Managing your finances can be difficult when you don’t have a budget and a financial goal in place. It is easy to spend without costing up how this can affect your budget.
Have you ever looked at your financial situation and wondered where did all my finances go? What did I spend on, that was so important or significant that ended me up in an undesirable financial position?
You may be one of millions globally that don’t have control of their spending, but rather, their financial situation controls them. Don’t let your finances control you!
“don’t let your finances control you”
Lack of finances due to mis-management not only causes frustration, it can also affect quality of life. Financial stress affects people physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually. How many times have I heard someone say God is going to provide, yet, when I look at their financial income, God has already provided. The problem isn’t the provision, but rather the expenditure.
“the problem isn’t the provision, but rather the expenditure”
RECOGNISE FINANCIAL STRIFE
To recognise financial strife, you need to ask yourself a few questions:
- Am I spending more than I am making? I.e., is my income less than my expenditure?
- Do I have growing savings that in the case of difficult times or unexpected circumstances, I have reserve funds?
- Do I have debt on a credit card that is not being paid on time?
- Have I taken out a personal loan that I am struggling to pay back?
In order to get your finances in order, you must be honest when asking yourself these questions. In most cases, financial stress and debt can be rectified, and better still, avoided.
MAKE GOOD FINANCIAL DECISIONS
In order to manage your finances, you should have a realistic goal and an aligning budget in place. Why is it important to have a goal? Goals provide direction and purpose.
Firstly, come up with a financial goal. It can be as simple as paying off your debt or wanting to purchase a new car in 6 months or a home in 12 months. Work out, what finances you require in order to reach your goal. For a house, perhaps you need to save $50K.
You then look at your income and your current expenditure. Work out strategies that you can implement, that will see more funds going towards your saving pool. For example, I want to purchase a car in 6 months. If I can save an additional $200 per week, I will reach my goal. A few tips to save include:
- Only buy what you need, not what you want
- Do not shop on impulse. When going to the shops, have a shopping list prepared and ensure you don’t deviate from this.
- Purchase what is on special. If apples are 99c/kg, then purchase apples
- Put 10% of what you get paid in a savings account (emergency fund)
- Make your own pre-lunches and coffees for work (this can save a fortune per week)
A tip my mother gave me that I will never forget – don’t go shopping hungry. Have you ever gone grocery shopping hungry and walked out with a full trolley? Upon eating, you regret the items you purchased on impulse, influenced by your immediate hunger?
APPLY BIBLICAL PRINCIPLES
When you spend, you must apply wisdom and control. God asks us to give back what belongs to Him, this is, our whole tithe, cheerfully. God loves a cheerful giver. What does this mean? The day you get paid, you give back to the Lord 10% of your earnings.
- When you get paid, give God His 10%
- Give generously to the poor/needy
- Handle money wisely. In order to do this, you need to keep a few things in mind.