About Donell Edwards: Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media and is also founder and publisher of The College World Reporter (CWR) magazine and CWR World News & Information Service. He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.
Know Your Money
Monday – March 31, 2014
Monthly Checkup: Where Are You?
By Donell Edwards
Good Monday everyone. I hope you had a fantastic and money-wise weekend.
I had the privilege over the weekend to make the acquaintance of an incredibly dynamic young lady who is a phenomenal leader in this crusade to help educate people about personal finance. Her name is Samirian Hill, who is known as The MoneyWise Teacher, and who is President and founder of BudgetWise Financial Solutions, LLC. We have added her website to our Resources page and the link to her website is http://www.budgetwisefinancial.com/.
We strongly encourage you to visit Ms. Hill’s website which has wonderful information that will help anyone interested in gaining knowledge about managing personal finances. One of our goals with this blog is to provide readers with information about resources and to introduce to readers outstanding people like Ms. Hill who have the professional training and skills to help you. Although we hope that you are benefiting from the Know Your Money Blog, your education in personal money management is your responsibility, and you should seek out a variety of sources to ensure that you get a diverse education in personal finance.
Hopefully you had a money-wise weekend, and a successful first month on our journey together to achieve your goals with your personal finance. Yes, today concludes our first month. So, this should be a time for you to celebrate your success.
Congratulations on your successful first month. Even if you did not achieve your goals, you are still successful if you have been reading this blog and have made the effort to apply what you have learned. So congratulations and keep reading and keep working toward your goals.
Now, for our first monthly checkup.
Checkpoint 1 – Spending: We began with monitoring spending and have focused on this particular aspect of personal money management because of its importance. So, have you selected and used some method to record and monitor your spending? Are you recording everything every day? Are you taking time at least weekly to review and analyze your spending?
Checkpoint 2 – Using Spending Resources: – Are you using spending tools to monitor your spending? If you have not begun recording your spending, or if you just started reading this blog, we suggest that you go to our first two blogs about monitoring spending, and budgeting and spending resources. The budgeting and spending resources provides information about several methods of recording spending and tools to assist with keeping a record of all spending. Again, maintaining a record of all spending is paramount in laying the foundation to move forward in working to improve personal money management. So, how are you doing?
Checkpoint 3 – Overcoming Denial: – Some have a serious denial syndrome about needing help with their personal finances. We discussed this in our March 7, 2014 post and cited several specific types of denial, although these are just a few of the many that exist, The Survivor, The Cheater, and The Faker. A major accomplishment is acknowledging that one has a problem, so do you still have any issues with denial if you have a problem with compulsive, wasteful spending, and poor money management habits, or have you made progress in overcoming the denial?
Checkpoint 4 – Change: Guest contributor Felicia M. Johnson provided some very insightful information on change in our March 12, 2014 post. As we have mentioned repeatedly and will continue to do so, this is a process and involves changing, sometimes life-long habits and behavior, that are detrimental to personal money management. So how are you adapting? Have you been willing to make necessary changes in your mode of operation when it has become evident to you that change is in order?
Checkpoint 5 – Time for Meditation: Since this process requires significant adjustments and behavioral changes, it is very good to take some time at least several times a week for financial meditation. Go some place where it is quiet and you can think about where you are financially, what your financial goals are, and what steps you are taking to achieve success. Make sure you are allowing time for financial meditation and reflection.
Checkpoint 6 – Confessions: In our March 14, 2014 post I shared with you my own confessions as a spendaholic at one point in my life. I hope my confessions were helpful to you. However, it is good for you to carefully and objectively make your own confessions. Perhaps you can do this during one of your financial meditation periods. This is just to see if you have, or at one time had, any of the characteristics of a spendaholic, and what you have done or need to do about this.
Checkpoint 7 – Credit Card Addiction: If you have been addicted to credit cards, have you made progress in putting the credit cards away and where possible restricting your purchases to only what your budget allows you to pay for? This is a difficult one and will take time, but the first step is to begin.
Checkpoint 8 – Choices: We discussed the importance of making better choices in our blog of March 20, 2014. Making better choices requires resisting temptation, exercising self-control, willpower, etc. It is not easy, but you can do it. Just keep taking a step at a time in the process and you will be successful. All of these checkpoints are just reminders.
Checkpoint 9 – The Killer: Weekend Spending: One of the most difficult areas to attack in taking control of spending is the weekend. It is very, very easy to fall into the trap of thinking that enjoying the weekend must involve doing things that require spending. We offered alternatives in our weekend spending post of March 21, 2014. So, how are you doing? Are you beginning to get the weekends under control?
Checkpoint 10 – The Family and Spending: Last week we devoted the entire week on how the family influences spending. It will be very difficult to achieve success in making progress in managing personal finances if you have a family, if the entire family is not involved and supportive. That is why we devoted an entire week to emphasize the role of the family in influencing spending. Have you considered what was discussed? Have you had a family financial consultation with your family? If not, when are you going to do it? This is urgent in making advancement in the process to improve personal management.
I hope these 10 checkpoints will be helpful to you in reviewing the progress that you have made, and in reinforcing the point that this is a process that requires change and commitment. As you go through this process you will learn to replace bad spending habits with good ones, how to change your attitude toward money and spending, and you will ultimately enjoy having success in knowing that you are managing your money wisely.
You can succeed, and you will. To help you envision your own success I have provided three articles featuring people who have succeed in one of the major steps that we will be tackling later on in this process, and that is getting rid of debt. These are all short reads and I encourage you to read each of them.
Make tomorrow, April 1 a day of financial meditation. No, this is not an April fools’ joke. This is serious business.
The rest of this week we will devote to taxes and your money.
Enjoy the day, congratulations again on your success. By the way, I have provided a little celebration music that I hope you enjoy at the end of this post.
Are You A Spendaholic? Send Us Your Confessions:
If you would like to share with our readers how “bad” spending habits have affected you, anonymously or otherwise, for our upcoming special, “Confessions Of Spendaholics,” please send your experience to email@example.com.
Suggested Reading: Paying Off Your Debt – You CAN Do It!
How These Women Met Their Savings Goals
Paying Off Debt: A Year Into Our Journey
Getting Out Of Debt: A Staff Writer’s Story
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