My problem lies in reconciling my gross habits with my net income. -Errol Flynn
People are often confused with financial planning – they mix up three basic fundamental ideas, or combine them and create a skewed, warped version that makes financial planning a complicated ordeal. Financial success is meeting our plans and goals and reaching a certain milestone in our expectations of finance:
Security is reaching that point with your finances that you are comfortable with your money and savings that will cover your needs and your wants.
Wealth is having an abundance of money, investments, and resources. A fundamental truth is that in order to build wealth you must spend less than you earn. You must hold off on your current standard of living to reach a higher standard of living.
Happiness goes beyond making more money. It’s about being in a good position of your finances and bills – you are on the way of reaching your goals with well-established, healthy financial goals.
Of course, it seems every way we turn we encounter impediments to our financial success. The second your of legal credit-bearing age the offers start. When you reach college campuses you’re surrounded by companies wanting you to sign with them for credit card offers, loans for an over-priced computer, for a new car you don’t need. Money is thrown at the 18+ crowd by telling them how important it is to build credit, and also to give the appearance that you have wealth – get your Abercrombie and Fitch credit cards and dress for success! Give that illusion of richness by driving a brand new Acura! It doesn’t matter that you’re drowning in debt… does it?
OF COURSE IT DOES! It’s important that you establish your financial foundation – use your current and regular income to provide your basic lifestyle and savings. Once you’ve got your foundation, you can continue on your financial journey (where we will continue down the road).