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As a financial journalist, I’ve heard tons of financial advice from dozens of financial experts.
Having these money conversations yield great tips, but three pieces of advice resonate the most.
The best pieces of advice are about your money mindset, automating your savings, and paying yourself first.
I have been a financial journalist for over a decade. I have heard tons of financial advice, but I’ve found that the best advice, and the insight that really resonates across the board, pertains to everyday money management.
Through my years of covering money, I have had the chance to speak with dozens of financial experts. These are the three best pieces of advice I have received:
1. Your money mindset will impact how you handle money
“The way that we handle money is a direct result of our money scripts and how we view money,” Tisdale told me. I thought about this and found that many people who struggle with money are afraid of money, or they think that money management is too hard. They don’t speak with their creditors when they are having trouble paying the bills and they view money as a source of stress and lack.
But the people who handle their money well view money as a tool. Financial issues are a temporary inconvenience, not a constant state of being. I even met someone years ago that was in a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which most people would see as a massive blow, but this gentleman saw it as a step in getting his life together.
Your mindset or your money script around money is a very real thing.
2. Automate your savings
Lynette Khalfani-Cox has been teaching women for years how to increase their savings and prepare for retirement. She stressed the importance of putting your savings on auto-pilot.
“This builds the “being consistent” part of saving. The only way to be successful with saving is to make it a habit,” Cox said. She continued to say that when you automate deposits into your savings account, you can set it and forget it. “It’s even better if you have it automatically deducted from your paycheck so that way you don’t even miss it.”
By saving money you are building yourself a financial safety net. Oftentimes people are in high-interest debt because they did not have savings to fall back on when the unexpected happened.
3. Pay yourself first
This piece of advice is the best piece of advice because it came from my Dad. After grad school and internships, I started my first full-time job. My Dad was on the phone with me for an hour at least, telling me that I need to pay myself first.
How? Of course, save your money, but in addition to that, he advised that I pay all of my household expenses first. He said to me, “there is no way that you should have a full-time job and your household bills aren’t paid and your refrigerator isn’t stocked, because you take care of those things first.”
To this day, my saving is on autopilot and the first thing I do when I get paid is pay my household bills (rent/mortgage, electric, internet, cell phone) and go to the grocery store.
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