How to Stop Procrastinating Your Finances
Procrastination. It has been your 'frienemy' for years. There has been many times you've said to yourself "This year, I'm going to open up a 401k and then put a lot of money in there so that I'll be a millionaire when I get to retirement age." Then, you see something else that you really
needed wanted (i.e. going out to dinner a lot) and then think to yourself, "Well, I can deal with it tomorrow." Does this ring a bell? Take a look at these must-know tips of how to stop procrastinating your finances.
There are steps that can help you beat procrastination. I have started taking these steps and I can't believe they are starting to work (it is absolutely amazing that things can actually work when you actually start them.)!
Crawl Before You Walk
In the past, I have done what psychologists call the "All-or-Nothing" Syndrome (as seen in the first paragraph) and have subsequently failed miserably. In the framework of personal finance, "I'm going to have a million dollars or nothing at all". This is the absolute worst (in my opinion) financial reasoning you can make. You are just setting yourself up for failure (like I have up until this point). After failing time and time again of doing the same thing, I had an 'ah-ha' moment about that quote from Albert Einstein,
"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results."
That simple yet powerful statement resonated with me. I then decided I needed to go back to the drawing board and not only do it differently but the exact opposite of what I had been doing. Start small, just like I did when I finally lost 5 pounds and kept it off!! It's is a completely different subject but the process is still the same.
Let's take investing for instance. I absolutely freeze when it comes to investing. I'm not sure about what to invest in, I don't want to spend hours trying to figure out what to invest in and most importantly I don't have a bunch of money to spend. So I've done a little bit of research and opened up an account with Acorns. If you sign up you get instantly get $5(and it puts $5 in mine too...we can make money together!!)! It really is cool due to the fact that
A. You don't have to have a lot of money in order to start investing
B. You don't have to know anything about investing. They do it for you and creates passive income for you!
C. Your money is FINALLY starting to work for you!
I'm all about it!
Devil's in the Details
In addition to thinking small, having very specific and detailed goals are incredibly powerful. So, I'm going to have a confession moment. I LOVE going out to eat. I love it so much I have gone out to eat on average of 5-10 times a week in the past. Let's say that I stop going out to eat 3 times a week and it costs $7 each time I go out (realistically it more but just for this exercise it's $7).
$7 saved per meal x 3 times per week = $1000 in a year!!!!!!!!!
*Jaw on the floor* That's a lot of money! Now let's take it a step further and say that over a span of a year your investment portfolio increased by 10%.
$1000 x 1.10=$1,100
Let's look at Scenario A (Eating Out) Vs. Scenario B (Not Eating out)
[col-md-6] Scenario A
I ate out 3x a Week.
I have zero dollars to show for it at the end of the year! [/col-md-6] [col-md-6] Scenario B
I ate at home 3 x a week.
I have $1,100 to show for it at the end of the year! [/col-md-6]
All in all, these steps have been relatively painless and have produced results. Even though these are minimal efforts, they are giving me the courage to try more and go for bigger because I have an increased level of confidence because I have accomplished something! So, that means that you should too! I hope this has been encouraging as it as been for me. Let me know what small financial step that you have taken, in the comments below! I so want to hear them, you never know they may help someone else out!