3 Steps to Financial Success: Playing By The Rules – A Treadmill To Debt

Know this!

  • Today’s economics and demographics are different from even a decade ago, your approach to saving and investing must reflect that.
  • Job and benefits security is fast becoming extinct. You mistake responsibility for planning for your future.
  • Americans are living longer, so your money has to last longer.

Check always – separate financial fact from fiction

  • financial freedom wake-up call
  • financial freedom personal check-up
  • 21st century investing and savings
  • debt-free retirement
  • discern financial fact or fiction

Reality check

  • Look at every purchase you make now and ask yourself, “Is this a need or a want?”
  • Discover if your life or marriage is being affected by financial stress. If so, make a plan to eliminate stress.
  • Tune out the daily, weekly, and monthly “latest” gyration of the stock market and the analysis along with it. If you’ve done your homework and save and invested thoughtfully, these numbers have little day-to-day effect on your long-term financial goals.

Act upon

  • Your success or failure to achieve what truly matters to you is up to you. It’s your choice, not the choice of your financial advisor, your parents, your neighbors of employer.
  • Debt is not OK – we somehow have been conditioned to believe that debt is a normal part of life. Consumer credit outstanding totaled nearly $2.8 trillion as of November 2012, according to the U.S. Federal Reserve ( ).
  • Debt is absolutely not cool in the new financial reality.

The private control of credit is the modern form of slavery

Crippling debt is not a necessary part of living the life of your dreams. It is, instead, a road to financial slavery. Debt should not own you; you should control your own life, and the actions you take should help you achieve your goals.

Do you spend more money than you earn? Are you tired of living from pay check to pay check? Do you make more withdrawals than deposits to your savings account? Are all of your credit cards maxed out?

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you’re most likely in debt. Getting out of debt is not an easy process to go through. It takes strong commitment, discipline and will power. No matter who you ask, book or article you may read, the first thing you will learn in order to get out of debt is to create a budget. Having a budget is the single most important step to get out of debt. A budget will show you exactly where you stand with your finances.

Most people have money going out in so many directions or places that it’s hard to keep track of how much is actually being brought home every month, if any at all. A budget will help to organize your spending. Budgets give the opportunity to see in black and white where your money is going. Although creating a budget may seem daunting, it’s scarier to go on spending without one.

Thanks to the Federal Reserve’s zero interest rate policy, living off of fixed income investments doesn’t seem likely… or even possible… anymore.

As any retiree is now all too aware, finding safe income has become a daunting challenge.