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The Conversation Everyone Avoids, That Almost Everyone Should Have

It’s Financial Literacy Month.  Do You Know Your Money?

 

Know Your Money
Tuesday – April 5, 2017

The Conversation Everyone Avoids, That Almost Everyone Should Have
By Donell Edwards  

 

According to research conducted by ValuePenguin, an organization that provides objective analysis to help consumers, 38% of American households carry month-to-month credit card debt. The ValuePenguin study also discovered that “Households with the lowest net worth (zero or negative) hold an average of $10,308 in credit card debt.” ( Sources: U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Federal Reserve, 2013 Survey of Consumer Finances)

A 2016 GoBankingRates.com survey found that 69% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings, while 34% say they have no savings at all. The survey cites two factors as major contributors to this problem: (1.) “One of the big reasons people aren’t saving more is likely because they are living beyond their means.” And (2.) “… credit cards and other cashless payment options such as Apple Pay have made it even easier to spend.”

Another very enlightening fact was revealed in a 2013 Gallup Poll, which found that “only 32% of American households were sticking to a monthly budget.” Which means that 68% of the population either does not have a budget or fails to stick to a monthly budget.

Alarming statistics like these demonstrate a need for personal finance management skills that many Americans are missing.

 

 

 

Personal finance management affects a variety of areas including a person’s income, family security, standard of living, and savings. Financial planning helps people determine both short and long-term goals in order to create a balanced plan to meet those goals.

As a result of my own personal experience with money management, what I have learned from those experiences, conversations with others knowledgeable about this subject, and research that I have conducted, it has become obvious to me that many people need help with personal money management. That is why I founded this blog, Know Your Money Global (KYM), in 2013 to promote financial literacy and encourage effective money management.

This blog, KnowYourMoneyGlobal.net, was designed to promote financial literacy, provide valuable news and information about personal money management, personal finance, credit, debt management, tax savings and wealth building. The blog encourages readers to create their own dynamic personal cash economy, rather than using the credit-driven economy that so many are accustomed to.

We are dedicated to fostering the concept of a community of individuals, groups and organizations that share our mission of improving financial literacy and effective money management. Because of this, our Know Your Money Global Blog features posts that combine personal experiences with the expertise of industry professionals in order to give readers well-rounded information to take away.

Additionally, we provide periodic check-ups so that readers may evaluate their progress and identify areas where they may need to focus more attention. We also provide information about valuable tools and resources that readers may use in their effort to maintain or improve their money management skills.

Beginning Monday – April 17, 2017, Know Your Money Global will introduce the free 13 week KYM Money Success Strategies Institute. The Institute will provide step-by-step instructions on how to improve money management skills, how to use credit wisely, how to get out of debt, and how to build wealth.

If improving your personal money management skills is important to you, register today for our KYM Money Success Strategies Institute, or if someone you care about needs this information, encourage them to register. To register, go to our Sign-Up Form tab and provide the required information.

There is no better time to start making knowing your money your way of life than now, during Financial Literacy Month.  The KYM Money Success Strategies Institute begins Monday – April 17th.  So sign up right now!

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  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 comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Donell Edwards
Publisher, Writer, Speaker

About Donell Edwards:  Donell Edwards is President of CWR Media Group which includes CWR World News Talk Radio Show and CWR World News & Information Service, a daily online newspaper.  He is also a professional speaker, freelance writer, and entrepreneur.  

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more information about personal money management.

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Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2017 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

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Saving Is Not Optional!

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout 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.  To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:

Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

Thought for Today:  The habit of saving is itself an education. It fosters every virtue, teaches self-denial, cultivates the sense of order, trains to forethought, and so broadens the mind. – Thornton T. Munger, American Scientist (1883 – 1975)

Know Your Money
Tuesday – December 6, 2016

Saving Is Not Optional!
By Donell Edwards  

 

There are many attitudes and philosophies about saving, but there is one factor that cannot be ignored in achieving financial security, and that factor is that saving is not optional.

Emphasis On Saving

Over the years in this blog we have discussed saving numerous times because of its importance.  In fact we featured a special series on saving in May of 2014.  The series included:  Getting Started – Do You Have What It Takes? published on May 12, 2014.  The second post in the series was Debt Management, Creating Income Streams, Savings, which was published on May 13, 2014.  The last post in the series was Making The Most Of your Savings published on May 16, 2014.

In addition to the special savings series we also published Knowing Your Personal Finances: Are You Ready to Save?, Starting An Emergency Fund, and Time To Change Your Thinking About Saving.

 

Saving Is Not Optional!

                                   Saving Is Not Optional!

 

Why Saving Is Not Optional

We are revisiting this topic today in view of a survey conducted by GoBankingRates in January 2016 which found that 1 in 3 Americans has $O (none, zilch, nada)  saved for retirement, 42 percent of Millennials indicated they have no retirement savings, and about 75% of Americans over 40 are behind on saving for retirement.

This follows a pattern that has existed now for over a decade, and continues to be a major issue in achieving financial health.  If any of those statistics apply to you individually you should be gravely concerned.  However, as we have also pointed out in this blog many times, a person must first have the circumstances to be able to save.  I speak from personal experience and know for a fact that some people really know they should save and want to, but just can’t because of their current circumstances.

What If You Just Can’t Save?

So, if you are reading this and are thinking “I know I need to save, but I just can’t right now because it takes everything I have to just get by, and most of the time there is not enough to take care of my living expenses.”  You have some challenges, and your goal should be to continue to work to change your circumstances so that you can save by taking on additional work if you are not already doing that, or by working overtime if it is available.  Also, by carefully examining your budget and eliminating everything except essentials, real essentials, such as shelter, food, utilities, and healthcare. Implement a spending moratorium, and don’t make any new purchases until you work yourself out of the situation that you are in.  The point is, don’t accept your current situation as permanent, make whatever changes and sacrifices you need to make to get your financial house in order, and once it is in order, continue to maintain a strong financial foundation.  The blessing of being in a less than favorable financial situation is that it forces you to make positive adjustments that will benefit you the rest of your life, if you are willing to work to overcome all of the problems holding you back financially.

Your Attitude Matters

On the other hand, if you have the means to save but just don’t see the advantage, consider what will happen to you and if you have a family, what will happen to your family if you do not have funds set aside for emergencies.  These could come in the form of the loss of employment, which is very possible in today’s economy.  Or it may be the result of you or a family member being the victim of a long-term health problem or disease.  Or perhaps it may be the result of an environmental catastrophe such as a flood, tornado, or hurricane.  If you do not have funds set aside for these things, how will they impact your finances?

Even if you have insurance to help with some of these issues, in most instances you are still exposing yourself to substantial financial loss.  That is why setting aside emergency funds is so very important to financial stability.

What You Can Do Now:  Pay Off Your Debt

The first thing we suggest is that you pay off all outstanding debt, with the understanding that this probably will be a long-term goal.  As you pay off a debt,  take the money you were using to pay that debt and apply it to another debt, and continue this process until all of your debt is eliminated.  The trick is not to incur any additional debt while you are doing this.

What You Can Do Now:  Control Your Spending

Learn how to identify and eliminate wasteful spending.  Also, improve your shopping skills and learn how to plan your shopping and look for bargains and save on grocery, clothing, and other items or services you purchase.  Become a coupon clipper and use coupons to help with your savings on your purchases.  Consider using SmartPhone apps that can help you save if you own a SmartPhone like Ibotta,  SnipSnapSavingStar and Coupon Sherpa.  Always look for ways to save on purchase and control your spending so that you can save for the unexpected, and eventually to build wealth.  Make sacrifices willingly and do not give in to impulse buying.  Make credit card payments early or on time and pay more than the minimum required to improve your credit rating, which results in a higher credit score and lower interest rates, and which will help you avoid late charges.

As we have mentioned previously in this post in order to save there must be funds to save.  Those funds should come from effectively managing the income that you have, implementing and closely following your budget, and paying down your debt.  A key factor in your success will be how well you learn to control your spending.  Without being redundant but to emphasize, be aware that controlling spending takes sacrifice, willpower, determination, and a willingness to change.  Make the commitment to yourself to do these things.  If you happen to receive income occasionally from other sources, don’t go on a spending spree and waste it all, but use some of that money for your savings.  You should develop a savings conscious mentality with any money that you receive.

What You Can Do Now: Earn More On Your Current Job Or In Your Career 

Here’s how:

  • Prepare yourself for success, a job promotion or raise by becoming an avid reader.  Read, read, read.  Read trade magazines and learn about what is going on in your industry.  Be a resource for your supervisor and management team.  Be the person that becomes known as the guru in your office.  Study the company’s internal reports, newsletters, and any other information that will educate you about the company’s goals, objectives, competition, projections, etc.
  • Attend seminars related to your current position and further educate yourself or learn new skills that can be utilized in your current position or to help you to advance your career.
  • Become close friends with your human resources manager.  Find out what options you have for career advancement and what you need to do to position yourself for success in pursuing those positions.
  • Be open to the idea of returning to college to get additional education.
  • If overtime is available, be willing to work overtime to increase your income.

What You Can Do Now:  Create New Income Streams

You can create a new income stream by starting a home based business.  The power of a home based business is revealed in this comment from the U.S. Small Business Administration website:  “What do Apple Computer, Hershey’s, Mary Kay Cosmetics, and the Ford Motor Company have in common? These well-known corporations all started out as home-based businesses. In fact, more than half of all U.S. businesses are based out of an owner’s home.”

In addition to having an additional income stream from starting a home based business, there are some very good tax advantages as well.  Obviously, everyone does not have the desire or the drive to have a home based business.  But if you have the entrepreneurial spirit, you are well organized and are good at time management, and you are willing to learn, having a home based business can provide you with many rewards.

How To Save

If you are currently in a position financially to start saving but it is something you just have not done and would like to start but need some ideas on how to get started, here is a great idea.

I was listening to the radio a few months ago and heard about a fantastic way for people who have very little money to use a portion of their income to save $,378 within a year.  Then this process may be repeated over and over again, or modified to increase the amounts and save more.  The idea is to get into the habit of saving, to convince yourself that you can save.

I did some research after hearing about this saving method and discovered an outstanding blogger, Lisa Bedford, and her blog, The Survival Mom – http://thesurvivalmom.com/.  Lisa shared information on her blog about this interesting saving method known as the 52 Week Challenge.  If you are looking for a place to start, this may be just what you need.

Where To Save

One of your concerns, justifiably so,  may be where to save your money, since the interest rates at most banks is so very low it is almost not worth even putting money into them.  The question then is where is the best place for savers to save their money?

In researching this question and discussing it with some of the people in the finance industry, I discovered that credit unions generally pay more interest than banks.  In May 2014 GoBankingRates.com published an article, Highest Savings Account Rate Is 40X the National Average, which included a comparison chart that shows the average savings account rates over the previous year for banks and credit unions and the national average, and the change from 2013 to 2014.  The article also lists the 10 best savings accounts based on data from the GoBankingRates database.  So, credit unions are a good choice.

For those in the military, United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a good option.  This company provides banking, investing, and insurance services to people who serve or have served in the military and their families.

Another option is to purchase Certificates of Deposit (CDs) if you are prepared to leave the money in the account for at least 6 to 12 months.  Since you should be saving for the purpose of creating an emergency fund or to accumulate enough money to invest, leaving the money in the account for up to a year should not be a problem.  In some cases the interest on CDs may be higher than the interest in banks.

So, do your own research, and look for the best deal.  Also, make sure to read the fine print because there may be penalties for making more withdrawals than allowed, for failing to meet the minimum balance requirement, and there could be other hidden penalties or fees.

A Word For Millennials and Gen-X

A word especially for our young readers, the Millennials and gen-Xers.  The statistics referenced earlier in this post indicate that Millennials and Gen-Xers are among the highest percentage of Americans who have little or no savings.  This may be interpreted as either a lack of appreciation for the importance of saving, or a lack of information and understanding about the importance of saving.  I can remember when I was in my twenties I did not really appreciate the importance of saving.  I knew that it was a good thing if I did, but even with my parents encouraging me and repeatedly trying to help me appreciate how important it was to save, I still viewed it as something optional that I could do later.  At that age, I felt that I was “bulletproof,” “untouchable,” that I could conquer the world on my own terms and ignore all of the wisdom that had been made available to me.  I learned later in life how very wrong I was.  Thankfully, I learned before it was too late, but it was still very, very, very costly to me.

If you are a young person and you are reading this, 18-35 years of age, please take some time to think about how you manage your money.  Think about your future.  Think about all of the things in life that you have not prepared for financially in the event you lose your current income.  Will you be able to have a place to live, or will you be forced to move back home with your parents?  Will you be able to keep your vehicle, or will you  be forced to lose it?  Will you be able to continue to take care of your family if you have one?  What will happen to your spouse and children?  These are some very important potentially life changing scenarios that should be given every consideration.

If you are a mature reader and you know a young person that needs this information, perhaps your own child, or a relative or colleague or business associate, recommend this blog post to them or send it to them.

We also encourage every reader who feels the need for assistance with their own money management skills, to help get out of debt, control spending, and begin saving, to sign-up for our 13 week KYM Money Success Strategies Institute, which starts on Monday – January 9, 2017.  This program will provide step-by-step instructions on how to improve money management skills, use credit wisely, get out of debt, and build wealth, featuring daily video support during the first four weeks.

We will also be available to help with any questions enrollees may have.  So, make this your New Year’s Resolution, to enroll in our KYM Money Success Strategies Institute.  To enroll, just click here.  And remember we start Monday – January 9, 2017.  SIGN UP NOW!

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?  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 comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more information about personal money management.

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Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial planner. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2016 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Financial Literacy Month 2015: Commentary

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout 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
Thursday – April 30, 2015

Financial Literacy Month 2015
Commentary
By Donell Edwards

Last year I commented on an article that appeared in the Chicago Tribune regarding the fallacy of Financial Literacy Month.  In this article, the writer, Ms. Jill Schlesinger, who describes herself as a former member of the financial planning and money management industry cites her opinions on why the idea of financial literacy education is a fallacy.  She also references a book,“Pound Foolish,” written by Helain Olen, and includes in her article comments from a recent interview with Ms. Olen. 

 

Group of Young People at a Party Sitting on a Couch with Champagne

 

The following is my commentary of Ms. Schlesinger’s article.

Ms. Schlesinger states that when she left the “financial planning and money management business and became a financial journalist, I had hopes that with a clear, easy-to-understand message, I could somehow help inform the masses. While that may be true, my view of financial literacy changed dramatically after I read Helaine Olen’s fantastic book, “Pound Foolish.”

You can get an overview of the book Ms. Schlesinger references through the links above or here.  While Ms. Olen’s book is a behind-the-scenes look into the finance industry from the perspective of a former insider, it is also an attack on the industry and the commercial system.  It must be acknowledged that much of what Ms. Olen says may be true, the financial planning and money management industry may be corrupt, however, her conclusions in regard to the benefits of financial literacy are inaccurate.

Both Ms. Olen and Ms. Schlesinger make the assumption that most efforts to inform and educate the masses about financial literacy and money management are funded, coordinated, and influenced by greedy banks and financial institutions.  Ms. Olen states regarding financial literacy, “it takes an incredibly complex and complicated financial services world, and thrusts all responsibility for navigating it safely on the customer. It presumes that the reason we can’t save is that we lack the skills, and doesn’t even deign to acknowledge the fact that the cost of health, education and housing has skyrocketed as our salaries have stagnated and fallen.”

I agree totally with Ms. Olen’s comment about the spiraling cost of health, education and housing, while  salaries remain stagnant or decrease as factors that make it difficult for individuals to save.  However, this alone does not mean that financial literacy does not help and is not necessary.  It is obvious from Ms. Olsen’s comments that the “financial services world” is “incredibly complex and complicated” that she is talking about investments, stocks, bonds, etc., and not the normal household and personal money management of the average person.  Admittedly for some balancing a checking account or developing a budget may be challenging, but it is not “incredibly complex and complicated.”

Most of the financial literacy programs are designed to work with people on a very basic level in learning how to control spending, prepare and live by a practical and realistic budget, and learn how to save and hopefully eventually invest.  That is not rocket science, but people do need help, they need education. And for those who are really serious and implement what they are learning, it really does work.

The article further states, “But here’s the eye-opener: data indicate that financial literacy simply does not work. Despite millions being spent on financial education projects, people are not that much wiser about the subject. Olen says, ‘Students who study the subject seem to know no more or less than those who do not.’ And plenty of financially savvy people do dopey things with their money all the time.”

Again, to whom is Ms. Olen referring?  Based on those conclusions I guess we should close our schools because students from secondary schools and colleges also do things that are not very smart.  But is this because education did not benefit them, or because of personal choices they made?  Also, Ms. Olen makes all of these comments without providing one single source or citing any study or referencing any data that supports her opinion.

The article further states, “That it doesn’t work should not be surprising, because Olen notes that much of the financial literacy effort is financed by big financial institutions, whose motives may be suspect. Many of these big companies promote their public education projects, while at the same time, continue to sell murky and complicated products.”

OK!  Now we begin to see what is really the driving force behind Ms. Olen’s opinions.  She apparently has issues with the financial planning and money management industry.  No doubt she has seen some things during her career that really disturbed her.  However, that is no reason to attempt to discredit sound programs designed to help educate people about personal money management so that they may be able to improve their lives.

By the way, here are just a few independent organizations and agencies that promote Financial Literacy Month that have nothing to do with the industry:

 

The Financial Literacy and Education Commission
http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/financial-education/Pages/commission-index.aspx

 

The National Endowment for Financial Education
http://www.nefe.org/

 

President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability
http://www.operationhope.org/images/uploads/Files/PACFCInterimReport.pdf

 

I do agree with the author about is her conclusion:  “Perhaps one way to celebrate Financial Literacy Month is to acknowledge that you need help from someone who puts your needs first, can separate emotions from the equation and who can guide you through life’s financial milestones.”

That is what Financial Literacy Month is about.  Acknowledging the need for help and acquiring the knowledge and information to do a better job of managing personal finances, and understanding where to seek help and whom to trust.

The role of Know Your Money is not only to be a source of information, but also to provide support and encouragement to those who want to improve their ability to manage their personal finances.

In my studies to become a life coach I learned how to help clients with life issues.  And the most profound aspect of life coaching is holding clients accountable.  What I get from Ms. Schlesinger’s article is that people must do a better job of holding themselves accountable for educating themselves and applying what they have learned.  That is a major issue, accountability.  But there is no fallacy in the idea of Financial Literacy Month.

There is an army of us who devote much of our time and energy to support, encourage, inform, and serve as cheerleaders for those trying to figure out how to do a better job of managing personal finances.  If you would like to know who we are just follow me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney.

Here are the remaining steps to financial wellness from Thirty Steps to Financial Wellness developed by Money Management International.  If you are serious about making progress, or maintaining your momentum in managing your personal finances go through this thirty step program:

Step 24 – Share A Tip for Change

Step 25 – Document Your Desired Spending

Step 26 – Protect Yourself by Performing Financial Check-ups

Step 27 – Understand the Cost Of Credit

Step 28 – Assemble A Financial Team

Step 29 – Appreciate the Benefits

Step 30 – Moving Forward

 

If you have questions or need help we are just an email away.  Send your questions to Info@KnowYourMoneyGlobal.com

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share?:
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 comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Follow us on Twitter for more information about personal money management
https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney

 

Copyright © 2015 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Financial Literacy Month 2015: Defeating Debt

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout 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.

 

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:
Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 W. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

We’re Celebrating Financial Literacy Month

Know Your Money
Tuesday – April 28, 2015

Financial Literacy Month 2015
Defeating Debt
By Donell Edwards

One of the most important steps in financial literacy is understanding debt.  How much debt one has, where it came from, and how to eliminate it.  It should be your goal as you become more financially literate to be debt free.

I share with you today an article written by a blogger named Brian who shares his personal experience with getting out of debt.  The article is entitled, “How to Kill Over $100,00 of Debt,” and appears on the Moneythink website.   Brian and his family eliminated $109,ooo in debt in a little over four years.

A great point to take from the article is that getting out of debt takes time; you didn’t get into debt in a day or a short period of time, and you won’t get out of debt without making a commitment for the long haul.

Here is one of the most profound things that Brian learned, “…what I found was that most personal finance principals are commons sense. You need to have a plan for your money in the form of a budget; spend less than you make; create an emergency fund; and prioritize needs over wants.”  These are the same things that we emphasize in this blog, helping people to act on these things is the challenge.

We strongly encourage that readers review this article.

Here is the link to the article:  http://moneythink.org/blog/kill-100000-debt/

 

 

 

Here is today’s step to financial wellness from Thirty Steps to Financial Wellness developed by Money Management International:

Step 22 – Identify Ways to Reduce Spending

 

EVENTS AND RESOURCE LINKS:

Hosting A Financial Literacy Month Event

2015 National Savings Forum

Financial Literacy Month Articles from Huffington Post 

The FoolProof Foundation

FoolProof Teacher

FoolProof Solo

 

If you have questions or need help we are just an email away.  Send your questions to Info@KnowYourMoneyGlobal.com

 

We welcome your comments and encourage you to share your knowledge about personal money management and financial literacy.  We hope to be a conduit for others to disseminate information on this subject to promote financial literacy and to enhance knowledge and understanding of the subject.  If you have comments you would like to share please send them to: 

Comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Follow us on Twitter for more information about personal money management
https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney

 

Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial adviser. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

 

Copyright © 2015 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

 

Financial Literacy Month 2015: Making Change

 

Felicia M. Johnson, BBA, MBA Financial Consultant

Felicia M. Johnson is an Assoc. Director in Academic Affairs at a higher education institution.  She teaches personal finance classes and is active in local organizations that help support the economy, women, and local community.

http://www.linkedin.com/in/feliciasigningoff

 

 

 

 

Know Your Money
Thursday – April 23, 2015

Financial Literacy Month 2015
Making Change
By Guest Contributor
Felicia M. Johnson

Was one of your New Year’s resolutions to make a financial change in your life? In January of this year, I began Elevate Book Club and our first book was “Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath. I felt it would be a great book to help the participants successfully change regardless if they were trying to improve their finances, lose weight, or advance their career. The Heath brothers believe to make a successful change, you have to do the following three things:

Direct the Rider – Investigate what works well in handling your finances and clone it! Make sure you truly understand why you need to improve your financial situation. Think of specific things you can do to change your finances. For example you may decide to only use cash when purchasing items in the store.

Motivate the Elephant – Now that you know you need to change your financial situation, make sure all those affected can “feel” why things need to change. Maybe instead of just telling your family that if overspending continues you will not be able to pay the electricity bill, have them “feel” what it is like not to have power by shutting it off for an entire day. A side benefit is the uninterrupted time you will get to spend with your family.

Shape the Path – Changing the situation leads to behavior changes. Set active triggers that will support the new change. For example every time you use cash dollar bills at the store, save the all the coins you receive in change in a jar. Then at the end of the month, count all the coins and place the money in your family emergency fund or other special fund account. You will be surprised how coins can add up to large sums of money. Just recently, my husband collected $131 in coins.

Young Woman Exercising on a Rowing Machine --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Young Woman Exercising on a Rowing Machine — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

 

Remember, “For things to change, somebody somewhere has to start acting differently”(Heath and Heath, 2010).

I would love to hear about your plans for financial change. Connect with me via LinkedIn at  http://www.linkedin.com/in/feliciasigningoff

Felicia Signing Off!

Works Cited:
Heath, C., & Heath, D. (2010). Switch: How to change things when change is hard. New York: Broadway Books.

Here is today’s step to financial wellness from Thirty Steps to Financial Wellness developed by Money Management International
Step 19 – Identify and Document Fixed Monthly Expenses
 
 

EVENTS AND RESOURCE LINKS:

Hosting A Financial Literacy Month Event

2015 National Savings Forum

Financial Literacy Month Articles from Huffington Post 

The FoolProof Foundation

FoolProof Teacher

FoolProof Solo

 

If you have questions or need help we are just an email away.  Send your questions to Info@KnowYourMoneyGlobal.com

 

We welcome your comments and encourage you to share your knowledge about personal money management and financial literacy.  We hope to be a conduit for others to disseminate information on this subject to promote financial literacy and to enhance knowledge and understanding of the subject.  If you have comments you would like to share please send them to: 

Comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Follow us on Twitter for more information about personal money management
https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney

 

Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial adviser. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

 

Copyright © 2015 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

Financial Literacy Month 2015: Time To Change Thinking About Saving

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout 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.

 

To book Mr. Edwards to speak at your next event, contact:
Donell Edwards Enterprises
13111 w. Markham St.
Suite 116
Little Rock, AR 72211
DLEdwards@DonellEdwardsEnterprises.com

 

We’re Celebrating Financial Literacy Month

Know Your Money
Tuesday – April 21, 2015

Financial Literacy Month 2015
Time To Change Thinking About Saving
By Donell Edwards

As we continue our celebration of Financial Literacy Month and our effort to focus attention on the need for many of us to become wiser in our personal money management, today we discuss the importance of saving and changing the attitude that many of us have about saving.

Much of today’s post is based on a New York CBS News affiliate interview with Lance Drucker, president and CEO of Drucker Wealth Management. The interview cites a 2014 study that reveals that only 2 in 5 Americans have a budget and are focused on living within that budget.  According to Mr. Drucker “We worry so much about the things we can’t control; the stock market, taxes.  But what we don’t worry about are the two things we really can control, how much we save and how much we spend.”

Mr. Drucker says that most of us have our thinking all wrong about saving.  He says that we pay our bills first, get what we want or do what we want with what is left after paying bills, and then if there is anything left over after that this is what we save.  He says this should be reversed and we should have a set amount set aside each pay period that we save, then pay our bills, and then do what we want with what is left.

Mr. Drucker says that most of us don’t do this because we lack discipline, we have developed wasteful spending habits, and we have not learned to live within our means.

The message is, in order to become more money smart and financially literate, we need to learn how to discipline ourselves to live within our means, and that requires changing the way that we think about saving and giving saving priority.

Watch CBS’s interview with Mr. Drucker below:

 

Here is today’s step to financial wellness from Thirty Steps to Financial Wellness developed by Money Management International:

Step 17 – Save For Your Goals

 

EVENTS AND RESOURCE LINKS:

Hosting A Financial Literacy Month Event

2015 National Savings Forum

Financial Literacy Month Articles from Huffington Post 

The FoolProof Foundation

FoolProof Teacher

FoolProof Solo

 

If you have questions or need help we are just an email away.  Send your questions to Info@KnowYourMoneyGlobal.com

 

We welcome your comments and encourage you to share your knowledge about personal money management and financial literacy.  We hope to be a conduit for others to disseminate information on this subject to promote financial literacy and to enhance knowledge and understanding of the subject.  If you have comments you would like to share please send them to: 

Comments@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.

 

Follow us on Twitter for more information about personal money management
https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney

 

Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial adviser. However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money. The Know Your Money Blog posts written by me are my own common sense observations and opinions and are for informational use only. Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

 

Copyright © 2015 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved

 

Financial Literacy Month 2015: The Steps To Financial Wellness

Donell Edwards, Blogger

DONED2014 SmallAbout 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.

 

We’re Celebrating Financial Literacy Month

Know Your Money
Wednesday – April 1, 2015

Financial Literacy Month
The Steps to Financial Wellness
By Donell Edwards  

Today is the beginning of Financial Literacy Month, and there is only one way to say this; Americans are in serious trouble when it comes to financial literacy.  This is not an exaggeration, it is not being overly dramatic,  it is just the brutal truth supported by countless studies and reports.  The purpose of Know Your Money Global (KYMG) and our blog is to heighten awareness of this monumental issue, and to provide solutions, information, tools, and resources to help readers change their approach to personal money management and how they think about managing money.

During Financial Literacy Month this year KYMG will continue to feature the Thirty Steps To Financial Wellness program developed by Money Management International to provide readers with a step-by-step process to develop the skills they need to become more financially literate.  Each day we will feature one of the steps from the program.  In addition, we will also feature outstanding and informative articles from finance professionals and articles and posts from contributing writers.

We found an article that is a perfect to begin our promotion of Financial Literacy Month from June 2014 from CNBC written by Kathleen Burns Kingsbury entitled, Americans Need A Financial Wake-Up Call.  We strongly recommend this article to our readers, especially any who may have doubts about how severe the financial literacy problem in America is.  Ms. Kingsbury begins her article by making a very insightful statement that is at the heart of this problem for so many people , “You know what steps to take to improve your finances but you fail to take them.”  So, a major part of the problem is not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of discipline.

Whatever your financial condition may be, we encourage you to make the commitment now to use this Financial Literacy Month to become more financially literate by reading the recommended articles, and by visiting the Money Management International and other recommended websites, and each day at least reviewing the featured step from the Thirty Steps to Financial Wellness program.

 

Businesswoman with Arms Outstretched

   
   

Today’s Financial Wellness Step from Thirty Steps To Financial Wellness developed by Money Management International:

Commit to Change

Take the Pledge

 

If you have questions or need help we are just an email away.  Send your questions to Info@KnowYourMoneyGlobal.com  

 

We Would Like To Hear From You.  Are There Any Brave Souls Out There Willing To Share? 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 info@knowyourmoneyglobal.com.  

 

Follow us on Twitter for more information about personal money management https://twitter.com/Kn0wY0urM0ney  

 

Disclaimer:  I have a Bachelor of Business Administration degree but I am not a financial adviser.  However, I have acquired years of knowledge about personal money management through my life experience working through my own personal finances that allows me to share that knowledge with readers of Know Your Money.  The Know Money Blog posts written by me are my own opinions and are for informational use only.  Although my blog includes contributions from experienced financial professionals, please make your own financial decisions based on personal research or contact a financial adviser.

Copyright © 2015 CWR Media – All Rights Reserved