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I'm Dalene Higgins, CEO / Financial Coach / GenXer. I'm an avid fiction reader as well!
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Welcome to a transformative exploration of your financial picture to gain clarity and begin developing a blueprint for success. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the essential process of “Getting Clear on Where You Are Now Financially To Find Success Moving Forward.” It’s a powerful journey, and by the end, you’ll not only understand your current financial standing but also pave the way for a prosperous future.
The first step on our journey is to conduct a complete review of your income and expenses. Think of it as an in-depth look at your financial imprint over the past year. For this review, you will be referring to any accounts where you have income and expenses going in and out, such as bank accounts, credit cards, Venmo, savings, etc.
Start your review with income.
Pay close attention to any fluctuations in your income. Do you have a set amount of months where it’s high and then another correlating set that’s low? Knowing when income will be lower and other times when it’s higher, will help you be better prepared in making financial decisions.
Did you receive bonuses, windfalls, or perhaps a well-deserved raise? Do you have a plan prior to seeing this additional income? For example, how did your raise impact your living? Do you know what specific addition it made in your life?
Spending is next.
Dive into the specifics of your spending. A few ideas to help you begin reviewing is be sure to examine subscriptions, memberships, dining out, and entertainment expenses. Look for patterns and trends, and identify areas where you excel and any that may need extra attention.
Now, let’s celebrate your victories. Reflect on the money habits and systems that worked exceptionally well for you. Did a particular budgeting method align seamlessly with your lifestyle? Perhaps auto bill pay and automatic savings became your financial allies, making money management a breeze.
Take pride in any financial milestones you achieved. Whether it’s mastering budgeting, reaching your savings goals, or making significant strides in paying off debt. Recognizing these wins is crucial and will help support your long-term financial journey.
As we celebrate our wins, it’s equally important to look for areas that may need improvement. Identify instances of overspending and if it was tied to a particular event that could help you plan better in the future. Also, what unexpected expenses caught you off guard? Same as with the overspending, how can you plan for these expenses in the future?
Pinpointing these areas of improvement isn’t about dwelling on mistakes; rather, it’s an opportunity for growth and learning. Challenges provide valuable lessons, and by acknowledging them, you empower yourself to make informed decisions moving forward. This step is pivotal in your journey toward financial resilience.
Congratulations on your journey to financial clarity!
By reviewing your income and expenses, celebrating your wins, and pinpointing areas of improvement, you’ve laid a solid foundation for success.
If you need additional guidance or support on this topic, details of each step and additional steps can be found on the Wealthy After 40 podcast, episode 037.
I have also created a free personal money assessment, the Financial Clarity Check Up, that provides you a spreadsheet, guided videos and assessment questions beyond the podcast episode.
Watch for part 2 next week to help increase your clarity with looking ahead.