Moving Forward Financially: Part 2

This post is part of the Fearless Living Series, whose posts serve to spotlight areas of your life where fear may be holding you back and to motivate you to find a plan to use in squelching that fear. As long as fear hinders or motivates you, Taking Care Of You will not be a priority in your life.

As Leo Babauta of Zen Habits said so well, "When you take action on a problem, it’s not so bad — it’s just a series of steps you need to take to solve the problem...The plan will kill the fear. It is taking something that is scary and unknown, and turning it into something concrete, solvable, doable."

Fear is such a life drainer. Do not give your power over to fear. Instead, use that fear as a catalyst to prompt you into action. Are you ready to take your power back and experience Taking Care Of You through fearless living?

I used to think of my employment as having to continually earn more money for me so I could spend more money. About the time that I began moving forward financially in my life, my awareness had also recently shifted. Now what I believe is that there is more to it than just that alone. I also am choosing what to spend my life energy on.

From Your Money or Your Life: Money is something we choose to trade our life energy for. Our life energy is our allotment of time here on earth, the hours of precious life available to us. When we go to our jobs we are trading our life energy for money. [...]

Our life energy is more real in our actual experience than money. You could even say money equals life energy. So, while money has no intrinsic reality, our life energy does — at least to us. It’s tangible, and it’s finite. Life energy is all we have. It is precious because it is limited and irretrievable and because our choices about how we use it express the meaning and purpose of our time here on Earth.

I've settled in to work for a non-profit company that is generally balanced between income, responsibilities and its impact on my own personal life. I'm working on clearing away the debt created from choosing to allow another to control my finances. I've realized that I feel secure when there is money in the bank that is just there to cover emergencies and that is there to fund my needs in the future (my first car without a car payment, hopefully!) My financial strategy has also moved past the day-to-day in regards to planning and saving for retirement.

In the first Moving Forward Financially post, your top priority was to take the time to appreciate who you were in the past, realize that the choices you made were the best you could do at the time and forgive yourself. This step is to sweep aside all of that past stuff and prepare yourself for moving forward.
When it comes to your finances, there is no looking back at the job choices you've made, the money you've spent, etc. It's all past tense; there isn't anything you can do to change them. What you do have the ability to change is from today going forward.

At the end of the post, your 'assignment' was to use this new 'clean slate' feeling to decide on how you wished to proceed and decide on your plan for what comes next financially. Specifically, to do your research and look at the numerous methods for acquiring, saving and spending money so that you could find the financial strategy that does work for you---that motivates you, utilizes your strengths, does not work against you, etc.--and move forward on it!

If you still haven't yet poked around the internet a bit and tried to develop your own financial strategy, below are a few links that have helped me. Maybe they will give you the inspiration you need for moving forward.

My strategy is best said by J.D. Roth of Get Rich Slowly. Here it is.

It’s my belief that a strong personal economy is still built on fundamentals such as these:

  • Clear financial goals
  • An adequate emergency fund
  • Limited use of debt
  • The practice of thrift
  • Smart investing for the future
"If you don't have any financial objectives or goals, you'll likely spend most of your life aimlessly earning and spending and making little traction in the process", says Money Saving Mom Crystal Paine.

The following from Trent Hamm at The Simple Dollar is a 2-for-1 covering creating your own small emergency fund and eliminating/avoiding high interest debt. Be sure to follow the links in the post too!

Save more money by doing less using The Two-Headed Savings Approach by Ramit Sethi.

It may feel like you're throwing your money away but keep investing says Generation X Finance.

In conclusion, I leave you with Your Money: The Rules from It's Your Money! and Financial Serenity--The Missing Ingredient by Neal Frankle.

Until next time...Take Care Of You!

Photo Credit: Fear In The Eye
Photo Credit: Moving On Up
Photo Credit: Thinking About Money

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