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Start 2017 with Good Financial Habits
I had an opportunity to be on the New Day Northwest Show here in Seattle earlier this month (http://www.king5.com/mb/entertainment/television/programs/new-day-northwest/start-2017-with-good-financial-habits/381965861) to talk about Good Financial Habits and I thought I’d share a few tips with you.
After the holidays, many of us review the previous year and make plans for a better New Year. Issues around money and our financial position tend to be near the top of everybody’s list for improvement. There are some practical steps that you can take to enhance your finances for 2017 and I’m delighted to outline some of these for you.
First, decide what you want. Answer the following questions to help you to create your powerful goal statements:
- What amount of money do I want to be financially free in 2017?
- How will I feel having met my goal for improved finances?
- What will my life be like with that financial freedom?
- Who will I be with and where will we be?
- What talents and skills will I be using?
Now create goal statements that you can use in your daily morning practice as described in my book, The Path to Wealth; Seven Spiritual Steps for Financial Abundance. e.g. “I am so grateful that I now have a minimum or more that $___ to use and enjoy, bless others with, and invest and increase as my CSO guides and directs me to do so. I’m delighted that I live financially free and that my family and I enjoy a sense of satisfaction as we easily and joyfully live within our means with all of our needs met in a beautiful home that allows us to feel happy and loved. I’m so grateful that I use my remarkable skills and talents in meaningful ways to help my company accomplish our mission and that I appreciate my coworkers, customers, and vendors and feel valued by all related to my work. I love my peaceful and joyful life of financial freedom!”
Next, each morning write down your goal statements, read them out loud, and imagine seeing yourself in your financially free life. Throughout the day, expect and watch for possibilities and intuitive directions to take steps that will help you to achieve your goals.
In addition to using your daily morning practice to achieve more of your goals for 2017, there are some practical things that can do to help improve your financial position this year:
- Invest in Yourself
- Contribute to your company 401K retirement account with pre-tax dollars. Employers often match some of your contribution – that’s free money!
- If there isn’t a 401K, open a Roth IRA with after tax dollars for tax free income at retirement.
- Live Within Your Means
- Identify all of the income received from your job and other sources in 2016.
- Review how you spent your income and list the amounts spent by category like housing, utilities, transportation, food, clothing, entertainment, etc. If you don’t know the exact amounts, do the best that you can to make estimates.
- Determine what needs to change so that your spending doesn’t exceed your income.
- Monitor Your Progress Monthly
- Create a budget for your desired income and spending – use a simple on line tool like mint.com.
- Enter actual income and spending each month in 2017 and report to a friend, spouse, or partner on your progress monthly.
- Reduce Your Consumer Debt
- Create a plan to pay off the highest interest consumer debt (credit cards) first and call your credit card company to see if they can reduce the interest rate while you’re paying off the balance.
- If your debt is higher than you’d like, consider other temporary part time work to earn more income to pay down your debt faster.
- Investigate Buying vs Renting a Home
- Once you’ve paid down your consumer debt and are living within your means, contact your bank or go on line to a mortgage rate calculator to determine what price of home you could afford for the same rent that you’re paying now. Be sure to include the taxes, insurance, and other expenses when determining the amount of home you can afford.
- Owning a home has tax benefits and the appreciation can be substantial for the future. In Seattle, home values have risen almost 20% over the past year!
I believe that 2017 can be one of your very best and most prosperous years yet. Consistency and good financial habits are the key! As financial expert, Suze Orman, said “No one's ever achieved financial fitness with a January resolution that's abandoned by February.”
I believe that you are a valuable and unique person and that you can live a free life filled with all that you desire. Take the time to give yourself that gift. You have proved how powerful you are and can now demonstrate that in your new happy, free, prosperous and healthy life. You can learn more success principles in my book, The Path to Wealth; Seven Spiritual Steps for Financial Abundance. www.bizzultz.com/book