December 22, 2022

When It Comes to Finances, Face the Numbers

If you’re struggling with financial avoidance or denial, take action to get your money matters back on track. Money matters are too important to ignore.

First, think about what you learned in childhood. Think about what your parents taught you about money. Talk to family members about their money beliefs. Many people feel embarrassed about their debt, ashamed that they let bank statements pile up unread. But that shame keeps you stuck. Try to move past the self-blame so you can take some steps toward financial health.

Are You Avoiding Your Financial Reality?

How do you know if you’re avoiding reality regarding finances? Here are some of the clues:

  • Do you try to put money and finances out of mind?
  • Do you avoid talking about money with family and friends?
  • Do you approach your mailbox with dread and avoid opening bank statements or credit card bills?
  • Do you know what your credit score is?
  • Do you know your true net worth (assets minus your debts)?

If you can relate to any of these feelings and behaviors, it may be time to take a hard look at your relationship with money.

Keep Tabs. 

Tracking your income and your spending is critical to healthy finances. If you’re not tracking money coming in and money going out, you don’t know if you’re spending your resources on the things that really matter to you.

Develop a Spending Plan. 

For some people, the word “budget,” like the word “diet,” calls to mind feeling deprived. Instead of figuring out where to cut back, think about what you want to spend. If going to concerts or sporting events is really important, you might spend more money on those outings and less on dining out or cable television. That way, you’ll get the most bang for your buck.

Make It Easy On Yourself. 

Use automated systems as much as possible. Arrange to have a portion of your paycheck automatically deposited into your savings and retirement accounts. Set up automatic reminders to alert you when a bill is due.

Use Tools. 

Technology makes it easier than ever to stay on track financially. Various apps can help you track spending and set spending and saving targets.

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