So here you are, at a complete halt in your life. If you’re truly at rock bottom, there really is nothing quite like it. Bankruptcy, divorce, death in the family, or just plain bad luck, here you are basking in the glory of ruin. You might be dealing with loosing your home, cars, special belongings, businesses, or maybe you’ve lost everything. THIS, is my driving purpose for writing this blog. THERE IS SO MUCH PAIN WITH A FINANCIAL CRASH. It’s like the scene from final destination 2 when the log truck spills on the highway and you’re wondering when the nightmare’s going to end.
Now if you’re at the point of a Bankruptcy Discharge, or you finalized the divorce, I want to start by saying CONGRATULATIONS. You made it through the nausea, stress, and sleepless nights. For those of you who are still crash landing, hold on to any positive thought you can and keep on reading. This will apply to you soon enough!
The absolute first thing you need to do when you’re done crashing is to STOP STRESSING. Stress is literally a poison to your well being, both physically and mentally. You’ve done enough of that lately, it’s time to give your body a rest. You need to relax and know that everything WILL WORK OUT. After all, that’s what I’m writing this blog for. To save you from stress by sharing the hard lessons I already went through.
When you’ve dialed the stress levels down and are ready to take your first step toward recovery, this cannot be emphasized enough. YOUR POOR FINANCIAL DECISIONS DROVE YOU TO THIS POINT IN YOUR LIFE. You must absolutely OWN that basic principal. Understand that what you went through cannot be reversed, though I’m not asking you to beat yourself up about it. You will become much more happy and successful anyways, no need to get down about it. I’m asking you to understand that you have a fresh start, and you CANNOT do what you’ve done in the past. You must accept that you WERE dumb with money, and are NOW becoming educated. If you can’t fully embrace this idea, you simply cannot start your climb to financial freedom and early retirement.
So, at this point you’ve moved leaps and bounds. Way to go! You’re already less stressed, owned your mistakes, and are ready for forward momentum.
First, realize you are spending way too much if you spend more than your paycheck. We’re in the infancy stages here, no need to go overboard if you’re new to this. You DO need to save a portion of every paycheck though. Get used to the feeling of saving. I promise, the more you do it the better it will feel.
What if you don’t make enough money to cover your expenses? Then you need to trim the fat. If you have to cut the cell phone plan to a pay as you go, then cut it. If you have to eat ramen noodles instead of a Fettuccine Alfredo with garlic bread and shrimp cocktail, then eat ramen. If you have to sell your car and ride a tricycle with a toy horn and tassels to work, then DO IT. Am I making my point? This is something extremely important and I plan on covering this portion of your finances in a much more detailed post to come. For now, just make sure you’re saving any amount of money each paycheck.
This financial habit is very basic, but remember, you were dumb with your money before. This must become ingrained in you. Saving is from this point in your life, something you will do FOREVER. Daunting at first, but keep following along and you will become a master of your money. Like learning to wax on and wax off in Karate Kid, you need to save on instinct.