Archive for January 2011

Just Make It This Week

Many people who have been living paycheck-to-paycheck are overwhelmed by the situation.   They may not have the financial knowledge to get out of the horrible financial spiral OR even if they do have the knowledge, they are intimidated as to where to even get started.

Just make it this week.

Every journey begins with a first step.   Maybe what you need is to set a goal of making it ONE WEEK.

Just ONE WEEK of …

You CAN do this.   And it starts with making it just this week.

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Protect Your Financial Future – Establish Strong Savings

One of the most important things that Jenn and I did to gain financial freedom was to begin thinking about and planning for the future.

It was a recognition of these basic FACTS:

  1. The future is coming.
  2. Life will happen.
  3. It will cost money

Based on these facts, we could choose 1 of 2 responses:

  1. Have zero money saved and use debt to pay for those life events OR
  2. Save money in advance and use that money to pay for the life events

Prior to December 2, 2002, we chose Option #1.   Every single time the car broke down or needed tires, we used debt to pay for it.   When we had to go to the doctor, we financed it.   Vacations?   All of them went on the credit card.   Christmas – all of that went on the credit card – with the excuse that we would use our tax refund to pay it off.   Never happened.

Option #1 is rife with stress, frustration, and anxiety.   Always fearing the next big calamity.   I am so glad that we have chosen Option #2 for the past 8+ years.

GOAL: Save at least $2,500 in a basic emergency fund.

EXTENDED GOAL:   Save at least $10,000 in a fully-funded emergency fund.

Have YOU protected your financial future?   Are you preparing for it by saving?   Share your story in the commments!

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IHHE RANT: Don’t Do As I Do. Do As I Say!

Everyone has met that one person who tells everyone how they should do something or how they should live their lives, but then that same individual goes out and ignores all of their own teaching!

It’s the PE Teacher who is completely out of shape.   It’s the messy parent telling their kid to clean their room.   It’s the person who tells their family to stop their crazy spending even when they themselves are so broke that when they go to Kentucky Fried Chicken, they have to lick other people’s fingers!

It’s the proverbial hypocrite.   Of course, we all have been a hypocrite at one point in time of our life or another, but I’m talking about consistently making the statement, “Don’t do as I do.   Do as I say!”

  • Americans You want the country to have a   balanced budget?   You want the National Debt to stop rising?   IT STARTS BY LIVING IT IN YOUR OWN LIFE!
  • Parents You want your children to prosper in life and manage their money well?   IT STARTS BY LIVING THE PRINCIPLES IN YOUR OWN LIFE!
  • Business Owners You want your business to prosper?   You want your employees to manage the business money well?   IT STARTS BY DOING THE SAME IN YOUR OWN LIFE!

I know I have more than enough times in my life where I have not lived out everything I say I value, but man I am SO GRATEFUL that my bride and I got on the same page financially and took the necessary (and tough) steps to achieve financial freedom.

And here’s the GREAT NEWS – You CAN do it too!   That’s why I’ve written all of the books and studies.   It’s why I’ve written like crazy on this website for the past five years.   It’s why we travel and teach over 50,000 people each year.   However we can help you, we want to do it!

How about making 2011 the year of, “Do as I do. Because doing so set me free!

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I’m Paying What?!?!

WARNING:   Participating in the below activity can lead to increased blood pressure, frustration, and possibly anger.

Have you ever given much attention to the deductions from your paycheck?

Here’s what I know.   If you don’t personally pay the bill and an expense is paid out of your paycheck before you ever receive it, chances are REALLY HIGH that you will be shocked to discover how much you are really paying!

I challenge you to pull up your paystub from the last paycheck you received in December 2010 and look at how much has been taken out BEFORE you ever received the check.

How much did you pay last year for:

  • Federal Income Tax
  • Social Security Tax
  • Medicare Tax
  • State Tax
  • Local Tax
  • Insurance Premiums

Now take those amounts and divide them by how much you were paid last year.   What percent of your pay was taken out to pay for taxes and insurance?   After you have taken your heart medicine, would you mind sharing your percentage in the comments?

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