How you can use your money to build the life you want
“How you do money is how you do everything.” Kendall Summerhawk
Taking greater care of your money is a good way to start taking better care of yourself.
One of the main reasons people give for not being able to build a life they love is that they can’t afford it, so how about using money to build your dreams rather than limit them?
Most of us have a vision of the life we would like to be living but I rarely meet people who have a realistic financial goal to go with that vision.
I think one of the reasons we stop short of “pricing” our vision is that we are afraid that it will destroy it. We are concerned that the amount of money required to realise our vision will place it out of our reach so we leave the vision vague but at least it’s there to inspire us on bad days.
Let’s have a look at this concern before we go any further.
Firstly, in my experience the amount of money required is often much less than you thought when you finally get around to finding out.
Secondly, I believe that if you have a dream, you will find the means to achieve that dream. Yes, it may take some adjustment, creativity and time but as long as it’s your dream and not someone else’s, you can make it happen.
The key is to break the big financial goal into smaller goals and get started.
For example, say your dream is to have your own place but that the moment you are living with your parents at home. Rents seem out of your reach and property prices are alarming.
1. Do your research
How much would it cost for example, to rent a room in a shared house? What would the upfront costs be? What would the monthly costs be? That might not be your big dream but it is a first step towards it.
2. Is there anything that needs to happen first?
For example, do you need to pay down any debt? That might seem less exciting but at the moment it’s standing between you and your goal. See it as a stop on the road to achieving your dream.
When I was young my parents nearly went bankrupt. It was a stressful time and they had to pay a certain amount each month to clear the debt. Once they had done that they realised that they could use that money for a mortgage. That’s how my Mum got her dream house!
3. Set your big financial goal and be bold
Yes it might seem huge, it might seem scary but writing it down will make it real. It gives your journey a clear destination.
4. Set your financial goal for this month
Make it realistic. It should be a bit of a stretch that may mean some adjustment to the way to spend your money but be kind to yourself. We are talking about money as self-care here. You want a goal that will set you up for success. This isn’t about giving yourself something to beat yourself up about!
5. Take the first step
What tiny step could you take to get the ball rolling? Do you need to open a new savings account? What about making yourself a piggy bank? This might seem silly and pointless but your brain thrives on small wins. However small the step is, its still taking you a step closer to your goal?
Need more help getting started?
This process is at the heart of our money planner. It helps you break your big financial goal into monthly, weekly and daily steps. It helps you track your spending so you stay on track and includes quarterly celebration sheets so you keep enjoying the small wins and don’t get disheartened. It’s also packed full of beautiful photos and colour to keep you inspired.
Whatever you decide, I hope these tips help you be kind to yourself as you start saving towards your dream.