By Jane Young
Effectively managing and controlling your finances is greatly influenced by your priorities. We all have a limited amount of time and money. The way in which we utilize our time and money impacts our ability to achieve financial success.
A key element of financial management is developing and following a budget. The thought of developing a budget conjures up negative feelings in many people. Some view a budget as inflexible, restrictive and limiting. Rather than seeing a budget as something that limits your freedom, think of it as a positive tool to achieve your goals. A budget encourages you to spend in accordance with your priorities. Rather than limiting your freedom, it gives you the freedom to control your finances based on priorities you set for yourself.
By creating a budget, you can establish a spending and saving plan that balances your priorities for the present and the future. Your budget should include necessary expenses as well as discretionary expenses that will bring you joy and increase the quality of your life. Rather than viewing a budget as a ball and chain, slowing you down, think of it as an opportunity to create a roadmap for your life – based on priorities that you establish.
Your financial success is also dependent on how you prioritize your time. It’s important to devote time to enhance your career and increase your earning potential. This includes working effectively in your current position and taking time to improve your skills and education to progress in your career. This can also create opportunities to transition to a new career with more satisfaction and improved earning potential. Most individuals destined for financial success never stop learning.
Another characteristic of financially successful people is prioritizing time to work on their finances. Unfortunately, data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2019, found that only 3% of American’s spend time on their finances in a typical day. They also discovered that American’s are 30 times more likely to spend time watching television than working on their finances. Clearly, placing a higher priority on managing, monitoring, planning and learning about finances leads to greater financial security. Most people want to be financially prepared but are unwilling to devote the time needed to attain financial wellness.Finally, prioritizing time to improve and maintain your physical and mental health is important to long-term financial security. Taking the time to get enough sleep, eat well, exercise, socialize and relax will result in more energy, creativity and productivity. A healthy lifestyle will lead to a more positive attitude and improved relationships. If you are performing at your peak and people enjoy your company, you will be more successful in your career and have more opportunities. You will also have greater motivation and enthusiasm to set goals, establish a budget, manage your finances and achieve financial success.