Be clever with money and do what makes you happy
That’s because I have realised that, as well as being able to make us miserable, money can let each and every person do what makes them happy.
“They” say that money isn’t everything. That money isn’t important. It’s the root of all evil. Or that money only causes problems and misery.
Don’t believe a word of it!
Money is amazing.
Yes, it can cause misery, but it’s not the actual money that is causing the misery, it’s you. Yep, that’s right. It IS NOT THE MONEY. It is YOU.
If you learn how to use money to it’s full advantage, then you are always able to do what makes you happy. There are some simple things that you can do to be more savvy with your money, such as making good money saving decisions, spending less money on random crap, and setting financial goals.
For me to be happy, money must do only 3 things. Let me retire early from teaching, financially support our 3 kids through further education and give me lots of fun and adventures! Anything else doesn’t matter much to me. I am not bothered that my car is 10 years’ old. The fact that one of my sofas has been clawed by the bloody cat, just makes it more homely. I don’t care that I only have one pair of blue skinny jeans. (I used to think I needed to have at least 5!) None of that bothers me one bit.
Why does it make a difference?
By not spending money on these things, I CAN spend money on the things that matter the most to me. I CAN put money away, so I can retire from teaching at 55. I DO invest money every month, to help our 3 kids through further education. Putting 3 kids through Uni in a 6 year period is still a wee bit scary though! However, it’s a hell of a lot less scary, than if I had nothing saved.
How does this benefit me?
I am not worrying about our long term security.
I know that we can help our kids through Uni, though not to the extent that I had originally hoped (damn those pesky twins! Joking, S & K, you know I wouldn’t change it for the world!)
I know that we can afford to retire completely at 57 and 62, and we are still working towards retirement at 55 and 60. I am confident that we WILL do it, we just aren’t quite there yet.
This lets me feel calm, confident and in control, allowing me to enjoy the present, without that nagging doubt of the future hanging over me.
But what about you?
What would make you happy? Would you like to reduce your working hours? Change your job completely? Give your children a great start in life? Have more amazing holidays? What about retiring early? Whatever it is you want, be sure that you CAN make it happen!
I am not the only one
Many of my fellow UK Money Bloggers see that making good money decisions gives them power and enhancing their lives. Could any of these ideas can help you to have freedom, choice and control over YOUR life too?
Sara from the wonderful Debt Camel (if you have any debt, this has to be your number one port of call!) says “I’ve always been a saver. Having money gives you options and control over your life. You’re not at the mercy of private landlords, you can walk out of a job if it goes wrong or you just need a change.” She is also a staunch advocate of having some money stashed away for those unexpected expenses “Even a few hundred pounds in an emergency fund can reduce the stress of small unexpected bills.”
Lylia Rose blog tells the story of Victoria’s journey. She says “I was once in debt crisis and never want to be in that situation again. Now I track all our income and expenditure to stay on top of our finances. We also have ‘outgoing’ to our savings each month, allowing us to build our own emergency fund. We are overpaying our mortgage which takes 7 years off our mortgage. We’ll be mortgage free by 50 if we continue like this (and hopefully a lot sooner if we increase the payments again) We can then put what would have been our mortgage money into savings for a lovely retirement fund and lots of travelling”
Don’t let debt rob you of happiness
Maria paid off £100,000 of consumer debt in three years. “To achieve that, I had to develop and implement a money management system for the family and transform our habits. People who follow The Money Principle know that I believe that frugality goes far but increasing your cash flow goes so much further. ” Maria’s quality of life was improved by paying off debt and she “no longer feels guilty and stressed when spending on unique experiences.” Maria, by paying off debt, has created her own happiness.
Money can let you do what makes you happy
Learning about money, and about how to make great money decisions is fun! It’s enlightening, empowering and gives you a great sense of satisfaction.
Blogger Michelle from Time and Pence says “My husband and I have always tried to make good financial decisions such as never having credit cards, saving up for things we want to buy and saving on groceries so we can spend more on the fun things in life. The best financial choice we have ever made has to be making as many overpayments as we could on our mortgage. Making extra money from home has helped us to achieve this. We only have 2 months left to pay off our mortgage, 7 years early and that is so exciting!”
Michael, from Foxy Monkey, has a simple strategy “We live according to these principles: Spend less than we earn, avoid debt and invest the surplus. This helped us to realise we shouldn’t buy an overpriced flat in London last year and created a nice growing nest egg over the last few years. That led to a dream slowly becoming a reality – financial independence”
Your future happiness
Money Saving Girl Martyna has “always been saving even when I was on as low salary as £13,000″, proving that you don’t need to be making a fortune to be able to set something aside. She is a savvy shopper who doesn’t “want to pay more for things which you don’t have to overpay!” She uses the savings made by shopping wisely to invest in her future. “We are aiming to live comfortably in the future, by investing in properties now, rather than expecting huge pensions from our companies. However having said that my company pension scheme is also generous and as high as 9% so I feel good about my financial situation now and hope it won’t change in the future.
Pete from Household Money Saving is “far more careful with what I spend now so I can look at retiring earlier.” Like many of us, Pete says “the retirement age is 68 for me, but who knows if it will be even later. My job can be physically demanding, and I’m sure I won’t be able to do it as I get older.” Rather than just worrying about it, and hoping for the best, Pete is sensible enough to be taking action now and hopes “to have enough saved up by 60 so I can retire, or at least lower my hours drastically.”
Are you retirement ready?
With the retirement age continually rising, the subject of retirement is something that we should all be concerned about. Trish realised that her and her husband weren’t well prepared for retirement. She says “with retirement due in 7 years for my husband and 9 years for me, it was time to act.” They did this by taking a good, hard look at their finances. “We cut our spend, though we still had a nice holiday each year. We totally revamped our savings plan, putting as much as we could in ISAs and pensions each year (hugely benefiting from the tax relief).”
Through taking action to make it happen, they were both able to retire early. Trish says one surprising benefit of cutting back and changing their finances was that “once we realised we really didn’t need much, early retirement became a realistic option.”
I have found writing this post so uplifting and inspiring and I hope that you feel that way about it too.
Money can allow you to do what makes you happy, BUT only if you help it along the way, by taking inspired action.
I am here to help you every step of the way, through my blog posts and free information.
My Change Your Money Story FREE download will help you to start to:
- ANSWER the 3 MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS
- be EXCITED about how your future could look
- feel CONFIDENT and CALM about money
- feel EMPOWERED about taking control
- know EXACTLY what you need to do
- have MORE money to spend on things you love
“It gave me motivation and made me think more positively”
Please pop along and join my women’s only Your Money Sorted Facebook group, if you would like to be inspired about money.
I am Eileen Adamson, Your Money, Sorted coach, working online with UK based women. I can help you to develop a better relationship with money and feel calm, relaxed and positive about money. This will allow you to feel confident, in control and able to make good financial decisions. Through creating a good relationship with money you can then live the life that YOU want to lead.