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Financial Tracking

I know, this isn't a fun topic to talk about at the end of a long weekend... It's not so long ago that I was horrible with my finances. I was making good money but I didn't want to look at my bank balance or pull together a financial tracker, in my mind I was fine. Guess what, I was not fine. I really needed to listen to my parents and be aware of my finances. i have no real reason or explanation as to why I was so bad with my finances, I just was.

Finally, I got my head out of my ass and got my sh^t together. When I finally did I was so overwhelmed and didn't want to ask for help, I was scared of being judged by anyone that I was so "whatever" about my finances in the past. Thankfully, my mother knows me well and knew I was stressed about all of it, she actually just slyly gave me a Suze Orman book. She handed me Women & Money granted, everyone should know how to deal with their money this book was so beyond helpful...

In her book, she goes through her financial journey (surprise, she wasn't always a financial guru like she is now). The advice in her book is relevant to anyone. She breaks it down in a step by step process to be able to help you look at your finances in a really easy way to digest. At the end, there is what she calls a four month program to really ensure you are doing everything you can and should be doing. The book really didn't take much time to read and her advice is very easy to follow. A lot of the tips are things I internally told myself "duh thats so simple" but sometimes you really just need someone to spell it out for you.

Once I read that, I felt really motivated and able to start tackling my finances. The first thing I did was set up a Google sheet to write down all of my monthly expenses. I went through everything, my subscriptions, credit card bills, subscriptions & so on. I was able to look at a few things I was "wasting" money on to be able to shift into better habits. Writing everything down, really helps with where it's all going. Again, it sounds so simple but its worth it. The sheet I'm using has a built in budgeting tracker to see how much you are able to save so you can play out different scenarios if you want to.

The next thing i did was download the Albert app. Albert will analyze your spending habits and break them out into trends for you, thankfully thats not all it does. It lets you set savings goals and will auto save for you. By auto save I just mean you can set it so it will put aside $x however frequently you'd like. When I first started I had it put aside $25 every week. It can help negotiate lower bills, sends you real time alerts for your accounts. Don't worry, Albert is insanely secure and protected. Even though I can write down all my spending habits and look at my account every week. Albert helped me really rationalize and understand not only where I was spending my money but how I could save more money.

Anyway, finances are no joke. When you turn a blind eye to a not great situation, you can easily slip into an even worse one. If you slip up once or twice fine its explainable, but you just want to make sure your credit score is solid and want a security net if you do find yourself without a job (Suze recommends 8 months of bills set aside). I by no means am I perfect I still question myself and fall to buy things that maybe I shouldn't. But by:

  1. Reading Suze Ormans book Women & Money.

  2. Setting up a yearly tracker for finances on Google.

  3. Started using Albert

I've put myself in a much better situation to succeed and be financially independent and smart.

What are your best tips?

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