“Freedom and wealth is an outcome of “Time”; the most precious asset that we all possess. Time however is a variable to each individual as our actions from our choices determine the longevity and returns from this asset. To maximize the return on this asset is determined by the energy that we put forth in developing our financial education, relationships and health.”
In your twenties your future is too far away to think about and what is important is the “here and now”.
Your financial habits are not great, as you will have probably maxed out your credit card, delayed any savings and focused mainly on pleasure spending.
Your twenties are the time to have fun and its ok to make financial mistakes. However, the bad financial habits that you have accumulated in your twenties need to be gone before you head into your thirties.
Being in your thirties is different, you become more responsible and yes a little more serious about life.
Living in a cold damp house where it was party central every weekend doesn’t seem so appealing. The comforts of a warm centrally located apartment with your partner or a flatmate is the place you really want to be. You start to drink wine and your parties go from 100’s to dinner parties of 6! No police get called to your dinner parties!
You will find that children, family, marriage, buying houses are the main topics of discussion amongst your friends.
Shopping. Bills. More bills. Your health. Appointments. Money. Credit cards. Rent. Mortgages. Tax returns. Work. Some of these things were present in your twenties, and if you really wanted to ignore them you could but now you can’t.
If you make the right financial choices in your twenties, many of the thirty something life events become not so stressful and far more pleasurable. The reason why,is because you have a good financial base!
However, if you don’t make the right financial choices in your twenties, your life will be one of financial struggle – not only in your thirties but for ever.
“Money is only a tool. It will take you where you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver” Ayn Rand
By pursing these 10 Financial Goals before you reach 30, you will have set the foundation for you to enjoy financial security and independence for the rest of your life.
1. Know Your Personal Financial Profile
“When it comes to money and so many other things in life, understanding your weaknesses and strengths can help you with your future plans.” Tagene Brown-McBean
I know that this doesn’t look like a financial goal however it is the key to your success in achieving your financial goals. You need to know what your values and beliefs are around money.
What is your risk profile? Does spending money give you pleasure? Have you got good saving habits? When you see something you really want, do you justify to yourself how much you deserve it even though you cant afford it. Do you like credit cards? Are you ever able to pay your credit cards off in full every month?
Do you bury you head in the sand when it comes to dealing with money?
There are lots of financial personality profiles assessments on the internet and many of them are free. Here is a link to a great article on personalities and money. How Your Personality Affects Your Finances
Go and find out what your relationship is like with money. Then decide if you have the commitment, desire and motivation to pursue these financial goals before you turn thirty.
2. Write Down Your Financial Goals.
“By failing to prepare you are planning to fail” Benjamin Franklin
Once you have an understanding of your financial personality, you can then start to plan your financial future.
Write down your financial goals – short, medium and long term goals.
The timeframes you set for these goals need to be aligned to your financial personality.
Use the KISS and SMART metrics to write your goals. (Keep It Simple Smart) and (Specific, Measurable, Action, Realistic, and Time Bound).
This financial goal needs you to be disciplined and focused. If you struggle with these personality traits – thats ok. Find someone who can help you or go on the internet and look for templates that you can use to guide you to writing your goals.
Find out how to write your financial goals that are aligned to you and your current priorities in life.
If you don’t take the time to put a financial plan in place by the time you reach your thirties, you increase your chances of failing to achieve those financial outcomes that will enable you to live your dream life.
3. Stop Impulse Spending
“Remember, buying something is not the problem
Give up your bad habits around spending. The sooner you give up the habit of impulse spending, the better off you will be financially.
Try to understand why this behaviour is important to you as it does not serve you well. This behaviour does not support wealth creation. If you continue to spend impulsively your financial future going into your thirties and beyond, will be a struggle.
Don’t stop enjoying your life and spending money all together. You should be spending money on things that make you feel good. Just be realistic about your spending habits. If your spending is reckless and impulsive, then do something about it.
4. Get an App To Track Your Expenses
“There are plenty of ways to get ahead. The first is so basic I’m almost embarrassed to say it: spend less than you earn” Paul Clitheroe
If you are in your twenties and you have a negative perception or no motivation to budget or track your expenses you need to change right now.
Holding on to these beliefs will hold you back from having any financial security in your thirties and later in life. Keeping a track of of your expenses is one of the key financial habits that will enable you to have financial wealth and independence in your life.
There are some amazing budgeting apps that you can download. Go search for these apps as they enable you to budget and monitor your expenses with ease and no stress.
When you reach thirty it is essential that you are able to live within your means otherwise you will find yourself drowning in debt.
Remember your thirties will bring more expense and cost to your life. Good budgeting habits will ensure you are prepared to manage these extra costs and live within your means.
5. Learn About Investing
“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune”. Jim Rohn
To create long term wealth you need to become educated about investment.
The best time to start getting the basics sorted around investment and start building your wealth is now – as you head into your thirties.
With sound investment planning in your twenties you should have an investment portfolio up and running by the time you are thirty.
Investing in your future now, before you turn thirty, ensures that you will reap the financial rewards of security and independence for the rest of your life.Advertising
6. Learn How To Manage Your Debt
“Debt is like any other trap, easy enough to get into, but hard enough to get out of.” Henry Wheeler Shaw
Don’t borrow money to buy depreciating assets is a key rule to managing debt.
Debt can work in your favour, but only when you use it for things that tend to rise in value over a reasonable period of time.
Using borrowed money to invest in a house, a business or an investment (which includes your education) is the sensible use of debt. However you still have to pay the debt of and if you don have a plan to manage your debt, then interest will compound and your debt will triple.
Borrowing to buy a new phone, pair of shoes, TV, or car is not a smart use of debt.
Get rid of your BAD DEBT – credit cards, higher purchase or car payments. Avoid credit card debt like the plague.
There is a very simple rule to follow when you spending, if you have to borrow money for it, then you simply can’t afford it – that includes using credit cards.
7. Get Insurance And Start Saving For Emergencies
“The habit of savings is itself and education; it fosters every virtue, teaches self denial, cultivates the sense of order, trains to forethought and so broadens the mind” T.T Mauger
In your twenties the concept of an “personal emergency” is never thought about because it just doesn’t happen in your twenties. If an emergency occurs usually your parents will sort it out.
However that it all changes in your thirties and things like Life Insurance, Income Protection Insurance and Mortgage Payments start to appear in your lives.
You need to protect your future. Setting up a fund and getting insurance for you to call on in an emergency is a great financial goal to have underway as you enter into your thirties.
8.Stop Relying On Your Parents For Money
“You cannot help people permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves.” Abraham Lincoln
If you are still relying on your parents to financially support you when you are thirty, you should be worried.
I get that you may have a student loan and in your twenties your parents were your ATM machine however this is a bad habit to maintain as you go into your thirties.Advertising
It is pretty much guaranteed that if you have bad debt and still rely on a monthly allowance from your parents then your chances of having financial independence and creating wealth in your life will not happen.
That is your reality.
9. Start A Retirement Account
There is no way you would have missed all the hype that has been promoted about how important it is to start saving for your retirement in your twenties.
The book Get A Financial Life by Beth Kobliner focuses on helping people in their twenties and thirties get their personal finances sorted. In her book Beth Kobliner outlines an example to show how the power of time on your investments works.
“Suppose you set aside $1,000 a year from age 25 to age 64 in a retirement account that earns 5% a year (historically, stocks return about 8%, but we’ll be conservative). That’s $39,000 total you invest. By the time you turn 65, you’ll have $126,840. If you don’t get started with saving until you’re 35, you’ll only have $69,760. Starting just ten years earlier would have doubled your total. Yes, doubled.”
When you are investing in your future with the goal to achieving financial freedom, then time is your biggest ally. Start saving and investing now before you reach thirty.
10. Develop A Financial Abundant Mindset
“When we do what we love to do; when we are generous and seek to help others; when we live within our means and save money; when we always seek a more specialized knowledge…we then have an abundant mindset, and are bound to realize financial abundance”.
How you handle your relationship with money in your twenties will influence how you live the rest of your life.
Starting to develop a mindset that supports financial abundance, will help you to prosper in the future both financially and personally.
A person who has a financially abundant mindset is one who has developed knowledge and skills to acquire financial wealth however balances that with philanthropy and generous giving.
Pursing these 10 financial goals before you reach thirty will guarantee you financial security and independence for the rest of your life.
You have the power and the choice as you head into your thirties to create the life you desire.
I hope you choose well.Advertising
‘Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds nought and six, result misery” Charles Dickens
Published on November 20, 2018
The Best Ways to Save Money Even Impulsive Spenders Can Get Behind
The truth is, there are many “money saving guides” online, but most don’t cover the root issue for not saving.
Once I’d discovered a few key factors that allowed me to save 10k in one year, I realized why most articles couldn’t help me. The problem is that even with the right strategies you can still fail to save money. You need to have the right systems in place and the right mindset.
In this guide, I’ll cover the best ways to save money — practical yet powerful steps you can take to start saving more. It won’t be easy but with hard work, I’m confident you’ll be able to save more money–even if you’re an impulsive spender.
Table of Contents
Why Your Past Prevents You from Saving Money
Are you constantly thinking about your financial mistakes?
If so, these thoughts are holding you back from saving.
I get it, you wish you could go back in time to avoid your financial downfalls. But dwelling over your past will only rob you from your future. Instead, reflect on your mistakes and ask yourself what lessons you can learn from them.
It wasn’t easy for me to accept that I had accumulated thousands of dollars in credit card debt. Once I did, I started heading in the right direction. Embrace your past failures and use them as an opportunity to set new financial goals.
For example, after accepting that you’re thousands of dollars in debt create a plan to be debt free in a year or two. This way when you’ll be at peace even when you get negative thoughts about your finances. Now you can focus more time on saving and less on your past financial mistakes.
How to Effortlessly Track Your Spending
Stop manually tracking your spending.
Leverage powerful analytic tools such as Personal Capital and these money management apps to do the work for you. This tool has worked for me and has kept me motivated to why I’m saving in the first place. Once you login to your Personal Capital dashboard, you’re able to view your net worth.
When I’d first signed up with Personal Capital, I had a negative net worth, but this motivated me to save more. With this tool, you can also view your spending patterns, expenses, and how much money you’re saving.
Use your net worth as your north star to saving more. Whenever you experience financial setbacks, view how far you’ve come along. Saving money is only half the battle, being consistent is the other half.
The Truth on Why You Keep Failing
Saving money isn’t sexy. If it was, wouldn’t everyone be doing it?
Some people are natural savers, but most are impulsive spenders. Instead of denying that you’re an impulsive spender, embrace it.
Don’t try to save 60 to 70% of your income if this means you’ll live a miserable life. Saving money isn’t a race but a marathon. You’re saving for retirement and for large purchases.
If you’re currently having a hard time saving, start spending more money on nice things. This may sound counterintuitive but hear me out. Wouldn’t it be better to save $200 each month for 12 months instead of $500 for 3 months?
Most people run into trouble because they create budgets that set them up for failure. This system won’t work for those who are frugal, but chances are they don’t need help saving. This system is for those who can’t save money and need to be rewarded for their hard work.
Only because you’re buying nice things doesn’t mean that you’ll save less. Here are some rules you should have in place:
- Save more than 50% of your available money (after expenses)
- Only buy nice things after saving
- Automate your savings with automatic bank transfers
These are the same rules that helped me save thousands each year while buying the latest iPhone. Focus only on items that are important to you. Remember, you can afford anything but not everything.
How to Foolproof Yourself out of Debt
Personal finance is a game. On one end, you’re earning money; and on the to other, you’re saving. But what ends up counting in the end isn’t how much you earn but how much you save. Research shows that about 60% of Americans spend more than they save.
So how can you separate yourself from the 60%?
By not accumulating more debt. This way you’ll have more money to save and avoid having more financial obligations. A great way to stop accumulating debt is using cash to pay for all your transactions.
This will be challenging, depending on how reliant you are with your credit card, but it’s worth the effort. Not only will you stop accruing debt, but you’ll also be more conscious with what you buy.
For example, you’ll think twice about purchasing a new $200 headphone despite having the cash to buy them. According to a poll conducted by The CreditCards.com, 5 out of 6 Americans are impulsive spenders.
Telling yourself that you’ll have the discipline to not buy things won’t cut it. This is equal to having junk food in your fridge while trying to eat healthy–it’s only a matter of time before you slip. By using cash to make your purchases, you’ll spend less and save more.
A Proven Formula to Skyrocket Your Savings
Having proven systems in place to help you save more is important, but they’re not the best way to save money.
You can search for dozens of ways to save money, but there’ll always be a limit. Instead of spending the majority of your effort saving, look for ways to increase your income. The truth is that once you have the right systems in place, saving is easy.
What’s challenging is earning more money. There are many routes you can take to achieve this. For example, you can work long and hard at your current job to earn a raise. But there’s one problem–you’re depending on someone else to give you a raise.
Your company will have to have the budget, and you’ll have to know how to toot your own horn to get this raise. This isn’t to say that earning a raise is impossible, but things are better when you’re in control right? That’s why building a side-hustle is the best way to increase your income.
Think of your side-hustle as a part-time job doing something you enjoy. You can sell items on eBay for a profit, or design websites for small businesses. Building a side-hustle will be on the hardest things you’ll do, be too stubborn to quit.
During the early stages, you won’t be making money and that’s okay. Since you already have a source of income, you won’t be dependent on your side-hustle to pay for your expenses. Depending on how much time you invest in your side-hustle, it can one day replace your current income.
Whatever route you take, focus more on earning and save as much as possible. You have more control than you give yourself credit for.
Transform Yourself into a Saving Money Machine
Saving money isn’t complicated but it’s one of the hardest things you’ll do.
By learning from your mistakes and rewarding yourself after saving you’ll save more. What would you do with an extra $200 or $500 each month? To some, this is life-changing money that can improve the quality of their lives.
The truth is saving money is an art. Save too much and you’ll quit, but save too little and you’ll pay for the consequences in the future. Saving money takes effort and having the right systems in place.
Imagine if you’d started saving an extra $100 this next month? Or, saved $20K in one year? Although it’s hard to imagine, this can be your reality if you follow the principles covered in this guide.
Take a moment to brainstorm which goals you’d be able to reach if you had extra money each month. Use these goals as motivation to help you stay on track on your journey to saving more. If I was able to save thousands of dollars with little guidance, imagine what you’ll be able to do.
What are you waiting for? Go and start saving money, the sky is your limit.
Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com