Share this Post
It’s quite rare to have a good perspective about money. Most of us reach adulthood with at least a few money hangups that we have to work through. Our money hangups can become barriers when they prevent us from earning enough, saving or investing and knowing our value in the marketplace.
However, learning to be good with money, and realizing your financial potential, isn’t something that’s unattainable. It’s a realistic goal you can strive for. Here are some ways that you can work on your money hangups and move forward with your life.
Mindfulness is a popular catchphrase that’s bandied around a lot at the moment. But it can be helpful when trying to figure out your spending behaviors. A common money hangup for a lot of us is impulse spending. This is when you feel out of control around money or use it to buy something to make yourself feel good.
Be aware of money patterns
Becoming more mindful about when and how you spend your money can put you in the driver’s seat. You gain more control when you identify patterns in your spending and ask questions such as “What am I spending my money on?” “How often?” and “Why?”
The aim is not to judge or blame yourself but simply observe and take note of your spending habits. After a while you’ll start to see patterns emerge that will give you more insight into why you feel compelled to spend. Then you can start to look at other ways to feel good about yourself, rather than reaching for your credit card.
Identify where money hangups come from
It’s safe to say that the majority of our money hangups come from our parents. After all, they were our role models we were growing up.
Do they have a good relationship with money or are they struggling? Was money talked about openly in your family? Or was it a source of shame?
Perhaps you’re just like your Dad when it comes to spending or more like your Mom? Having an understanding of why you have certain spending habits can help you change them.
It’s one thing to know you have a money hangup but another thing to make it go away or improve it. Luckily there are plenty of practical exercises you can do to help you get over your money issues.
You might decide to consult a budgeting service, a financial planner, a money mentor or do an online money course. Whatever you decide, expert help is available and will give you the knowledge you need to sort your finances. Don’t put up with money woes, start making some changes or find someone to help you deal with them.
Start a budget
A good first step is to start a budget if you don’t have one already. Rather than living paycheck to paycheck, a budget will help you to take control of your finances. You’ll know exactly what money is coming in, and what money is going out.
Even if it’s not a pretty picture at first, you can work to improve your situation. No more sticking your head in the sand when the credit card bill comes in.
Set financial goals
Once you’ve got the hang of your budget, you should set some financial goals. Having goals allows you to figure out what you really want in life and the steps you need to get there.
Experts recommend setting 3 financial goals; short-term, medium-term and long-term. Here are some examples of each:
- Short-term goals (up to 2 years); saving for: household furniture, computer gear, a car down payment.
- Medium-term goals (2 to 5 years); saving for: an emergency fund, a wedding, an overseas trip, a down payment on a home.
- Long-term goals (5 years +); saving for: an investment property, retirement.
With all your financial goals do your research so you have some real numbers to work with. This way you’re not stabbing in the dark with figures, you have a concrete number to work towards.
Let’s get serious about money matters!
Getting smart about money might be a quick process for you. Just thinking about your spending habits and practicing financial mindfulness could be all you need to wise up. Need some deeper financial therapy? This article talks about how a financial therapist could be what you need to get you on the right track.
Like this post? Click below for related content: