If you want to establish a solid financial foundation, you need to what is happening with your money. And you need to figure out who’s in charge of your money. Creating a financial philosophy can help you decide how to use your money to help you live the lifestyle you want.
One of the problems we run into, as humans, is that, without a financial philosophy it’s easy to be swayed by advertising, and what looks “normal” when you see how your neighbors live. Unfortunately, that’s one way to end up with high levels of debt, and even higher levels of money-related stress.
Rather than be blown about by trends, and rather than trying to match up to someone else’s version of how you are supposed to live, it makes sense to decide what’s important to you.
What Do YOU Value?
First of all, figure out what you value. Everyone places priority on different things. Money is a tool, just like anything else. It can be used to help or hinder. If you want it to help you, you need to have a clear idea of what you want your life to look like.
Once you understand your values and create goals that help you live your values, you can begin taking charge of your financial future. It’s also important to understand that you might have different priorities at different points in your life. If you have a great deal of high-interest credit card debt, it makes sense to make paying that off a priority. Once the debt is paid off, you can focus on something else. Having that financial freedom to move forward can be a great help to you as you begin getting your house in order.
Will More Stuff Make You Happy?
While many people like to have nice things, having a bunch of stuff is unlikely to make you happy in the long run. While it’s nice to have some of these things, the reality is that there can always be more. Ben Franklin said,
Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of filling a vacuum, it makes one.
Buying the comforts of life can be one way to enhance your overall situation, but it’s not everything, and the most important things are the things that you can’t really buy with money. So, yes, having financial freedom is a good thing that will improve your life, but it really helps to understand your motivations beyond that, and have a solid idea of what you want for your life, and then use money as a tool to achieve your goals.
Get rid of the stuff you don’t care about, and start focusing on the things that are most important to you. You’ll get back on the right financial track, and you’ll be in a better financial position as well.
Watch our panelists discuss financial philosophies and priorities, and their importance in getting your finances in order. Do you have a financial philosophy? What is it? How did you arrive at it? Leave us a comment below.
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