Right now (unless I’ve already bored you) you’re in step #1 – you’re here reading this because you genuinely want to better your financial situation! And for that I congratulate you ;) You could be on facebook, or watching the latest viral video right now, but you’re not. You’re here with me on this personal finance site. So good work, step #1 has been completed.
Step #2 involves acting on what you’ve learned from your research. What will you do when you’re finished reading this? Will you click away and totally forget what you just read? I hope not! Or else you just wasted 5 minutes of your life ;) Luckily there aren’t many “actionable” items from today’s post, but when you move to the next one on your list – My Money Blog, MSN, Consumerist, etc – make sure to pause for a second when you’re done and reflect on what you’ve just learned (or what you’ll need to do to make something happen!).
It’s kinda hard in this fast paced world of ours, but taking that last step before switching over to the next thing really helps allow the stuff to sink in. And if you’re too busy to act on it right then, draft up an email and type out what’s important right there in the headline – then send it to yourself. I do this at *least* 4 times a day, and I can’t express how helpful it is with keeping me on track.
The last step I like to advise (and my personal favorite) is to use time to your advantage! How often do you look back and wish you would have started saving 5 years earlier, or contributed to your 401(k) from day 1? Probably a little too much than you care to admit, and it’s crazy frustrating. But you know what? We can change that! We can’t do anything about the past, but we can sure rock out the future. If you’re trying to get rid of debt, or start saving for a new home or emergency fund, get on it TODAY! Tomorrow you’ll be much happier and every single day that follows will only help move you closer to financial freedom.
5 years ago I about $3k in my 401(k) and couldn’t care less. Now it’s at $110k+ and I appreciate every last paycheck that continues to fund it! $50 here, and a few hundred there is nice, but watching it grow and compound over time is simply incredible. The only way you’re gonna get there though is by starting. Do yourself a favor and get on with the game plan! That way when we look back to THIS day, you can give yourself a hearty pat on the back and be that more thankful for taking action when you did ;)
PS: Some of my favorite tools:
|Personal Capital (FREE) -- If you’re looking for a robust financial tracker, Personal Capital is the way to go! They’re like Mint, but on steroids and have much better tools for investment and net worth tracking. // Full review|
|Digit (FREE) -- A super easy (and automated) way to save. Every day Digit analyzes your income and expenses and will push money aside for you any time it sees extra sitting there. I've saved over $4,000 myself using them so far! // Full review|
|Acorns -- Having trouble finding money to invest? Check out Acorns – they round up all your transactions to the nearest $1.00 and drops the difference into an investment portfolio for you. Easy way to start investing! // Full review|