Five Bad Habits That Keep You From Financial Peace

by admin on August 5, 2013

Help Calculator Shows Borrow Savings And BudgetingThis weekend marked the end of an extremely busy week for me.  Not only did I have my regular job to maintain, but I had existing clients to service, as well as new potential clients seeking proposals and interested in my services, which is a wonderful position to be in, so no complaints there.  Then throw in Vacation Bible School at our awesome church every evening after an already full day.  All this meant I was busy from early morning until bedtime, and then at bedtime I was on the laptop to review my assignments from my online class for the day.  I literally couldn’t squeeze another moment out of my day, not to mention I was thoroughly exhausted.

 I was able to maintain my job and service a couple of clients here and there, as well as try to maintain a household filled with three growing daughters, 3 cats, 7 ducks and a dog.  One of things that lacked my attention was one of those things that really only needed five minutes of my time each day.  What was that thing?  It was reviewing my household finances and budget.

Finally on Saturday morning, coffee in hand, it was time to totally focus my attention on updating my finances and see where our family’s cash flow stands.  I knew it wasn’t going to be as favorable as I hoped because of the lack of attention the past week.

 That led me to compile a list of five bad habits that keep you from financial peace.

Ignorance.  This was the first bad habit that used to really keep me off track when my finances were not in the best state in my life.  I used to swipe the debit card and ignore the balance thinking it would all work out.  I’ve got to live, right?  This is one of the worst habits you can hold on to.  Not only does it not work out, it digs a hole deeper and deeper and just makes things more complicated and cause more work and stress in the long run.

Laziness.  Yes, I do feel lazy at times; don’t we all?  This habit, in my mind, is somewhat related to #1.  When we are intentionally ignorant toward our budget, we know in the back of our minds that it’s not going to fix itself.  Knowing that, getting back on track is going to take more effort than if we had maintained our budget on a regular, consistent basis because we have to play catch up.  Therefore, we feel a lack of motivation or initiative to jump back in because of the extra effort that may be involved.  Hopefully this one doesn’t last too long.

Making Excuses.  Here are some good ones.  We have all been there at some point or another, and the excuses work for a while, but they do nothing to make our financial picture any better; only worse.

•When my finances are better and I am making more money, then I’ll develop a budget.
•I know my budget in my head, why do I need to write it down?
•It’s all good, I don’t need any help.
•I don’t have time.
•I don’t know what to do.

  • Busyness.  I think this is a typical state to be in for many busy households these days.  Kids’ activities, both parents working, and the hustle and bustle of everything around us all play a part in our busyness.   My budget definitely suffered this week.  It didn’t make or break my family, but I could have done better and felt better about it and had better cash flow.  A week filled with busyness serving others, I thoroughly enjoyed the fulfilment of helping others.  However, there comes a time when you need to set free some of those tasks in your life that keep you from living the life that you want to live.  I see a new task delegation list in my future!  Being financially free is definitely an aspect I want in my life.  This is an area I will work on consistently.

Lack of scheduling/planning.  Sometimes, along with the busyness we just plain forget to check in on our finances because it wasn’t written down somewhere.  A great way to remember this would be to schedule it on a task list (I use Google calendar/task list) or write it down on a big note next to a computer as a reminder to check in daily or weekly; whatever works for your family’s budget.  Another way to keep a close watch on your finances is to check in before doing any spending if you do not know what your current balance is in a particular expense fund.  This will give you an overall picture of what you have available to spend in all areas.

It takes time to develop the habits to create financial independence with a budget and debt payoff system.  With careful attention, adjusting, getting back up when we fall, and learning from our mistakes, it is a journey that someday will reap many rewards.  

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