Sometimes, it’s not about how much you earn that matters, but how it’s how you manage your finances that can harm or make you prosperous. Here are three ways to be financially disciplined.
I love money. I love topics that touch on finances. I binge watch YoutTube channels and read books that give financial advice. I used to even love watching Mzansi Magic’s (DStv channel 161) show called I Blew It, which shared how people blew up their windfall. It was so entertaining to me, yet informative as the common thread that weaved into each person’s story was financial illiteracy. Whether or not we like it, money is a universal language. We all need it to get by. Even in these tough economic times, we still need to eat. I am grateful I have a job and I am grateful for my salary. But, I still feel like it would be great to take on another side hustles to accumulate extra income to help me afford the things I need, like paying my car loan sooner or fund my emotional buying habit, which I want to get rid of. With this said, I have learnt through several mistakes and losing a job at some point in my life the art of being financially disciplined. Here are hacks I incorporate in my financial journey:
Have a budget book or download a budget app: From as far back as 2013, I had already started the habit of recording my financial activities in a book. I like tracing where my weaknesses fall when it comes to my spending, and no, it’s not on food or going out, but definitely on clothes! Drawing up a budget and sticking to it is important and having a book and app to help you see which till your money goes to goes a long way. It helps you cut back on the things you don’t need so you can save more or add to your loan repayment.
Pay yourself first: To make sure that I have money in my savings, investment and emergency funds, I ensure that a portion of my salary is debited to those accounts first. I then use the rest of my money to pay off my debts and necessities before I splurge on what’s remaining.
Learn to say no, not now. Or lay-by instead of taking items on credit: Sometimes, you may be pushed to the corner with your finances. Your family or friends might ask you to help them financially. If you can and have boundaries, then by all means. But you must learn to say no when your finances are stretched, even if it makes you look bad. You must also learn to say no to your own desires, especially when you see something you didn’t budget for… that is on sale! Rather, lay-by pricey purchases instead of using credit, which incurs interest. Try your best to stick to your budget by staying far away from the mall if you don’t need to go there or even take your lunch to work, instead of buying at the canteen.
How do you remain financially disciplined? Share your tips in the comments below.