You work too hard to be this broke!

Do you feel like you never have enough money? Or that you're living or close to living paycheck to paycheck? This is even more frustrating if you work every day of the week and pay your bills on time. So what's the problem? Why don't you ever have enough money in your account for things you really want or if an emergency pops up? Why is it that you have to use a credit card to cover these expenses and then end up making the minimum monthly payments (to avoid late fees. you'll still get interest charges unless you pay it off in full).

Turns out, it's the way we use our money. Or better yet, it's how we let our money use us. We're not telling our money what to do and if you let your money do what it wants, you'll never know where it goes. Then, by the time you realize, you'll be stuck eating cup noodles for the next couple of days until your next check comes in. When your stress finally hits you hard enough you'll tell yourself to take a break and order out or buy something just because it makes you happy for the time being. And that my friends is why you never have enough money. Don't feel bad about it because the majority of people have this issue. It's something you have to change for yourself. You have to be sick and tired enough of living this way and working too hard to be this broke.

Start by asking yourself this question. If you lost your job today, would you have 3-6 months of monthly expenses to tie you over until you found a new job? If the answer is no then I suggest following these steps to get on your way to financial stability:

1. Save $1,000 as soon as possible.

2. List out all your monthly bills

3. Create monthly meal plans and grocery lists for the week. stick to a spending limit as well.

4. Decide what check is best to pay what bill to avoid any late fees

5. List out your debts from smallest to largest

6. Look through your bank statements to see what unnecessary spending you can cut

7. Start by paying off your smallest debt while also continuing to save towards your 3-6 month emergency fund.

8. Set up a savings account and put your emergency fund into that (this should never be used for anything other than loss of job)

9. If your company has a 401k plan, enroll in it even if all you put in is 1%.

10. create separate savings for planned purchases or minor emergencies such as car parts, housing costs, etc. Keep this separate from your emergency fund.

11. lock away your credit cards and never touch them again. It's just a way to help build your credit score. Not free money. Try this: if you have to use a credit card, that means you can't afford it.

12. If you have kids, start savings for their future.

These steps will take time and I've piggy-backed off  Dave Ramsey's total money makeover steps quite a bit. But the key in this process is to always continue to save. Getting out of debt is not easy and becoming financially secure can be as much of a challenge. But the more you sacrifice, the greater the benefits you'll reap.


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