Is it just me, or is anyone else tired of being broke?
Paydays are just a myth, because after I take care of bills, it is like it NEVER happened....
When my paycheck was chump change (more like minimum wage); my first thought was that I needed more money in order to have more. But then I started a position that doubled my previous salary, in addition to working a part time job,and my pockets still carried lint in them. Of course me being the millennial that I am, I did what we all do…..start to look at other positions that paid more.
It was in that moment that I stopped myself and asked a valuable question “Why am I always broke?” It wasn’t as if I was out here wearing Red Bottoms and Gucci belts, in reality it didn’t feel that I was spending money on much. And how could I dare think about building a savings account, if I didn't have any money to put in it?
I had to figure it out, because clearly making more money wasn’t going to fix this problem until I got to the root of it.
Change of mindset
Have you ever talked so much that everyone stopped listening? (I talk A LOT so this just may be my testimony.....). The hour and thirty minute story that you just told about that one time in band camp, went in one ear and out the other......
Well, when we talk to ourselves believe it or not our subconscious keeps an attentive ear. It soaks up everything that you say about yourself “I can’t save,” “I never have any money,” “I’m always going to be broke.” Though these sayings don’t seem as if they mean much, but in reality our subconscious takes heed and plays out on everything we just said.
In January I added financial books to my reading routine. I just knew that by adding this it would give me a blueprint on how to start making it rain.
BRUH, I was sooooo wrong! By the time I was 3 books in and started to read the Holy Grail of all money books “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill, one thing stuck out. In order to receive more money, I first had to change the mindset that I had about money (why do the most complicated things have simple solutions....go figure).
If you think that you can’t, you won’t; if you think that you are unable to save, you won’t; and if you say you never have any money, you never will! To be honest, a lot of these messages we grow up hearing, so it becomes natural for us to imitate them. Until there is a shift within the mindset get familiar with being broke.
Needs versus Wants
Some may not be as familiar with this, but a NEED and a WANT are two different things. A need is something that you cannot exist without; while a want is something to fulfill a desire.
One day I was in Hobby Lobby gathering supplies for a Pinterest project that I was working on. After I gathered what I went to the store for, I saw a sales table with elephants! I swear a light beamed on it, that seemed to come straight from heaven.
My eyes lit up as a little kid in Toys R Us, I started to pick them all up. The "Intuitive One" (my line name) side of me hit a stroll just thinking about how I was going to grow my elephant collection.
"I NEED this one, this one, oooooh that one too, this one will look so cute on my bookshelf. "
Then my homie Darrill stopped me “Jas you don’t need any of these, you just want them right now.”
Of course I sat there and pleaded my case of why I needed them in my life before I even budged to place any of them back. But he was right; I didn’t need them, I have tons and tons of elephants at my mama and my house. If I put them back, I was still going to live to see another day and keep $50 in my pocket as well.
Many of the things that we purchase we can....... A) do without or B) already have the same thing almost exactly like it. A tear begins to form every time I look at my closet and see at least 5 pairs of Jordan’s that are the exact same shoe but with just a little difference in color, that I spent way too much money on. If its close enough, trust that you can do without and your broke days will soon be behind you.
In life, nothing great is obtained without a little discipline; making a commitment and following it through all the way to the very end. After I saw how I was wasting all of my money on food and drinks, I created a budget. This was very simple, nothing too extensive, but I wanted to create diameters on what I wanted to save and have left over.
I created an account on Mint.com; the program links your banking accounts, so it tracks money that is spent. Then places it in categories and shows how much you have left within that particular budget.
Stay in the green is a simple rule to live by, until you have meal prep food in the refrigerator and Chick fi la calls your name (and y'all KNOW I love me some Chick fi la!). But I had to practice discipline and remember that it would take some sacrifice not to be broke any longer.
I then began to be discipline with saving. I had to get into the habit of saving 10% of my check as soon as it hit; and THEN spend whatever I had left, instead of the other way around. Before I would go out to eat, buy a bottle of wine, then get LIT Uptown, and look at my account like “well I guess I will try to save next week.”
Now I am building a savings and saying “I didn’t need that bottle anyway.” Discipline does not only allow me to build a savings, but keep money in it as well. It does not help to save if I dip into it every other day.
But what took a TON of discipline, was breaking bad habits. My bad habit was “Chick fi la Fridays” which was costing me close to $100 a month. When I started to meal prep Fridays became my cheat day, the one day of the week that I could eat whatever I wanted. By now you know me and Chick fi la have this love affair going on, I would go there for breakfast, lunch, and most of the time dinner as well (stop judging me.....this is a judge free zone....).
After a while it became a habit that I fell into. I must admit it took a lot of discipline to break this habit, but it was one of the main reasons that I was broke all the time. Instead, I made breakfast at home, would go to Chick fi la at lunch, and cook dinner. I was able to break a habit that was pretty much pointless and saved me a lot of money in the meantime. So if you say you’re going to do it follow it through all the way until the end.
Nobody wants to be broke ALL the time, but our actions scream that we do. Making more money is nice, but if it is not managed just go ahead and throw it out the window. When we shift our mindset, know our true needs, and create discipline with finances it is possible to create more with what you have. I never thought that I would’ve developed a cushioned savings account and not scrape for bones after paychecks within just one year. The ability to better manage my money has given me a sense of power to ask for what I want, and the feeling that I don't have to say yes just to have money in the bank (more hours, more jobs....)
It is an awesome feeling to have funds to give back to the church and other great causes and organizations; before I couldn’t even imagine in fear that a bill might not get paid. It’s possible, you can do so much more with what you have once you stop telling yourself that you can’t. Get over the fear that you are unable to obtain more. You can do it; I know that it is inside of you!