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9 Harmful Money Beliefs You Should Avoid To Get Richer

9 Harmful Money Beliefs You Should Avoid To Get Richer

Whether we know it or not, sometimes we hold onto beliefs that can actually inhibit our ability to make money. I’ve been guilty of some of the thought patterns explored below, and once I learned to face and negate them, greater income sources opened up to me.

See if you, too, harbor any of these bad money beliefs.

1. “Only certain people get rich.”

Maybe you grew up in a family that experienced a serious lack of funds and deep down believe it’ll always be that way, as if you somehow inherited “poorness” like a disease. Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s faulty to think that only people such as Oprah or Bill Gates were intended to be blessed with large sums of money. Even Ms. Winfrey was poor once, and if richness can happen to her, it can happen to just about anyone. Why not create a $1 million business this weekend?

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2. “There are no jobs out there.”

Buying into doom and gloom job reports give some people an excuse to give up their search for employment. As author James Altucher notes, however, millionaires learn to look for hidden opportunities and make their own entrepreneurial moves. Get inspired by this guy who left Google to sell brain pills.

3. “Giving income away will make me lose cash.”

It seems logical that if you have $500 and give away $100 to help a family in need, you’d only have $400 left over. Conversely, if you choose to keep that $500 and skip helping the people whose light may have pricked your heart, common math would tell you that you’d still have $500 for yourself. But life doesn’t work in logical ways; it works mysteriously and circuitously, whereby you may find that opening the door to being charitable comes back to you in fabulous ways.

4. “It’s a zero-sum game – to win, somebody has to lose.”

Simply because one person gains $1 million doesn’t mean that another person has lost out. Instead of viewing money as a big pie whereby those with larger slices are cheating those with slivers, Bill Gates once spoke of a concept called “the creation of wealth,” whereby companies like Microsoft generated funding that wouldn’t have been there otherwise. I view it almost as money being printed out of thin air instead of funds being stolen via some “the rich get richer and poor get poorer” idea.

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5. “Impoverished people are holier, less selfish, etc.”

Yes, we’ve had great examples of folks who’ve walked this Earth that intentionally lived in poverty and focused more on non-material attributes. But that doesn’t mean doing so makes us saints. You can be just as effective by having money and using it in altruistic ways to help others, instead of taking a vow of poverty if your life isn’t meant to duplicate that direction.

6. “Wealthy people are jerks.”

Some rich people are full of themselves. Some rich people are kind and caring. Certain disadvantaged members of the public are lovely, whilst others are cruel. Money in and of itself is merely a tool. Having a lot of it only magnifies a person’s true character. Great wealth doesn’t create character.

7. “I’ll hit the lottery one day.”

Out of all the major lessons I remember from the popular book titled The Millionaire Next Door, the one that sticks out is that millionaires don’t always look like the flashy Rolls Royce driving folks we see in the movies. That’s because some of them plod away at doing all the non-glamorous things it can take to get rich: driving older cars, living beneath our means, etc.

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As long as we’re solely waiting for some sweet Powerball-winning day to make us rich, it kind of takes the onus off of getting there the hard way. Like one stockbroker told me, “Continue on with your get-rich-quick plan, and in the meantime, save money as well.”

8. “I’d better lower my prices/salary in order to gain sales/clients.”

If you’re trying to get rich through your business, there could be times when you’re tempted to cut your hourly rate or the prices of your products or services in order to make ends meet. This could be a great business move – after all, the marketing term “loss leader” wasn’t invented for nothing.

However, if you’re constantly undercutting your own value just because you’re afraid of losing clients or due to fears that what you bring to the table is not good enough to compete with others, it could be more symptomatic of deeper issues.

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A graphic artist who provides high-quality image editing might decide that her level of expertise and skills are worth $50 per hour. If clients looking for a cheap deal try to talk her down to $10 per  hour and she accepts, the artist may discover that she’s effectively lowered her annual salary below the poverty level. Instead of kowtowing to cheap clients out of anxiety, it would be better to politely decline and move on to others that are more than willing to pay higher rates for quality work.

9. “My business has to be shady to make money.”

The talk of the Internet recently was about a New York-area hotel that had the gall to charge people $500 for any negative reviews posted about them on sites like Yelp. Setting aside the fact that the practice might actually be illegal, most readers agreed that instead of threatening guests with fines for negative reviews, the hotel should actually do their best to provide positive customer experiences and gain great reviews naturally.

Amazon is king when it comes to “the customer is always right” theory. They even allow consumers to return Kindle books within seven days if they don’t like them – one of the many ways the online retailing giant has won the trust of goo-gobs of people that love to fork over their credit and debit card numbers to “The Everything Store,” as goes their motto.

Businesses and leaders who adopt the same thought-process – that is, harboring quality customer relationship management training, honesty and good ethics – are the ones that stand a greater chance of making their owners and employees rich. Those firms and folks that believe they must adhere to shady, confusing practices that rely on trickery to make a lot of money are the ones that will burn out like a shooting star streaking across the night sky.

Featured photo credit: Dollars in Wallet via static2.bigstockphoto.com

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Last Updated on January 2, 2019

How Personal Finance Software Helps You Get More Out of Your Money

How Personal Finance Software Helps You Get More Out of Your Money

Do you know what mental health experts point to as the biggest cause of stress in the United States today? If you said “money,” then ding, ding, we have a winner!

Three out of four adults today report feeling stressed out about money at least part of the time. People are either worried about not having enough money or whether they’re putting the money they do have to use in the best possible way.

Your money is either in charge of you or you’re in charge of it, there’s no middle ground. Using some type of personal finance software can help alleviate some of that money stress and better allow you to manage your money effectively. Without it, you may just be setting yourself up for constant financial worry. Life is already tough enough and there’s no need to make it more difficult by simply hoping your money issues will all work out in your favor. Hint: they won’t.

This guide will help you to understand how personal finance software can better assist with both accomplishing long term financial goals and managing day-to-day aspects of life.

Whether it’s tracking the savings plan for your child’s college fund or making sure you won’t be in the red with the month’s grocery budget, personal finance software keeps all this information in one convenient place.

What Exactly is Personal Finance Software?

Think of it like the dashboard in your car. You have a speedometer to tell you how fast you’re going, an odometer to tell you how far you’ve traveled, and then other gauges to tell you things like how much gas is in the tank and your engine temperature. Personal finance software is essentially the same thing for your money.

When you install this software on your computer, tablet, or smartphone, it helps to track your money — how much is going in, how much is going out, and its growth. Most personal finance software programs will display your budget, spending, investments, bills, savings accounts, and even retirement plans, levels of debt, and credit score.

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How It Leads to Financial Improvement

It shouldn’t come as a surprise, but people who regularly monitor their finances end up wealthier than those who don’t. When you were a kid, keeping track of all of your money in a porcelain piggy bank was pretty easy. As we get older, though, our money becomes spread out across things like car payments, mortgages, retirement funds, taxes, and other investments and debts. All of these things make keeping track of our money a lot more complicated.

Some types of personal finance software can help make things a little less complicated, setting you up to meet financial goals and taking away some of the stress associated with money.

Even if you already have a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) some type of personal finance software can be of great benefit. Whereas CFPs focus on the big picture of your money, they don’t handle the day-to-day aspects that determine your overall financial health.

It’s also not nearly as complicated as you might think and can take out a lot of the tedium that comes with doing everything on an Excel spreadsheet or with a pad and pencil.

Types of Personal Finance Software

When it comes to personal finance software, it generally fits into two categories: tax preparation and money management.

Tax preparation software such as Turbo Tax and H&R Block’s software can help with everything from filing income taxes to IRS rules and regulations and even estate plans. Plus, there’s the benefit of filing online and getting your refund check a lot faster than if you were to mail off your forms after waiting in line at the post office.

For the purpose of this article, however, will be focusing more on the personal finance software that aids with money management.

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Money management personal finance software will help you to see the health of your cash flow, pay down debt, forecast for expenses and savings, track investments, pay bills, and do a host of other things that 30 years ago would have practically required a team of accountants.

When to Use Personal Finance Software

So far we’ve gone over what exactly personal finance software is and how it can be a benefit to your money. The next logical step in this whole equation is determining when it should be used and how is the best way to go about getting started using it.

Below are four of the most common and practical ways to use personal finance software. If all or any of these apply to you and your money, then downloading some type of personal finance software is going to be a smart move.

1. You Have Multiple Accounts

There’s a good chance that when it comes to your money, it’s in more than one place. Sure, you probably have a checking account, but you may also have a savings account, money market account, and retirement accounts such as an IRA or 401k.

If you’re like the average American, you probably have two to three credit cards as well. Fifty percent of Americans also don’t have loyalty to just one bank and spread their money across multiple banks.

Rather than spending hours typing in every detail of every account you have into a spreadsheet, many programs allow you to easily import your account information. This will help to eliminate any mistakes and give you a bird’s eye view of everything at once.

2. You Want to Automate Some or All of Your Payments

Please don’t say that you’re still writing out paper checks and dropping each bill in the mailbox. While it’s noble that you’re doing your part to keep postal workers employed, we’re 18 years into the 21st century and you can literally pay every bill online now.

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There’s no need to log into every account you have and type in your routing number either.

With personal finance software you can schedule automatic payments and transfers between all of your imported accounts. Automatic transfers will help to make sure you have the necessary funds in the right account to ensure all bills are paid on the appropriate date. Late fees are annoying and do nothing but cost you money. It’s time that you said goodbye to them once and for all.

3. You Need to Streamline Your Budget

Perhaps the best feature of personal finance software is that it allows you track everything going in and out of your virtual wallet.

Nearly every brand of personal finance software out there has easy-to-read graphs and charts that allow you track every cent you spend or earn, should you choose. You might be pretty amazed when you see just how much you spent on eating out last month or if you splurged a little more than you should have on Christmas gifts last year.

Every successful business on the planet has a budget and using personal finance software can help you trim the fat on your spending in ways that affect your everyday life.

4. You Have Specific Goals to Meet

Maybe it’s paying off debt or saving for up something like a European vacation. Whatever your financial goal is, whether it’s long-term or short-term, personal finance software programs are one of the savviest ways to go about reaching those goals.

You can do everything from set spending alerts to notify you when you’re over budget to automating what percentage of your paycheck goes to things like retirement investments. The personal finance software that you choose should show you exactly how close you are to hitting those goals at any given time.

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How to Get Started

From AceMoney to Mint and Quicken, there ’s no shortage of personal finance software apps out there. Many of these programs are free to download and will allow you to pay bills, invest, monitor your net worth and credit profile, and even get a loan with the swipe of a finger.

Other programs may only offer you limited services and will require a one-time fee or subscription to unlock all that they offer. These fees can often vary from as little as two dollars to 50 bucks a month.

It’s best to start off with the free version and then gauge whether you’re able to accomplish everything you’d like or if it’s worth exploring one of the paid options. Often times the subscription programs come with assistance from financial planning and investment experts — so that can be a real benefit.

When deciding which personal finance software program to use, it’s also important to look at how many accounts you wish to monitor. Certain programs limit the number of accounts you can add. Be sure that if you have checking, credit card, and investment accounts to monitor, that you choose a service that can monitor them all.

Finally, when looking around for the right personal finance software that meets your needs, make sure that you’re comfortable with the program’s interface. It shouldn’t be expected that you recognize every single feature instantly, but if the features don’t seem readable and manageable to you, then you’re not as likely to use it and get the full benefits.

Final Thoughts

Personal finance software can go a long way in helping you to take control of your money and meeting your financial goals. It’s important to note, however, that some focus more on budgeting and expense tracking while others prioritize investing portfolios and income taxes. Explore several different programs and read reviews to find the one that’s right for you.

In this day and age, managing one’s personal finances in a secure manner that allows the user to have a real-time visual representation of their money is easier than ever before. With the numerous applications that are out there — both free and subscription-based — there’s no reason that every person can’t take control of their money and ensure they’re making smart money moves.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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