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Are You One or Two Paychecks Away from Bankruptcy?
Andrew Horton (http://www.andrewhorton.co.za)
Most of the incredibly effective ideas, tools and techniques that I am going to introduce to you in this article, are not new. They are all common sense and really simple to apply in your life and if you use them will make a massive difference to your financial wealth. The one huge challenge that you face though is that as easy as they are to use and apply, so easy are they to avoid and neglect to carry out every day. If you are satisfied with the state of your financial health and you feel that you are on the path to create all the financial security you need, then you don’t need to apply any of these concepts in your life. If on the other hand you are like the majority of people out there and you are one or two pay checks away from bankruptcy, then this article will most certainly be of great value to you.
Do you have any idea how you spend all your money each month or are you flying by the seat of your pants and hoping that you have enough money at the end of each month? Most people have far too much month at the end of their money, but they have no idea why. The first place to start is to build a budget and to work to reduce or eliminate all unnecessary expenditure.
Identify all your absolute necessities every month, things like rent, food, transport costs, school fees etc. Build a budget to take care of these first and then allocate the money that is left over as follows:
- 10 % – 30 % of your total income towards savings or as an additional payment towards paying off any credit card debt you may have accumulated. Pay off all debt as soon as possible. Until you have eliminated all non-real estate debt from your life, you must focus as many of your financial resources as possible on eliminating this debt. You are effectively on an entertainment and luxury item freeze, until you are back to a zero debt level. This must be an automatic debit from your account every month, you must never even see this money.
- 2 – 10 % of your total income to invest into your on-going education. I introduced a discipline of investing a minimum of 10 % of my income into coaches, books, seminars and personal growth materials a number of years ago. Within five years I had achieved financial independence.
- Build a budget for entertainment, clothing and restaurant dinners etc. This money must be put into a separate account and when this is finished, there is no more funding for these items, for that month. Never ever pull money from anywhere else to fund these luxuries.
Increase your income.
This seems really simple and really obvious. Well do you have a set of specific and very clear goals and plans to increase your income over the next year, five years or even ten years? If you don’t have a crystal clear vision of what you want in your future and you continue to live a life where you live your life like a paper cup blowing in a car park, with no real intent or plan, something amazing is going to happen over the next five years, NOTHING! You will arrive somewhere five years from now a little more wrinkled, a lot more disillusioned and further in debt.
Action Idea: Invest the time to build a vision for your future financial position, create a set of crystal clear goals that will support this and then break these goals back into bite size chunks or achievable projects. Explore each project and build an action list, which will help you to identify all the individual actions you must carry out every day, to achieve each project.
Schedule time into your dairy to carry out these tasks every day, apply sufficient discipline to do the work, measure your progress as often as possible and you will see your income grow and your financial position improve.
Once you begin to budget, you commit to eliminate all unnecessary expenditure from your life, you build a financial blueprint for creating the financial security you want in your future and you work your plan. All you need to do is remain disciplined, have patience and you will soon create the exact financial freedom you desire.