Les McGuire ADFS(FP), Principal of Future Proof Financial, teaches us how to lead from the heart and head when it comes to our finances
Most people love to shop, whether it be for that favourite dress, shoes or maybe the holiday you always wanted. But if we didn’t have that little piece of plastic in our hands, would we still of made that emotional purchase?
Being passionate about our finances, and being aware of what we spend, is a sure way to start building that nest egg for the future. I’m a big believer in also living for today, enjoying success and having dreams; but there needs to be a special balance.
Understanding the best use for our money is one of the key elements to financially succeeding. Too many people have money idle in their savings account, or home loan offset account, while having outstanding credit card debt gaining significant interest. We need to be smarter with how we use our money, instead of paying unnecessary interest to the credit card companies when this money could go towards achieving your own personal goals.
In 2016, while going through some major changes in my life, I knew I had to create a plan to ensure that I could achieve my goals. Part of my plan involved major changes personally, including my living arrangements, expenses and finding that work-life balance.
I wrote a list of things in the next 12 months that I wanted to achieve in order of priority, with each goal I wrote the importance personally of achieving the goal and also the expected financial cost. This gave me focus: I had to understand what I was spending in order to start saving and to be able to achieve these goals.
How did I turn things around? Well, first I worked out all of the things I could do without; what were the discretionary emotional purchases opposed to the necessary lifestyle purchases. Then BOOM! Here it comes… I cut back on the beer, the coffees and eating out. Wow! You’re thinking; where’s the fun in that? Well it taught me an incredible lesson: what I needed to live and what truly made me happy.
Money doesn’t necessarily make us happy, but it provides the ability for us to do things. If we are slightly less indulgent on the discretionary items, the money saved can pay for that something special.
Everyone needs a personal plan to achieve our goals, wants and wishes. Having a plan encourages change; then reward yourself when you have achieved these milestones.
Start loving yourself and achieve all of the things you personally deserve by loving your money also.