The main reason why people have jobs is so that they can pay off their bills. I mean, keep a roof over your head, move from point A to point B and put food in your belly, right? Well, truth is, most of us – or maybe almost all of us– earn more than what’s required to take care of these basic needs. So we end up getting a nicer house, a nicer car, nicer phones, nicer clothes well ….you get my point.
The reality is that more than 70% of people spend all the money they earn each week and by the end of their pay cycle, they have nothing and are just waiting for the next pay to come in.
If this describes you, then it’s sad to say this but you will always be in a financial struggle. Well, unless of course money just grows on your tree, you will almost never get ahead! For as long as you spend all the money you earn, you will be interwoven in an endless financial struggle.
To free yourself from this financial bondage, you need to seriously start to spend LESS that you actually bring home, because it is not about how much you make but rather how much you keep. You need to start thinking of starting a savings plan, ending debt, getting an emergency fund and getting a retirement savings plan. I know all too well from experience that money without financial intelligence is money soon gone. Don’t despair, it’s okay if you were taught how to make money but not how to manage it, you are not alone and good news is – You can start this today!
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You also need to get the ideology that the money you are paid, is just money to be spent out of your mind. Every dollar counts. Yes, some of your money does have to be spent on basic needs like food, shelter and the like, but it’s always not long before you start spending it on things you want rather than things you need. It was as struggle for me to get here too, but believe you me, you can get there. It will not be easy but it sure will be worth it! And I know you know this too.
There is definitely NO secret or a miracle plan on the same. You have to get educated about money. Re-examine your money mindset and understand what money means to you. Statistics have shown that our parents’ attitudes and behavior with money growing up also influences the decisions one makes as an adult. But good news is, whether you acquired good or bad money behavior, it can be made better. All you need is to make that decision to want to be better.
Look at it this way, every time you do that: (spend money on things you want and not need), you take a step away from whatever it is that you want to achieve or own so desperately in your life. Own you pay check, control what money does in your life, and don’t let it control you!
I look forward to further discussing finances with you guys. Because I know many of us secretly struggle in this sector yet not many are willing to openly accept or discuss it. This is one area in my life that I never learnt in school nor at home, but rather life had to teach me, so why not share what I learn and you share yours and we can both continue to learn. With this said, today I shall dwell on the bad money habits that we tend to acquire and need to be often reminded to stop so that we do not stray. They are discussed below:
- The, I deserve it Mindset: Oh child. Wasn’t this my forte? This is where you spend money – not because you need the item- but because you feel like you deserve it. Like you have earned it. Do you get me? For example, this bag is calling out my name because you did this great things at work today. Giving yourself excuses such as you worked so hard today yet working so hard that day did not increase what you make per hour, is a No! No! How about you go home, take a nice long bubble bath and get you some sleep, now that you deserve! You can thank me later!
- Trying to impress others: According to statistics, 40% of people admitted to having over spent just in order to prove a point to people. We are all victims, recovering or partial victims, whether we do it knowingly or unknowingly. It’s time we realize that this is a real thing, and try the best we can to avoid it, as it tends to do us more harm than good.
- Confusing Wants and needs: A need is essentially something you cannot live without. For example, food, clothing and shelter. While a want is something you can live without. For example, entertainment, a game, or going to see your favorite artist etc. There is huge difference between a need and a want. Live within your means, but within your needs, I would suggest. Seek to know the difference between the two and not let your wants outweigh your needs. Ask yourself with every purchase, “Is this a need or a want?” I also just recently talked about this in an article about De-cluttering, if you missed it here it is http://kenyankinks.com/2018/08/10/how-to-de-clutter/
- Spending Emotionally: Sometimes we tend to spend our hard earned money as a temporal compensation to how we feel. For instance, let’s say you suffer a break up with your partner and think that the only way to make yourself feel better is by going shopping. Well, if you had saved up specifically for when you break up, then sure darling, go on a haul, spoil yourself! But if you know damn well that you had not planned it, avoid this bad money habit that renders you not only without a partner but without the extra pennies you initially had.
- FOMO: Also known as the Fear of Missing Out. Well, so your friends are going to see this artist that’s coming into town in a state near you. And you are really not in a financial position to join them. My advice is, live within your means. If you cannot make it. Just be brave enough to stick out of this one, and your wallet will thank you! Don’t go the extra mile just because you have the FOMO. Trust me, there will always be another time! Or better yet, why not think of changing your click of friends?
- The Scarcity Mindset: Well, this is more like a mind game. I could preach about this all day. The more you think scarcity (not having), the more you attract lack (Law of Attraction). Think of having, owning, possessing and living the feeling it would bring you when you have what you want and trust you me -from my own experience – you attract what you constantly think and want. What you cannot see is far greater than you can see. To some, this may sound weird, but to whom-ever it talks to, practice it! It literally changed my life. This is also why I live by the motto: “What your mind can conceive/believe, it can achieve”. I would recommend that you read this particular book: Here is a link https://amzn.to/2P9QQjo But if you live in Kenya and cannot find it, another book that changed my life is a book given to me as a gift by a friend (Mbati lupesh, if you are reading this, BLESS YOU for this price-less gift that you probably don’t even recall that you gave me) in high school; called ‘Letting Go’ by Muneeza Khimji. I believe it can be found at Sarit Centre, Text book center,in Nairobi-Kenya. I really hope it still sells. Or better yet, find these books on Kindle! Good Luck.
- Embracing that you are bad with money: This is where you acknowledge that you are bad with money, and start to accept and embrace the bad habit and hence you are always broke. This is the worst form of bad money habit and unfortunately where a majority of us lie. They accept their ‘misery’ and live in it. This pretty much means that you are forever doomed, which is totally unacceptable! Do not allow yourself to sit with a bad habit in comfort and expect growth. Ever. Again, the change will not happen in a day, week or month. But one thing I know for sure is: doing nothing will only make you feel worse and doing something – consistently- will make you feel so much stronger and secure. Choose your battle wisely my dear friend.
- Impulse Gratification: This is where you spend your hard earned money to satisfy your current desire, which you almost always end up regretting. Please try not be a victim of impulse spending. Buy things you had prior plan on getting, and more so, have the money to purchase. Having been a hopeless victim of impulse buying. I made one rule that changed my impulse buying forever. The rule I made a year ago was and still is that: my checking account will have a minimum amount of XYZ. This means that however much I think I need something, I will never go below the XYZ limit. I purposely chose to wait until I have more than that amount (XYZ) to get what I think I need. Which I always almost ended up not needing hence not buying. This same thought instantly turns off my impulse gratification. Again, it did not happen overnight, it was a process. But with discipline and commitment, you eventually get there. Good luck babes!
- Enthusiastic Optimist: In as good as having an optimistic mindset about money is, it should not go to the extent where you keep spending because you know or believe that you will get more. Spend wisely and know your limits. How I overcame this bad habit was from reading a financial literacy book that taught me to repeatedly say to myself each time I was prompted to spend money, “I deserve to be in control of my finances”. So I would call upon this thought each time I was considering a purchase. So buying a new model car, or latest phone sounds enticing. But will the crazy payments help you gain control of your financial control let alone help you gain more money? You tell me, or better yet, tell yourself. With this, sooner than later, you will find yourself making all sorts of smart money decisions big and small: that will catapult you on your path to real financial independence. Can I hear an Amen?!
Last but not least, money has no power on its own. We give it power through our choices in how we spend and save it. So, remember to remind yourself daily that money or a lack of it doesn’t determine who you are!
Also remember to pray to our Heavenly Father for knowledge and wisdom on the same.
And, don’t be afraid to ask for advice, trust me, we all need that help!
Thank you guys for hanging. Always feel free to leave any feedback. Let me know what you think. Want more on lifestyle topics? Here http://kenyankinks.com/category/lifestyle/
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