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Top 10 Ways To Banish Financial Stress Part 2

Updated on February 27, 2010

2) Put your finances on the computer. Both Quicken and Microsoft Money are excellent programs that will allow you to get a clear picture of your finances. You will be able to look at your net worth statement and see that things aren't as bad as you thought. You will learn that a dollar saved is better than a dollar earned (it's not taxed) and that a dollar paid toward your mortgage raises your net worth just as much as a dollar invested in the stock market.

3) Make a money emergency list. Write down at least 50 sources of backup money that you could get if you needed it in a pinch. Everything from a second mortgage to your father-in-law, to a nighttime waitressing job, to selling that stationary bike which makes such a good suit valet. You'll know that if the wolf is ever at the door, you do have emergency backup. You'll never be on the street.

4) Make another list, of those people you admire most. How many of them are rich? How many talk about their stock market profits? Use this list to remind yourself that the character traits and deeds you admire most are not financial.

5) Invest automatically. Put at least one savings account on autopilot, by authorizing a mutual fund to draw a set amount out of your checking account every month. You won't miss the money. And before you know it, you'll have a nice little bit of spare cash. If you put $125 a month into a long-term stock fund, you could have $1,574 in a year, $9,808 in five years and $26,351 in 10.

6) Learn to separate your money from yourself. If you work for yourself, it's a good idea to have a name for your business that's different from your own name. Think of money as a tool, like a hammer or pencil. Use that tool to fulfill your own goals.

7) Have a financial plan, even if it's an informal one that you write yourself. Put a price tag on the goals that are important to you, and evaluate the price by deciding how much time it takes you to earn the money for that price. Decide which goals are worth working for and which aren't. Budget for the ones that you really want.

8) Schedule some free fun every week.

9) Surf through financial websites and educate yourself on the world of money and how it works.

10) Contain your worries. Allow yourself five minutes a day of abject dread. Think of the worst-case financial scenario, remember your list of emergency backup money, and put it all away. Then be more self assured and stop worrying... think about sex instead.

Don't worry, be happy. And if worse comes to worse, you can always take the last bit of money you can scrape up and move to a deserted South Pacific Island. Nice weather, lots of coconuts, and all the sushi you can catch! At least you will have escaped the rat race, even though the rat race might take on a whole new meaning when you're chasing one up a palm tree to have for dinner! Have a very happy and sunburned Survivor life on that beach!

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