As January comes to an end, I’m reminded that many people are struggling with depression and anxiety due to overwhelming financial problems. You won't be alone! Consumer counseling agencies see a 25 percent increase in the number of people seeking help in January and February, and most of that traffic is propelled to their doors by holiday bills that haunt consumers like the ghost of Christmas past. Gaining control of our spending and finances is a way to ensure you can remain focused and passionate during our strengthening journey.
A strong mind, body and soul comes from limiting the amount of stress we intake. Financial stress can be one of the most powerful and can keep us down and feeling helpless. Today my hope is to give you some simple ways to start gaining control of your finances.
1. INVENTORY: Take an inventory of debt and income
2. PLAN: Make a plan to allocate any extra income you have each month and pay it toward your debt. If you are short income, and can't pay all your expenses, brainstorm on ways to earn extra money or ways to cut expenses.
3. ACCOUNTABILITY: Find someone to hold you accountable. I would love to be your accountability partner. Email me at email@example.com.
5. FOCUS: Stay laser focused on the end goal!
One big piece of advice I can give is to take baby steps. Be very specific about your goals and work diligently at achieving your goals. Any small amount that you can pay extra toward your debt will help pay it down faster. Once you get your debt under control, make behavioral changes in your spending habits so you don't have to experience these feelings of anxiety. Start saving for next year!
Quick testimony... my husband and I saved two years to upgrade the siding and windows on our home. We got quotes to determine the price. We looked at our budget to determine how much we could save each month. We allocated any extra money that came in toward the project and cut out some expenses on things we didn't need. Because of the focus and agreement we both had to meet our goal, we were able to pay cash for this major project. It was an amazing experience and accomplishment!
Be encouraged, get organized and get your mind focused on the end goal. Let me be your accountability partner or find someone else you trust. Don't forget... you must be on the same page as your spouse or it will be very difficult to achieve financial goals.
If you want to learn more on how to manage your finances, you can purchase this simple budget book to help you: Whole Armor Restoration, Guide to Financial Wellness. If you would like me to come speak to your church body or offer assistance with your churches financial stewardship program, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
INVENTORY. PLAN. ACCOUNTABILITY. FOCUS