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I Improved My Finances With These 5 Steps

Updated on September 13, 2017

I Improved My Finances With These 5 Steps

While money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, it certainly provokes anxiety, fear, and a host of other uncomfortable emotions when we don’t have it. Burying our heads in the sand and refusing to acknowledge our current financial position is a tried and true recipe for disaster.

The truth is that we all have the opportunity to improve our finances, whether we want to make extra money or gain control of our current income streams. With the proper tools and knowledge, we can shift our attitude towards money from one of fear to one of empowerment.

Create A Budget Challenge

It may seem daunting, but creating a budget is crucial part step to developing financial freedom and a can-do attitude when it comes to money.

Wondering how to make a budget? Take stock of your income, living expenses, and saving goals. There are many online budget tools that do the math for you, so all you need to worry about is accounting for your cash flow. My personal favorite is Mint, which tracks the money you spend in different buckets, offers a section to keep your bills organized, and even lets you check your credit.

The more honest you can be about your financial situation when creating a budget, the better the results. Consider creating a budget challenge between you and your friends in order to maintain an accountability and support system.

Make Money Online

The most fun way to improve your finances? Finding new and unexpected sources of income. If you want to find creative ways to add flexibility into your budget and make some extra money, the internet can be a fantastic tool.

Taking paid online surveys is the easiest way to earn some extra cash from anywhere. I tried out several different sites and finally landed on my favorite. Enter Survey Junkie, an online platform that actually pays people to express their opinion.

From my experience, Survey Junkie is an easy and engaging way to earn some extra money online. Because they base the surveys they send me on my personal profile, I actually feel like my opinion matters when answering the questions. Plus, they offer several different ways to cash out, so I've been rewarded with everything from Starbucks and Amazon gift cards to earning money in PayPal account.

Other opportunities, including proofreading or transcribing documents, making small investments, and selling old books, are available to make money online. Or sign up for an app like Offer Up, which makes it easy to sell used items in your area. These tools may not make you rich, but they will certainly provide some wiggle room so you don’t have to forego your morning coffee.

Implement a Rewards System

It’s hard for us to stick to any system that seems rooted in nothing but punishment. That’s why it’s essential to reward yourself for each budget benchmark you cross. Set aside a portion of your monthly budget to buy something special as a way to celebrate your financial accomplishments. Want to track your accomplishments? Use an app like Goals on Track; this handy tool has a finance and wealth section to help you stay on the course before celebrating your achievements.

Replace Your Cards with Cash

It sounds old-fashioned, but going to the bank withdraw a weekly allowance is a tremendously to stay on track with your budget and take control of your finances. Flinging around a plastic card or scanning Apple Pay may be simple and convenient – but when you’re trying to budget it’s almost too convenient. When you watch the money you spend physically drain from your wallet, it’s much easier to remain in touch with where your cash is going.

Befriend Your Bills

When we’re in a financial crunch, the last thing we want to do is open a stack of bills. But avoiding the reality of your what you owe, ignoring your credit statement, or dodging collectors’ calls only serves to keep you in the dark regarding your financial situation. If you want to take control of your finances today, the best thing you can do for yourself is remain aware of what you owe and to whom.

Gain Control of Your Money – Now!

There are tons of ways to improve your financial situation and meet your bottom line, without the accompanying anxiety. These five simple steps will help you to feel empowered and in control of your money.

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