If wisdom can be described as the ability to recognize consequences, then how would you rate your level of financial wisdom? And if you self score on the lower level, then the next question is “Are you willing to do what it takes to improve matters?” We can learn thru the observation of the successes and failures of others. Or we can learn thru our own failures and missteps. Which would you prefer?
“Contentment, contrary to popular opinion is not being satisfied where you are. It is knowing God’s plan for your life, having the conviction to live it, and believing that God’s peace is greater than the world’s problems.”
– Larry Burkett
Do you have it? Are you living in a place of contentment? Or have you stopped dreaming of and working on a better tomorrow? Be honest with yourself.
Alright now, time to check in. The first quarter of the year has come and gone, and the second quarter ends in just a couple of days. Yes, June is here – welcome to the mid year mark. Check back in now that the hoopla of a Happy New Year has worn off and reality has set in. You had goals that you had set for yourself to make sure that 2013 is not a repeat of 2012. I want to know how you are doing on them. Do you remember what they were? Did you write them down so that you can reference back and measure your own successes? Do You know how you are doing on them?
Winners keep score because it helps you know where you are, how far you have come and how much improvement you have managed. And no matter how good you think you are, there is still room for improvement and growth. And no matter how bad you think you are, there is always someone worse off than you, and there is always a baby step you can take towards getting better. Don’t give up on yourself or on the process. It took you years to dig yourself into a financial hole, don’t get frustrated because you don’t come out overnight. You come out one step at a time. One decision at a time.
Your position in life today is the result of the decisions that you made in the past and the habits that you execute daily. Make a new decision about your financial health and commit to your own success! And no matter where you are in the process right now, remember to celebrate your self (celebrate that you now have the self awareness to want something better for your family’s financial future, celebrate that you have decided to do something about it, celebrate the progress you have made).
It is that time of year again – when W2’s are provided to show how much you have been paid for the year for all the work that you have done. And it shows how much money has come through your hands. If you are like most people, you look at it and think “how can that be right?” You worked hard, but it just seems that the money went out faster than it came in. If that was your reaction to your W2 again this year, let’s make a change for next year by planning ahead. How can you change that? It all starts with the decision to give your money a job to do before it arrives in your hands. Money without a pre-planned strategy has a tendency to get away from you before you know it – wasted on quick trips to the store and gone in $20 and $30 and $100 increments – gone before you know it and spent on things that you won’t even remember a year from now.
Make 2013 different. Start each month with a plan. Tell your paychecks what they will do for you before payday even arrives. Don’t worry about tackling the whole year. Just start with one month at a time. Then move forward with peace of mind. Gain control of your finances One Bite Sized Piece At A Time. You can do it!
This picture is the visual image of my morning drive to attend church on the first Sunday of 2013. Funny thing is that I overslept my alarm clock that morning and was rushing to get ready and left the house a little ticked at being late and starting off scattered. And that feeling lasted until I stopped looking at the inconveniences and looked up into the morning sky. I saw one of the most beautiful sunrises that stopped me in my tracks. The morning sunrise reminded me of God’s beauty and all the possibilities of new beginnings. And as if that were not enough, when I got to church the message from the pulpit spoke of first fruits and giving back to God that which belongs to Him.
So here is the challenge I made to myself, and one that I now share with you. Today is your opportunity to commit (or recommit) to yourself that right now is the beginning of a new level of dedication to being a good steward of what you have been blessed with, and surely give the first fruits of blessings to Him. Be creative in your understanding of your blessings. Some are financial, but they don’t stop there. This is about more than money. Some are spiritual. Some are physical. Some are natural talents. And others can be relational. So look in each of these areas to identify your blessings, and find a way to give back the best part of it as a dedicated gift to God (the One who blessed you with the gift in the first place).
However you brought in the ringing of the new year last night, look up, it is a new day. The sun is shining and you are blessed to see another day and another new year. Yesterday is gone and forever done. Today is here and a new opportunity to walk in the purpose God has placed in your heart. Let’s make 2013 a year of purpose, a year of living out your passion and doing something meaningful. Think about it, what can you do to be a blessing to someone else today? Look for a way to make your creator smile!
Can you believe it?! It’s practically here. Most of us planned to make this be the first year that we finished our shopping early and refuse to go into debt over the holiday madness. The question is how many were able to stick to the commitment that we made to ourselves months ago? If you started shopping early, then congratulations to you because you probably saved money on the gifts that you bought weeks ago. And if you shopped only with cash and no credit, then you are a rock star! Because you can wrap up the holiday without having it follow you into the new year with high interest rates and lower credit scores. If you cannot take credit for either of these accomplishments then know that you are not alone, and we have work to do.
Let’s commit to do better. We will take one Bite Sized Piece at a time to financial freedom. Come and go with me.