There is nothing more haunting then dwelling on the bad decisions we have made in our lives. For one reason or another our brain tends to drift positive or negative, and more often than not most of us tend to dwell on the things that haven’t gone well versus the things that have gone well. As you enjoy another Christmas, this could be a fantastic opportunity to consider financial decisions that have gone wrong or prevented you from going forward, and make the necessary adjustments to improve your financial future. Here are my top 10 from Santa’s naughty list.
- Investing In Things You Don’t Understand- You’ve done it before, now stop it. If you can’t explain it, don’t bother putting your money it.
- Investing In A Friends Business- If you aren’t running it or at least have some form of power, don’t put money in it. 9 out of 10 times, you’ll lose all of your money.
- Buying Too Large A Home- Count how many rooms in your current home you don’t use right now. If it was more than one, you’ve made a mistake.
- Buying A New Car- Best way to lose your money quickly, and not even to mention the upkeep when the car is $50,000 or above. Stick to a two year old car.
- Forgetting To Increase Savings- When you make more money, unless you put it away automatically, the spending demons will get it. Have some sort of money ACH or Bank-o-Matic set up each month. Get it out of your hands as fast as it came in so you’re not tempted.
- Set Vacation Budgets- Every vacation doesn’t have to be at a 4-star or 5-star hotel. A few nice memories of vacations are important, but if you are spending $10,000 or more a year on vacations there might be a problem.
- Trusting Your Company- Large companies have a heart smaller than the Grinch. Make sure you have alternative plans set up at all times just in case you need to exit stage left. (Thanks to RUSH for that one!)
- Having Too Much In Company Stock- Ask anybody who saw the technology bubble in 2000 or what about the market as a whole in 2008? People have a really short memory. Make sure to get some of your cash off the table every year.
- Sticking With The Wrong Partner- You must get synced up financially as a family. Spender vs. Saver relationships are difficult for making progress unless you have a plan. If you are both Spenders, then getting a financial coach will be the best investment you have ever made. You must work as a team to accomplish your goals.
- DEBT (PERIOD)!- Do you want a lump of coal in your stocking? How about two tons of bricks sitting on your shoulders? Because this is what debt will feel like. I know most financial advisors will say that your money can do better than your debt, but factor in how debt makes you feel emotionally. I love having no debt!
To get yourself fiscally fit here in 2014, you do have to revisit the financial ghosts of Christmas past. Don’t be embarrassed or ashamed because we have all made financial mistakes. Just don’t make them twice! Use these ten simple tips to help guide you to having a great financial 2014.
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