(Last Updated On: February 16, 2018)
We all work for money and seek to exchange it for necessary goods and services, such as utilities, food, housing and all the important things we need to survive. How much money we make determines our lifestyle and our financial authority during our lifetime. Time is life and we spend life working for money to meet our needs and wants. Having said that, I am positive then that success has to be pretty important to you, isn’t it? Unfortunately, some of us don’t maximize our full potential and we live below the mark. However, with some common sense solutions, we can redeem the time by:
- learning from past mistakes
- making good decisions
- being accountable to others
- spending our time wisely
- leveraging best-practices regarding
There is hope. We can live our best life yet!
Determined to succeed
We all have “wants.” How we pace ourselves in our pursuit of these wants, determines our prudence. How we juggle them against our needs, determine whether we become financially stable, or wealthy, and how long it takes us to get there. How we leverage time, opportunity and knowledge, is also an indication of where we will find ourselves financially in the future.
Since our habits result in our present and eventual outcome, we must immediately seek to audit our habits and follow good principles that will guarantee a successful life.
Breaking bad money habits, I can’t afford to be poor!
All of us have some sort of bad habit. In order to break these unwanted and regressive habits, we must have a plan. Any bad habit is undesirable but what we can’t afford in this context, are bad financial habits. These will affect every area of our lives and suppress any likelihood of successful living. Failure in this area affects a wide range of other areas in our lives. I don’t even have to list those here… Let’s try this little but important exercise I developed. Let me know if it works 🙂
3 ways to break bad financial habits
- Stop and examine what is causing you to engage in these bad habits
- Identify the root cause(s) e.g.
- You don’t budget because you believe you don’t have enough
- You believe that it is too late to change old bad habits
- You live beyond your means (usually a big one)
- Does it (bad habit) give you pleasure or relieve stress? If so, identify what these are: e.g.
- Do you like to spend because you like nice things
- You try to keep up with the proverbial Jones’
- For any regrets and bad decisions, first forgive yourself – that’s the only way, no one is perfect
- Replace that pain with positive thoughts and an action plan to overcome
- Pray about it and declare that that pain will no longer cause you to make bad decisions
- Identify the root cause(s) e.g.
- Write down the plan you will use to overcome your challenges
- Discuss and create the plan with a suitably trained friend or financial counselor
- Set short-term goals within a long-term plan for financial success
- Execute the plan
- Be accountable to the friend above (counselor) about your finances from here on
- Celebrate each successful fulfillment of the plan at work
- Revise and tweak the plan
Surround yourself with people who inspire you
Now let’s look at “time” again and how it plays a huge factor in our success. How we utilize time and who we spend it with is key to implementing and sustaining all that we did before in the exercise. Look for people that inspire you and by that, I am not saying to look down on others or not associate at all. Rather, associate with those that encourage good lifestyle habits. Set the boundaries concerning what you do and how much time you spend with others. Sometimes that “others” can be anyone.
I am trading time for money and earning money for my life
We trade our time every day for money and that’s why our time is so important. In the marketplace, there is basically a “money for your life” exchange going on. Our time equals money and money is what we trade our lives for. The only other things we do when we are not trying to make money is;
- rest, relax
- spend time with family and friends, go to church etc.
- reinvest that time into education/training to increase our value
Time is money! Time is life! Time has value!
The list will vary according to who we are but essentially, our time is our greatest commodity. It is our greatest asset and also our greatest “liability” if not used wisely. We must use it responsibly and to the best of our ability. So when I tell you I am busy, please understand that I mean no offense. I am spending some of my life-currency somewhere else at present. When we spend time with people or an activity, we are literally using up (spending) our lives and giving away value. Use your time wisely. Time is life Click To Tweet
My decisions and actions create my reality
Then we have the reality of it all. Our current disposition, our power, our worth. Our present reality is the collective sum of all our thoughts and decisions we have made in life so far. These thoughts and decisions have determined this present reality for us. If we truly accept this, from now on, our greatest desire will be to ensure that every decision we make, is the best one according to tried and true methods.
You may now be wondering why I have used the word “determine” so often in this post. I have certainly overdone it by stuffing it in this article many times over.
The word “determine” (there he goes again) is a very powerful word. In a nutshell, it means to settle, to decide or come to a resolution. Which then calls to mind another word, “accountability” or personal responsibility. When we combine all that with the fact that we are the ones who make the decisions in and for our lives, we unleash the potential or possibility we have, to change the present and the future.
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I must take personal responsibility, be accountable
Since we are the ones who make the decisions concerning our lives, we must take full responsibility for them. We cannot blame anyone but ourselves for any negative situation caused by our decisions. In order to succeed financially, we must have a clear plan and stick to it. It’s a shame that this is not systematically taught in schools.
Do you know that all of us have had the same clean slate at birth? Yes, we may have come from different backgrounds and may have had some hardships and less learning aptitude. However, that is no excuse. There are many who have overcome great odds to be successful and we are no different from them. In some cases, we have had more of an opportunity than many. I am not coming down on anyone but that’s a fact.
Our mindset is what is responsible for our current financial status in life. I am assuming that we all embrace change for the better, so if you do let’s change our stinking mindset. It betrays us and robs us of exceptional living. Why not spend the rest of your life making the most it and being the best that you can be. We have to guard our minds, what we think, we become.
Proverbs 4:22-24 For they are life to those who find them And health to all their body. Watch over your heart with all diligence, For from it flow the springs of life. Put away from you a deceitful mouth And put devious speech far from you.…
We must choose between a victim or creator mindset. We are what we believe
If we believe that chance or bad luck is responsible, then our chance of failure is increased or multiplied by the infinite possibilities of failure that exist. Why add all of that extra mess to our lives, Click To Tweetall on our own? There is more than enough negative in our lives already. Why live with that additional increase of negativity and potential failure? We must escape from all that trash now, today! Speak life!
Common-sense solutions for successful living
Let’s look at the following question and its answer:
Q. Is everything expensive or I just can’t afford it?
Ans. We can’t afford something because we did not properly prepare for our current needs or “wants,” not necessarily because it’s expensive.
Do you agree with this answer? The thing is, whether we agree or not, this statement is essentially true.
We have no control over the economic climate and high prices for everything under the sun such as;
- Education – (multiply by number of children in household)
- Real Estate
- Funerals – (yes, a costly expense for families)
- Car expenses – (multiply by number of vehicles in household)
We cannot change or control the world’s economy, therefore, our proper and only course of action is to be on top of the economic climate. How do we do that? We do this by careful analysis of our reality and the actions needed to change our situation.
Some actions can be;
- Seek jobs in high demand
- Increase our worth through acquiring new skills and education
- Decrease our expenditure significantly
- Increase our income by creating other streams of income
- Sell our skills – no more freebies
- Proper investing, not just saving but actually making money work for us
- Staying away from debt – the number 1 advice always
- Staying out debt, staying far from debt, settling debt as fast as possible
- No debt incurrence apart from mortgage or good debt
*Redundancy is done on purpose.
We cannot simply remain victims of chance or pray for miracles without acting. It doesn’t work like that.
We must be steadfast in our determination to succeed by first of all having a plan, a vision and acting on it daily. We must study and make adjustments to the plan, in order to stay on course in any climate.
Since we humans are prone to habit, whether good or bad, we must ensure that we are in charge of every moment. Staying the course and making good decisions is more than just wishful thinking. It is knowing that our decisions will define our success or failure.
Trees don’t grow overnight and so, success is a concept that must be nurtured along the way. Let’s turn around from the path of failure and use the following recommendations to achieve new and determined life.
- We must change bad habits and employ best practices.
- We must make good choices.
- We must seek mentoring and be accountable to someone who has already succeeded in our aspirations.
Please share your comments with us. We really want to hear from you.