In the past, I would always feel like money just passed by and that it appeared when needed. I’m sure you know this feeling. You work hard, you earn money, but a few days before your next payday, you seem to be stretching your budget for dear life just to make ends meet.
I needed something more stable. Something better. This is how I learned to do some research and how I found 5 ways you can take control of your finances without trying too hard.
Monitor all spending.
Last year, I started monitoring all of my spendings. I would list down in a notebook all of the things I spent my money on. It did not matter if it was just five cents. It went on my list.
At the end of the month, I would list down everything in an excel file and then calculate how much I spent. End of the year, I was shocked to see that I have spent so much on miscellaneous things, things that I don't even remember anymore.
This definitely helped me to be more mindful of the small and miscellaneous things that I would buy. This also helped me in saving money.
Implement a no-buy year.
This means that I will only buy what is essential especially when it comes to skincare and makeup which I already had tons of. When you do a no-buy year, you set rules and boundaries that you need to follow. Shopping your stash is also a must!
The Twenty Challenge.
Every time I receive a twenty bill, it goes straight to Miss Piggy, the coin bank. At the end of the year, I take out everything and put it in the bank. Instant savings.
This is easier on people because, for some, a twenty is easier to let go of than a fifty or a hundred. Now, you can be flexible and make it a dollar, five, or ten. Choose one and stick to it. At the end of the year, you'd be shocked at how much you've put aside.
Always balance your checkbook.
This is crucial because a balanced checkbook is a testament to being able to handle and track your finances. This is also one of the best ways to avoid finance charges for overdrafts that can cause a lot and can damage your credit score.
I make sure that I write every check that I issue and then I double-check to make sure that there’s enough to cover that check when it goes through.
If you are like me and you find yourself in multiple debts, the fastest way to be able to take control of your finances is via debt consolidation. It’s the easiest to handle and it can really help you cut down and make payments in a manner that would suit you. You can learn more about it so that you can figure out what would be best for your situation.
It took me years to finally have a grasp on how to take control of my finances but I am glad that I finally did. I think this is one of those cases where it's better late than never and where once you’ve started doing it and seeing the fruits of your efforts, you’ll never want to go back to the time when you had no control over your finances.
It is liberating and empowering being able to function without worry about money and that’s something that every person should have.