Gallup poll only 32% of households in America maintain a household budget. The rate of financial success within those households is even fewer due to approaching it with the wrong attitude. Anyone can create a budget, it can be simple or complex if desired. It can be full of detail, charts, graphs and financial calculations. However, without approaching it with the right mindset we all fall short of our money goals, every time.
We saved over $600 in just one month by changing some all-too-common habits that were draining our budget! Saving money starts as a choice followed by direct action. It takes discipline and intention. Your mind has to be made up that it is more important to save money for, (fill in blank) then to have instant gratification.
Saving money is hard. It takes discipline and dedication over a long period of time! We are not used to delayed gratification and things taking time these days. Just ask my 3 year old who complains if the load circle appears on YouTube! (Back in my day we had to actually rewind VHS’s)
This is why saving money for a future goal is so hard for us, probably more so than it was for past generations. It takes a lot of intense focus and drive, much like losing weight in a healthy way so that it stays off! My husband and I decided to see how much we could save in one month so that we could see some pretty quick results when it came to our saving goals.
We have dreams of travel and adventure as well as putting our kids through college and so we have a lot to save for! So we focused our time and effort on saving money just to see what we could accomplish in 1 month and the results were amazing! We saved over $600 in one month by making some easy and some intense habit changes in our life!
And that’s really what saving money all boils down to; changing habits and goals. So rather than ordering Pizza at night we put money away for that car we have always talked about buying! It is all about your mindset and changing it to feel the gratification of knowing you are preparing for the future rather than comfort in the present.
Here is what we did to save over $600 in just one month:
Some of these may not apply to you but you may also have other areas of your life that could use adjusting in order to save money. The most exciting part about this is seeing the results in just one month! Feeling that excitement of knowing you are working towards your big dreams and taking charge of your future!
Cut Cable $50 (Channel flipping is a boring waste of time)
Nix Netflix$10 (More time to work on a side hustle)
Stop Eating Out $80 (Brown bag it and stop getting drinks/snacks at gas stations)
That’s a lot of money to see in just a little bit of time! It really helps to see these kind of leaps so that focusing on your dream gets more exciting month after month knowing that you are working towards it!
Changing habits can be hard, but it does get easier once the determination is there. It also gets much easier to continue to save money once you can look back and see the benefit of it. For example; being able to look back and see $600 in the bank in just one month made us excited to do it again and again!
When looking at how you can save money this month, I would encourage you to stay focused on your dreams! Maybe even write them down in detail! That is something I have done many times! It helps while saving money for them in order to stay focused on what I really want! Comment on some things you have done that have saved you money fast!
Debt is a horrible thing. It robs us of what is ours, it takes away opportunity, freedom and security. It keeps people awake at night and working around the clock.
I know because my husband and I have been up to our eyeballs in it since we got married.
I handed my poor young husband $22,000 of personal consumer debt the day we got married. And we proceeded to tack on $33,000 more through our early years of marriage. Shockingly neither of us have a spending problem! This debt was all average, run of the mill, everyday living debt. Cars, student loans, and of course children! None of that is an excuse just a description of the picture we were dealing with.
At first neither of us knew what to do. We didn’t know where to begin or who to turn to. Yet the dream of being debt free was the drive behind our fervor.
I remember coming across a success story of a woman with a large family, living on a low single income, and being debt free, AND SAVING MONEY!! I was obsessed with the notion. Part of me laughed at myself and thought
“of course she can do it…..but you can’t”
I had so many excuses for myself. Things like, “we can either be healthy, or debt free, but it’s impossible to do both.”
Or “I think it’s fine once we have things like a nicer car and bigger home, then we can really go crazy getting out of debt.”
These and many more I tried to convince myself of. They were all lies.
I would get angry when I wanted to buy something or update something and we simply didn’t have the money. I always snapped, “where the heck is all our money going?” But it was always going to the same place: Debt
I finally had it with the whole idea of debt. Borrowing to get things we wanted just to be punished for the rest of our lives. Never getting ahead or being able to afford anything of quality. And never being able to move forward with dreams or goals.
So we did 4 things:
First: We Got Our Finances in Order.
We laid it all out. We wrote EVERY blessed thing down. And we made a budget. It started with understanding down to the penny what we made each month followed by exactly what we spent. this was somewhat unknown as we were not keeping track of any spending whatsoever at the time. it was painful and not fun at all the first few times we sat down to talk about finances. However, as time went on and we were incorporating better habits and seeing them work, it became very exciting!
Starting a budget is not easy and I recommend having a lot of patience when you do it with your spouse! A couple things to remember;
It’s not one person’s fault. -Finances are both your responsibilities and if they need help, it’s up to both of you.
A budget doesn’t last forever. -You will have to go back at least once a month if not more to change and update things in your budget!
This is a starting point. -It’s easy to get frustrated at past habits and mistakes but you have to take note and move forward with that knowledge of having control of your money.
We took all the different loans, credit cards, and car loans and we consolidated them into one low interest rate payment. I have heard different opinions on this. Personally, I wanted to take all that interest and diminish it as much as I could. I couldn’t think of a smarter way than bringing it all to one place and only having 1 interest rate.
Also, the benefit of this is only having 1 payment and one due date. Resulting in never missing a payment and never paying late fees. There are many consolidation companies that can help you get started with your debt-free journey. They are widely accredited and well known for their quality services. You would be putting yourself in good hands with them. However, do your due diligence and research what is a good match for you.
Fourth: We Put Our Heads Down And Powered Through.
After putting it all down on paper. Getting rid of excess. Putting the debt all in one place. We were set.It was simple, and it was hard. That is to say; it is not complicated but that doesn’t make it easy!
The process was easy, but the follow through took discipline. We put every extra dime toward debt.
I thrift shopped everything first. What I couldn’t find at the thrift store, I went to the dollar store for. After that the last resort was Wal-Mart or something as cheap.
For food it was the same concept. Aldi first, Wal-Mart second, but I dreamt of the day I could walk into a Trader-Joe’s and Target again. I knew I would, but the days felt long and tiring to get through.
I decided to fall in love with the process. I decided to make it a game. As the debt started to melt away and we could see the end of the tunnel more and more it became exhilarating. Things became less important. Food was just food. It didn’t need to be expensive or fancy, only nutritious and satisfying.
We always kept the dream and focus in the forefront of our minds. It took a lot of “pain now for results later” mentality, but it worked! We turned our dreams into goals and used that as our motivation! This let us discuss our dreams over a nice cup of coffee while having the knowledge of knowing we were working our plan to get there and reach them! It has been a huge challenge and one that has to be done together if you are married!
I am so excited to be able to tell you that if we accomplished this challenge, if we climbed the mountain of debt to reach the top and find freedom so can you!
All it takes is these 4 simple steps, and the courage to see it through to the end!
I wish you all the luck in the world and all the financial freedom you deserve!
When we think about “success” we think money. When we think money, we think of having so much of it that it no longer brings concern. Some of us may even think in numbers like millions or billions.
If you have any ambition to be successful at all, why not learn from the best?
I’ve studied millionaires for the past 16 years and becoming a millionaire has been a life-long dream of mine since I can remember! Although at first, of course; I didn’t have much of a plan. It was just wishful thinking; a dream rather than a goal.
Through the years however I have taken the wonderful advice of the ones I have studied and applied it to my daily life. After hard work and detailed application, things began to fall into place in ways that have taken my life and turned it around 180 degrees.
By applying the things, we learn; our lives can start to look like the ones we want to emulate. It’s so easy to read quotes, read books, and watch movies about other people’s success stories fiction or non. It’s so simple to then dismiss their success as a “fluke”, or just cracking it up to it being what they were “destined” for, but that’s not OUR lives. It safe to stay put. To not ever go out of our comfort zone. Safety isn’t success it’s average.
Here are 18 Things that typical millionaires have in common regarding good personal and money habits:
Get Up Early
You don’t have to be up before the sun. But being up before people start pestering allows for time to focus and get the most done. It also allows for Personal time. Spiritual time. Mental time. These 3 things are things the world and other people do not allow for you, so you must chisel time out for yourself. Being up before the world starts pulling you each and every way allows for that time.
This one seems like a no brainer, it also seems to be said a lot these days with youtubers and bloggers up the wazoo. It was background to me for a long time. Something I dismissed for some unknown emotional reason. Self-doubt perhaps. But this one is truly an important factor. Either by a side-hustle or full on business getting self employed allows you the freedom to bring in any amount you set for yourself. Start with a budget!
Taking risks is so far out of most people’s comfort zones that they literally never will do it. Not even once in their lives. Millionaires however have all taken some risk. Either on themselves or in an investment. Learn what risks are practical, safer, and will yield a return and then start.
Learn the numbers and get comfortable with it. Take a course, ask an advisor, do whatever it takes for you to understand what you are doing with your hard-earned money but then do it. Teach yourself how to make your money work FOR you.
Invest often. Don’t get scared and quit. Don’t sit on one investment. Invest often.
Invest early. It’s the hardest and most important phase for getting a foundation under your belt.
Gratitude and Satisfaction
Millionaires are people who have had massive amounts of gratitude and satisfaction throughout the entire process. They learned early on to enjoy the journey. By being grateful in our present states and having satisfaction with the things we have and the achievements we have conquered we stop looking outside of ourselves for happiness. The happiest people have the most to offer the world.
People who are successful are typically the best in their field or expertise. Be the best NOW!!! Don’t wait until the money starts coming in. Give the best of yourself. Show up. Excel at whatever you are doing but excel NOW. Be the best waitress. The BEST cashier. Smile. Bring Joy and value. Make people laugh. Be attractive and you will attract. If you hate your job, change it. If you can’t change it create a business, you will love. Just remember you can’t start a business tonight and quite your job tomorrow, it will take time. But the time will pass if you start one or not. So, you might as well start creating your future today. While you are at it though, be the best version of you.
Figure Out Your “Why” First
If you don’t have a reason you don’t have much of a pull. How will you be willing to do what it takes if you don’t have a reason behind you. It doesn’t have to be profound or elaborate. Figure out what your reasons for stepping out of your comfort zone and into the unknown are. This will keep you going in the hard times. This will be the drive to get you to the top.
Believe in Yourself
More times than not we sit on the sidelines watching. We are all afraid. Don’t be fooled. All the millionaires I’ve ever spoken with have had a point in their lives where they were afraid.
Most millionaires didn’t have parents who handed them a bank account after school. They came from where you sit today or worse. Also most of them were so scared and they didn’t know what to do, but they kept putting one foot in front of the other. You can’t run the race sitting on the bleachers. You have to get off the sidelines and start. Believe that you have something to offer that no one else does. The world is waiting for you!
Little sacrifices add up. Start small and slow. You don’t have to go all in. Just do 1 small thing each day that moves you forward. You want to build momentum. These millionaires didn’t get here in a day. They followed a process. They started small and slow and eventually they won the race.
It’s important to have a plan B. Otherwise we let road blocks get in our way. We set ourselves up for failure. Create a plan B to keep moving forward. There will always be road blocks and doors that slam shut. Don’t let it be discouraging.
Don’t Purchase These 2 Things
There are 2 things in life that we are programed to need, want, and continually buy. New Car’s and New Houses. Resist the urge as much as you can. As the money starts to come in remember that the Mazda you drove to get to class will still get you around. The house can be fixed and upgraded.
Make Your “Millions” Come to Life
What does being a millionaire mean to you? It means something different to each person. There are no two people alike. A millionaires lifestyle to you will be a completely different picture to me. Paint your picture. Dream. Visualize. Sometimes when we think “millionaire” we think in money, but money has no feeling. Think about what a day in your life would look like if you made a 7-figure income. This is your million come to life!
14. Planning, Commitment and Perseverance
Plan your money so you have plenty at the end of the month. By making more or cutting expenses, whichever you prefer. Create and commit to a plan, then persevere. The hardest part is perseverance through the hard times.
Get Rid of Bad Debt
Learn the difference between good and bad debt. Avoid consumer debt at all costs, but don’t neglect the benefits of good debt. Good debt is a debt that is an investment that will grow in value and generate long-term income. Purchasing a home would be an example of “good debt.” It is an asset that typically grows in value and is sold for a profit.
Avoid Peer Pressure and “The Jones’s”
Its super easy to get sucked into the trends and what other people are doing or having. Social media makes it even easier to be constantly up to date with what everyone is buying. This is where remembering your “million come to life” comes in very handy. Always having that scene playing out in your head of what your day will looks like after you achieve your goals is the perfect tool to keep you on track and let the Jones’s be.
Learn How to Work 10% Harder Than the Average Person
The average person comes home and watched Netflix.
They get up in just enough time to maybe shower before work and head out the door.
Never stop reading, listening to podcasts, studying the people you want to emulate. Don’t give up on your dreams and always be working on reaching them. The minute you stop learning, is the minute you give it all up. If you don’t understand something you must research it until you do. And if you fear something; do it until you are comfortable. Never stay comfortable, because comfort is average!
Remember becoming a millionaire is NOT hard to do, but so it NOT becoming one. It’s a choice in the little things.
Working a bit harder.
Setting aside instant gratification
Being grateful for what you have and are experiencing
Stepping out of your comfort zone
Investing in yourself
Through my 16 years of study these 18 things ring loud and clear as common denominators. If you can implement them into your life now slowly but surely you will start to see a snowball effect of results.
“Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”
― Earl Nightingale
Where will you be in the next 10 years? Will you risk your comfort, learn to work 10% harder, and ignore the Jones’s to be able to give your advice for making 7-figures?