Knowing how you think about money can help you save more of it.

The way you think about your finances will determine whether you make money or whether you’re in debt. The fact is that so many people are in debt because they look at money the wrong way. Some people refuse to even talk about finances because they don’t want to face the hard truth.

If you’ve always struggled with finances it’s not because you’re stupid: 76 million Americans are in the same boat. It’s because you’re approaching it with the wrong mindset. In this guide, you’re going to learn how your thought processes affect your finances.

Your negative outlook

The most common approach to a big bill is that it’s impossible to afford. You’re so broke that you’ll never be able to get through the rest of the month. This negative thought can spiral out of control and before you know it that big bill has completely ruined your day. Most people wish they had more money to pay debts.

Perpetually wishing for more money isn’t going to make anything happen. You’ll go through this process every single month and the situation will never improve.

If you want to succeed with money, this should serve as a wakeup call. It should act as a trigger to review your finances and think about how you can slash spending and increase income. These are the actions that stop you from falling into debt and making your financial situation worse.

Change how you think of money

The way you think about money is determined by how you’ve lived your life. If your parents were always struggling with debt, the chances are you’ll either be terrified of spending or you’ll be dealing with debt yourself. Those who grew up with rich parents tend to have a more laissez-faire view towards money, so spending won’t be an issue to them, but cutting their expenditures will.

The three main consequences of thinking about money the wrong way are lower total net worth, lower income, and higher revolving credit card debt.

So how do you go about changing your mindset?

If you’re constantly worried about running out of money as a retiree, write down this negative thought. Then replace it with a positive one. Write down some positive thoughts about money and look on the bright side. This is not about delusion; it’s about looking at the silver lining.

The next time you think about how you’re struggling with debt, learn to review your finances and look at your plan to get out of debt. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference a simple action like this can make.

What are the keys to financial success?

Just because you’ve had finance problems in the past, doesn’t mean the future has to be just as bleak. Start fresh and begin managing and maintaining a positive mindset about money.

The first step is to get rid of any feelings of guilt or shame. This is most common in people who have made bad financial decisions. These decisions could have even taken them into bankruptcy. You’re never going to obtain a debt free lifestyle if you continue to hold onto these natural feelings. Punishing yourself isn’t going to make a difference.

The next step is to begin thinking about how you’re going to be successful going forward. You need to motivate yourself to do better. It all starts with crafting some money goals. You may want to pay off your creditors or you might want to visit that dream vacation destination.

Goals are essential for keeping you motivated during difficult periods. Without them you’ll lose interest and fall back into bad habits.

You also have to consider whether bad influences are enabling you. Family and friends who’re also negative about money will make you feel the same way. You shouldn’t necessarily remove them from your life, but you should avoid talking about money with them. If they start talking about money, you should politely cut the conversation.

Last word – it’s a long-term goal

Keep in mind that this isn’t something you can manage in a matter of days or weeks. Changing the way you think, can take months to achieve. Keep working at it and eventually you’ll have no problem saving better for college or paying off your mortgage.

But the time to start is now. Too many people bury their heads in the sand and hope the problem will go away. Be proactive in the way you manage money and you’ll get a better long-term outcome.

How will you manage your finances today?

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Article last modified on June 20, 2017. Published by Debt.com, LLC .