3 Tips for Regaining Control of Your Finances

by Miranda Marquit · 0 comments

Do you ever feel like your money controls you, rather than the other way around?

We all have times when we feel like we aren’t in control of our money. If you want to feel like you are in control of your finances, here are three tips that can help you get started:

1. Track Your Spending

The first step to gaining control of your finances is to know where that money is going. Many of us make financial choices and purchases without really thinking about whether these items are important to us. Unless you track your spending, you might not even be fully aware of where  your money is going.

Use some method of tracking your spending. I use personal finances software. You can use a spreadsheet or pen and paper. The important thing is to record everything you spend money on. Then, you can look at your habits and find patterns. You might even discover that you spend more money than  you should on things that aren’t that important to you.

Once you understand your situation, you will be in a better position to take control and change your habits.

2. Institute a Waiting Period

One of the best ways to regain control of your finances is to institute a waiting period before you make purchases. A spending diet can help you get in the habit of exercising control over your spending. Choose a waiting period that works for you. Before you buy something, wait 14, 30, or 45 days before you complete the purchase. If you have forgotten about the purchase in that time period, or don’t find yourself needing to use it, you can decide not to buy it.

Just instituting a waiting period of a few days can make a big difference. I like to pause before I buy something and ask myself if I will really use it, or if I truly need it. It’s not a huge waiting period, but it’s one that forces me to think through the options. More often than not, I end up putting the item back. Conscious spending is one of the best ways to remain in control of your money.

3. Clear Out the Clutter

You might be surprised at how helpful getting rid of the clutter can be when it comes to regaining control of your finances.

First of all, cleaning out your clutter can help you rethink your spending habits. It’s a good reminder of how often you make unnecessary purchases and it can help you rethink your priorities, which is always a positive stepping when it comes to money choices.

You can also benefit when you sell or donate the items. Selling the clutter allows you to boost how much money you have. Use that money to shore up your financial situation by paying down debt or building an emergency fund. It’s a good way to get back on track.

Once you have cleared out the clutter, make conscious spending your next step. Before adding again to the clutter, really think about what an item will add to your home or your life. If it doesn’t help, you can take back the power and say no to it.

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