This one is going to be difficult to not only get right but to actually put down on paper too. It is something I have been worried about for a long time and REALLY need to get control of. I am almost sure I am not the only person that has an issue with this but I’ll get into that in a mo. If you haven’t read how this series of posts came about then please feel free to read them, here are the links
Where to start on number four? This one, like the first of the Seven, is hard to admit. This has also been something that has bugged me
for a long time my whole life. I am terrible with money and I need to get better. If there is one thing I think schools should teach kids is financial literacy. Pythagoras’s theory is great but I have yet to use it practically in ANY situation. What I could’ve used is a few lessons on really how to be disciplined when it comes to my personal finances. The sad thing is I think the answer is in that last sentence. To manage your finances successfully you need discipline.
It actually scares me if I think about how little I know about how much I am spending in different areas of my life. As an example I have no idea how much I spent on gas last month and that is not good. I hope I am not the only person who is battling with this? Please tell me I’m not!
Things need to change. So here goes. I am going to become, or at least start becoming financially literate. I guess it all boils down to budgeting doesn’t it? Making sure you have more coming in than going out and making sure you don’t have too much going out where it shouldn’t. Right? Sounds so easy doesn’t it? Makes me wonder why I haven’t been doing it all along. It’s that discipline thing again that keeps tripping me up.
Improving on the discipline is the key to getting this right in 2012. I think it’s time to become OCD on this baby too. What I am going to is this, I am going to write down every cent that leaves my wallet or bank account. Every cent. My gut feel is that this will help on two fronts. The first is I can see where I am spending my money and secondly it will also cut down on the frivolous spending that happens when you don’t monitor where your money is going. I am also going to look for a proper budget tool online or if I can’t find one I will make one.
Another thing I need to do is earn more and spend less. These things sound so easy! I have had a few challenges over the last couple of years on the employment front but I decided to take control of that after having the rug pulled one too many times by employers. A lesson I have learnt over the last 18 months is if you don’t write your own pay cheque someone else is pulling your strings. As sad as it is to say job security is a thing of the past and you need to control your own destiny. If you believe your job is safe and secure you probably still believe in the tooth fairy. Part of this plan will become clearer in the next thing I plan to work on for 2012. On the spending less side of things I have made the decision to get rid of my car and buy a scooter. Yip, crazy right? There are a few reasons I am doing this but I’ve posted about it before in Project Scooter and if you want to read more about that decision you can read about it there. There are a few other areas that I am cutting back on for various reasons which I’ll share with you in the months to come.
I am also going to read as much as I can on becoming financially literate over the next 12 months. I’m not getting any younger and it is time to get smart and take control. I am going to read a book a month (as per number 2 of the Seven Things) and if I come across any gems I’ll be sure to share them here.
It is embarrassing saying you don’t have things under control in your personal finances and I’m hoping me being honest about my lack of financial IQ can help someone else get control of their financial affairs. If you have anything to add or if you have any tips that help you please feel free to share them in the comments section below…