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this March I spent days and hours organizing my taxes. If you are those who wait for the last minute to collect the data for the tax filing, you can relate to that!

It was HELL ! I was miserable. making myself doing all this work, trying to figure out what did the heck I spent the money on…

Anyhow, at that point I made a promise to myself to NEVER DO IT AGAIN!

Since then, I have been much more organized and entering my data on a weekly and monthly base.

I just received a newsletter from Terry Matzkin, CLU, ChFC, Financial Advisor and I though it was a great article to help you (if you need to get your finance in order), to get back on your fit!

Start Budgeting By Terry Matzkin, CLU, ChFC

Almost no one enjoys the process of analyzing and budgeting expenditures, but inefficient and wasted expenditures can be major impediments to accomplishing your financial goals. It is difficult to manage your money if you don’t know how much you have or where it is going. Consider these steps when developing your budget:

1. Identify how you are spending your income. Review an annual period so you determine regular monthly expenses as well as irregular, periodic expenses, such as insurance premiums, tuition, and gifts. Much of the information can be found by examining canceled checks, credit card receipts, and tax returns. Total expenses in categories that make sense for your lifestyle. If you can’t account for more than 5% of your income, take a closer look at your cash purchases. Keep a journal tracking every penny you spend for at least a month.

2. Evaluate your expenditures. If you find it tough to find money to save, critically review your expenditures. Consider these tips:

Find ways to save at least 10% of your income. Almost all expenditure categories offer potential for savings. With essential expenses with fixed amounts, such as your mortgage, taxes, and insurance, you may be able to refinance your mortgage, find strategies to help reduce taxes, or comparison shop your insurance to reduce premiums. Essential expenses that vary in amount, such as food, medical care, and utilities, can usually be reduced by altering your spending or living habits. For instance, you can actively shop for food with coupons, exercise to get in better health, or put energy saving light bulbs through your house. Discretionary expenses, such as entertainment, dining out, clothing, travel, and charitable contributions, typically offer the most potential for spending reductions. Dining out four times a week? Reduce it to two, go to less expensive restaurants, and save the difference.

Limit the use of your credit cards, especially if you’re not paying the balance in full every month. Not only do credit card balances carry high interest charges, but credit cards tend to encourage impulse spending. Use cash or a debit card, which automatically deducts purchases from your bank account.

Resolve not to purchase impulse items or items over a certain dollar amount on your first shopping trip. Go home, think about it for a couple days, and then go back to purchase the item. Often, you’ll decide you don’t really need it.

Delay the purchase of large items. For example, instead of purchasing a new car every two or three years, keep your car for four or five years.

If you’re really serious about reducing expenses, consider moving to a less expensive house. Not only will you reduce your mortgage payment, but you will save on other costs, such as property taxes, insurance, and utilities.

3. Prepare a budget to guide future spending. You may want to start by setting a budget for a couple months, tracking your expenses closely over that time period. You can then fine tune your budget for an annual period. Some tips to consider when preparing your budget include:

Don’t include income in your budget that is uncertain, such as year-end bonuses, tax refunds, or gains on investments. When you receive that money, just put it aside for saving.

Set up enough expenditure categories to give you a good feel for your spending patterns, but not so many that it becomes difficult and time consuming to monitor your progress.

Make your budget flexible enough to handle unforeseen expenditures. Nothing goes exactly as planned, and your budget should be able to deal with emergencies. Be sure to include large, periodic expenditures, such as insurance premiums or tuition.

Don’t be so rigid that your family is afraid to spend any money. Everyone in the family should have a reasonable allowance that can be spent without accounting for it.

Find ways to make the savings component of your budget happen automatically. Get the money out of your bank account and into an investment account before you have a chance to spend it.

The money you have available for saving is a direct result of your spending habits. Use a budget to control your spending so you can maximize your savings.

When I moved to the US, along with moving came the decision to make acareer change.
Making a career was a BIG step for me. With the pathfinder how to choosemy career for a life time satisfaction, came the understanding that Igave up my financial freedom.
I used to earn equal salary to my husband, and giving that up was VERYHARD to swallow.
You know how you feel out of control when you don’t have your own money?when you have no financial freedom? That was HARD for me. It was as if Ilost my independence in a way. Having my own income always made me feelthat I have a choice!
I could choose what to buy, what to invest in, but really, mostimportant I felt equal. I had MONEY, and as they say “who has the money,has the last word”.
Many woman I know do not have the financial freedom they want, and thatkeeps them in places they would left if they had the financial freedom,they tend to stay in relationships that are not healthy for them becausethey have no choice.
Since I left my job, I struggled to accept the fact that I had nofinancial freedom for myself – I was dependent.
Think about yourself – would you live differently if you had the moneyand the financial freedom? What would you do? How would you feel? Howwould it affect your relationships with your loved ones? What can you doMORE?
I made the decision to become financially free, and take control of mylife, and have the personal freedom and the financial freedom to choosethe life I WANT, to be able to provide better life to my children andmake different choices. When money is not the issue, you are powerful tomake choice that is good for you that are good for your life!
I am here to tell you, that as a woman, you life will change when youdecide to become financially free. It might take some time, but you willbe FREE as a bird to live by your own values with out compromising youvalues, areas of happiness and most of all – yourself.
How do you create this financial freedom?
There are so many ways to do that and YOU need to feel good about yourchoice.
I chose the opportunity to work from home, have my own home basebusiness that allows me to be with my kids, help people and make money!
So, how can you become financially free? How can you have the financialfreedom you want?

I just came across this ebook and thought I would share.

I have not read it all, but it looks interesting enough and I’m sure I can learn something new from it.

Check it out,;=11460

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