By Coach Fin
Have you ever looked at someone you consider to be financially successful and wondered how they got so lucky? Maybe they did get a lucky break. But it takes good habits to make the most of an opportunity — and keep reaping the benefits.
The good news is, there’s no mystery to becoming better at managing money. Financially successful people share some basic habits that you can adopt and apply to your finances right now. So…what do they do?
1. They spend less
People who are financially successful don’t just live within their means — they live a little below their means. That leaves room to build up emergency savings, weather hard times or to pay cash for big-ticket items. Many successful people don’t drive expensive cars, live in huge homes or have all the latest gadgets. These stealthy wealthy people choose frugal over flash to lay a secure financial foundation.
If you live paycheck to paycheck, it can be a hard cycle to break. But if you can find room in the budget to spend even just a little less each week, you can build up a financial cushion faster than you might think. This monthly budgeting calculator can help you see where your money goes and where there may be room to make changes.
2. They know when to say no — and when to say yes
Financially savvy people spend wisely in a few ways. They’re good at saying “no” to frivolous spending. When they do need something, they’ll clip a coupon or shop around for the best deal.
Sometimes spending wisely means saying “yes” to the right things, though. Investing in their own or a loved one’s education is one example. Investing in their physical and mental well-being is another. In a 2019 interview with Yahoo! Finance billionaire Warren Buffet said, “You get exactly one mind and one body in this world, and you can’t start taking care of it when you’re 50.”
3. They pay attention to their finances
People who are good with money know their assets and expenses. They pay attention to all their financial accounts and make financial plans.
Regardless of your bank balance, you can take a step in the right direction just by paying closer attention to your finances. List your assets. List your debts. Review your checking, savings and credit card account statements and online histories regularly. Make a debt management or investment plan. Set financial goals and review your plans periodically to adjust or stay on track.
4. They work hard
Financially savvy people know the value of a dollar — and the value of hard work. Whether they work in a company or own a small business, they know their dreams are more likely to come true with time, hard work and perseverance.
If you own or are thinking about starting a business, see how a solid business plan, business banking services and business credit can help fuel your success.
5. They know money isn’t everything
Some of those most famous magnates measure their success not by money, but by their relationships and happiness.
Sir Richard Branson’s advice is to “Be healthy. Be around your friends and family. Be there for someone, and let someone be there for you...”
Financial guru Suzi Orman says, “...happiness is not tied to how much money you have — how much you had in the past or hope to have in the future — but how you deal with what you have right now.”
Let Cinfed help you reach your goals
Boost your financial IQ with quick online courses from Cinfed Financial Education Center. Or make an appointment with a financial coach at your local Cinfed branch. Either way, we offer tools and resources to help you take control of your finances. Here’s what to expect if you visit us in person.