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5 Golden Rules For Lending Money To Friends And Family

5 Golden Rules For Lending Money To Friends And Family

You may not be able to buy friendship with money, but you can certainly destroy friendships with it.

Lending money to friends and family is a very delicate affair, and like Dave Ramsey, I would flat out recommend never lending friends money, since money is always a difficult subject to talk about, personal loans can often lead to communication breakdowns which can wreck any relationship.

That said, if you really want to loan your friends some money, here are 5 key tips to follow to ensure that this loan does not destroy your relationships. If you are really lucky, you might even get back the money you loaned.

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1. Understand that you probably won’t get the money back.

If your friends or family are asking you for a loan, then they are not asking a bank for a loan. That is not a good sign. If you do want to loan out money to them, you need to stop and think about how important getting the money back is compared to not ruining your relations. If the latter is more important to you, it may be better to just make the loan a gift.

However, if you decide to make it a loan, you need to consider how important it is to get that money back. You need to be consistent about this, so that both you and the person you are loaning it are on the same page when it comes to paying the loan back.

2. Make a contract.

Your friend may want to make the loan a handshake agreement, promising that they will pay the money back at a certain point. Don’t let them.

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As you are making the loan, you get to set the terms. If you want your money back, a handshake agreement means nothing – a contract does. You can get a free promissory note here from Suze Orman which will let you set the terms of the loan. Also, get the loan signed by both of you and notarized. The latter part is critical.

If the worst comes to worst and you decide to take your former friend to court, a notary can stop them from claiming that they never signed anything. Your friend should have no problem being specific about repayment terms if they really intend to pay you back, so hold them to their word and get the contract written.

3. Don’t expect any favors back.

When someone owes you money, you may feel like they owe you something beyond the cash you gave them. You might think they should help you out with that weekend project you’ve got, or buy you a drink next Saturday.Thinking like that is a bad idea.

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If you signed a contract with your friend, then your friend agreed to pay the money back and nothing else. Expecting more is improper and makes it look like you are lording your better finances over him. Don’t hesitate to be firm about getting your money back, but don’t use it to get other perks or favors from your friend.

4. Ask if there are other ways you can help.

There are always other ways to help your friends beyond giving them money. You can teach them ways to make or save money. You could also help them around the house or office. If they are having problems with bills, you could even offer to pay the bill directly instead of loaning them the money.

If your friend is asking for help with a personal finance loan because they have a problem. Find out what the problem is and see if there are other ways you can help fix it. If they do not want to tell you, then point out that they have no right asking you for money if they won’t tell you what the money is for.

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5. Learn to say “no”.

As noted at the top, I would recommend against loaning any of your friends or family money; however, you may also have some close people who you consider reliable who have just hit a rough patch, and are confident that they will eventually repay you.

On the other hand, there are those family members who you would never trust with 50 cents. I have a family member who is incredibly compassionate and heart-warming – and that is the exact reason I would never loan her anything, because I know she would blow the money on the first sob story she ran into.

At certain points, you just have to say “no”. Your friend or family member may get mad, cry, or throw a tantrum, but this is your money. Offer other help as noted above, but learning to say “no” is critical to succeeding in general.

If your friend is willing to break it off with you over a sum of money, then they were never really much of a friend at all.

Featured photo credit: Next Avenue via nextavenue.org

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Last Updated on October 14, 2020

Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

Had a Bad Day? 7 Ways to Rebound From It and Feel Good Again

Today didn’t turn out as you planned, but it doesn’t mean you’re weak. It simply means that you’re human, and you’re not bad just because you had a bad day.

“Not everyday is a good day but there is something good in every day.” -Alice Morse Earle

It’s not the end of the world when you find yourself thinking “I had a bad day,” but it can feel like it. You may have had plans that fell apart, experiences that set you back, and interactions that only did harm.

You may have started the day thinking you could take on it all, only to find you could hardly get out of bed. When you have a bad day, you can forget to look at the good.

Sometimes, self-care helps us to remember why we are worth it. It helps us to recharge and reset our mindset. It helps us to know that there are still options and that the day isn’t over yet.

Love yourself today, no matter how hard it’s been. That’s the way to find yourself amidst the hardships you have. That’s how you center yourself and regain focus and live a more meaningful life. Give yourself some credit and compassion.

Here are 7 ways to rebound from a bad day using self-compassion as a tool. If you had a bad day, these are for you!

1. Make a Gratitude List

In a study on gratitude, psychologists Dr. Robert A Emmons and Dr. Michael E. McCullough conducted an experiment where one group of people wrote out gratitude lists for ten weeks while another group wrote about irritations. The study found that the group that wrote about gratitude reported more optimistic mindsets in their lives[1].

Overall, having a gratitude list improved well-being and made one truly grateful by counting the blessings in their lives.

Write a list of what you are grateful for if you had a bad day. Make it as long as you like, but also remember to note why you’re grateful for each thing you write.

What has given you the most joy? What has set you up for better days? Keep a tally of triumphs in mind, especially when you do have the bad days.

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The day doesn’t define you, and you still have things of value that surround you. These could be material things, spiritual connections and experiences, relationships, basic needs, emotional and mental well-being, physical health, progress towards hopes and dreams, or simply being alive.

Here are some other simple ways to practice gratitude.

2. Write in a Journal

Journaling affects your overall mental health, which also affects physical health and aids in the management of stress, depression, anxiety, and more[2].

All you need is a pen and paper, or you could do an online, password-protected journal such as Penzu. The key is to get started and not pressure yourself on how polished or perfect it is. You don’t need to have prior experience to start journal writing. Just start.

Write out everything that is bothering you for 15 minutes. This helps with rumination, processing problems, and can even aid with brainstorming solutions.

However you approach it, you can find patterns of thinking that no longer serve you and start to transform your overall mental state. This will impact all areas of your life and is a great coping skill.

3. Meditate

Meditation can help you overcome negative thought patterns, worrying about the future, dwelling on the past, or struggling to overcome a bad day[3]. It shifts your mentality and helps you focus on the present or any one thing you truly want to focus on.

Here is an example of a meditation you can do:

Get into a comfortable position. Close your eyes. Rest your body, release tension, and unclench your jaw. Tighten and release each muscle group in a body scan for progressive muscle relaxation.

Focus on your breath, taking a few deep breaths. Let your belly expand when you breathe in for diaphragmatic breathing. Empty yourself completely of air, then return to normal breathing.

Next, focus on the idea of self-love and let it erase negative thoughts. Think about the ways you’ve been judging yourself, with the narratives coming up that your mind may create.

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Give yourself unconditional love and release judgment. Take your time meditating on this because you matter. This is particularly important if you had a bad day.

Check out this article for more on how to get started with a meditation practice.

4. Do Child’s Pose

Yoga Outlet says:

“Child’s Pose is a simple way to calm your mind, slow your breath, and restore a feeling of peace and safety. Practicing the pose before bedtime can help to release the worries of the day. Practicing in the morning can you help transition from sleeping to waking.”[4]

When you do Child’s Pose, it can be between difficult positions in yoga, or it can be anytime you feel you need a rest. It helps you recover from difficulties and relax the mind.

It also has the physical health benefits of elongating your back, opening your hips, and helping with digestion[5].

To do Child’s Pose, rest your buttocks back on your feet, knees on the floor. Elongate your body over your knees with both arms extended or tucked back, with head and neck resting on the floor[6].

Had a bad day? Try Child's Pose.

     

    Do this pose as a gift to yourself. You are allowing yourself to heal, rest, get time for yourself, recover, and recharge. When you’ve had a bad day, it’s there waiting for you.

    5. Try Positive Self-Talk

    Engage in positive self-talk. This is essentially choosing your thoughts.

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    When you have a negative thought, such as “I can’t do this,” replace it consciously with the thought “I can do this.” Give yourself positive affirmations to help with this.

    Negative self-talk fits into four general categories: personalizing or blaming yourself, magnifying or only focusing on the negative, catastrophizing or expecting the worst to happen, and polarizing or only seeing back and white[7].

    When you stop blaming yourself for everything and start focusing on the positive, expecting things to work out, and seeing the areas of grey in life, you reverse these negative mindsets and engage in positive self-talk.

    When you speak words of kindness to yourself, your brain responds with a more positive attitude. That attitude will affect everything you do. It’s how you take care of yourself if you had a bad day.

    Check in with yourself to know when you are having negative self-talk. Are you seeing patterns? When did they start to become a problem? Are you able to turn these thoughts around?

    6. Use Coping Skills and Take a Break

    Use your coping skills. This means not letting your thoughts take control of yourself.

    You can distract yourself and escape a bit. Do things you love. You can exercise, listen to music, dance, volunteer or help someone, be in nature, or read a book.

    It isn’t about repression. It’s about redirection. You can’t stay in thoughts that are no longer working for you.

    Sometimes, it’s okay to get out of your own way. Give yourself a break from the things going on in your head. You can always come back to a problem later. This may even help you figure out the best course of action as sometimes stepping away is the only way to see the solution.

    If you had a bad day, you may not feel like addressing what went wrong. You may need a break, so take one.

    7. If a Bad Day Turns Into Bad Days

    “I believe depression is legitimate. But I also believe that if you don’t exercise, eat nutritious food, get sunlight, get enough sleep, consume positive material, surround yourself with support, then you aren’t giving yourself a fighting chance.” –Jim Carrey

    If you’ve been feeling out of control, depressed, or unstable for more than a few weeks, it’s time to call a mental health professional. This is not because you have failed in any way. It’s because you are human, and you simply need help.

    You may not be able to quickly rebound from a bad day, and that’s fine. Feel what you feel, but don’t let it consume you.

    When you talk to a professional, share the techniques that you have already tried here and whether they were helpful. They may tell you additional ideas or gain insights from your struggles of not being able to rebound from a series of bad days.

    If you’re having more than just a bad day, they will want to know. If you don’t have the answers, that’s okay, too. You just need to try these tools and figure out how you’re feeling. That’s all that’s required of you.

    Keep taking care of yourself. Any progress is progress, no matter how small. Give yourself a chance to get better by reaching out.

    Final Thoughts

    If you had a bad day, don’t let it stop you.

    Know this: It’s okay not to be okay. You have a right to feel what you feel. But there is something you can do about it.

    You can invest in yourself via self-care.

    You are not alone in this. Everyone has bad days from time to time. You just need to know that you are the positive things you tell yourself.

    More Things You Can Do If You Had a Bad Day

    Featured photo credit: Anthony Tran via unsplash.com

    Reference

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