Putting Theory into Practice: 33 Easy Ways to Build A Solid Financial Foundation
  • Theory Shameory:  Bridging the Disconnect between Money Thoughts and Money Practice I have to admit that I am a self-help buff. I love the idea of looking within with the goal of leaving better than when I chartered out…moving some stuff in, throwing some stuff out, collapsing this, expanding that… you get the hint. But, here is the caveat about self-help. It does not work without practice AND it requires patience, commitment, and adaptive problem-solving.The only way that you know you have transformed is not when things are ideal: when there is nothing that you see that is cute in the store, you have no battling financial priorities, or you have a volume of discretionary income but when your financial circumstances are complex: you like to shop but you need to save for school, you just got paid and your irresponsible sister asks for a loan, you received a promotion and a raise and the pressure to keep up with the Joneses is surfacing…
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  • Taking Off the Training WheelsIn the latest Essence, Clutch, Uptown, or Ebony, it would be easy to take a quiz on financial theory, tally your score, and label yourself highly financially savvy or literate. There is nothing easy about standing strong in this consumer-heavy, predatory world.But you CAN do it! You just have to get out there and make moves. Will you make mistakes? Possibly! Will you revert to your spending ways when times are tough? Perhaps! Will you be better off, more confidence, more self-authoring, a pleasure to around, an envy to your former unevolved financial self? ABSOLUTELY!Never Go To War Without Armor It’s your choice- pick one, pick two, pick three. Choose from any of the following as you build– dollar by dollar, decision by decision, reflection by reflection, YOUR financial future. Solid. Meaningful.
    1. Create and repeat your money mantra.
    2. Do NOT go there if you know you are tempted to spend.
    3. Call your girlfriend to smack some sense (cents) into you.
    4. Leave your wallet at home.
    5. Create a budget and stick to it.
    6. Make it a community effort by identifying a “savings” partner.
    7. Ask to speak to the manager. “I am willing to pay…”
    8. Barter with girlfriends.
    9. Pack your lunch
    10.  Leave it for 2 days then come back.
    11. See if you have it in your house already.
    12.  Clean your house and sell whatever is left.
    13.  Turn your passions into profit.
    14.  Marry wealthy. (SIKE! just to see if you’re paying attention)
    15.  Pay in cash.
    16.  Stick with big bills so you can monitor your spending with more accuracy.
    17.  Find several functions for one thing. (Think: Is that a plastic bag or shower cap?)
    18.  Eat out less.
    19. Get a pre-paid phone and/or cut the cable.
    20.  Ask for a sponsor.
    21.  Stay in 25% more.
    22.  If you are frustrated, call a girlfriend or journal about it– just stay out of the racks.
    23.  Buy it used/Share it.
    24. Unsubscribe to Groupon, Living Social, or any other site that brings sales to your inbox.
    25.  Reflect on your financial identity.
    26. Volunteer your time (it keeps you busy).
    27. Find your magic number and pay yourself this amount first.
    28. Prepare a financial sob story so that your moocher friend(s) can’t beg or borrow. 🙂
    29. Get a financial coach or a financial advisor.
    30.  Say “no” when you can’t afford it or don’t think it’s worth the price.
    31. Cancel those unread subscriptions.
    32. Move back home temporarily (if it’s emotionally and financially a good move)
    33. Read some personal finance books that are relatable and easy to understand.

Frugalistas: Which of these do you already do? What am I missing?

If you’re waiting for a sign that it’s time to make a change, consider this it. Money Therapy may be just what you need to break through your financial blocks and release your money guilt and shame.   

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