What are You Thankful For?
What Are You Thankful For?
As we approach one of my favourite holidays of the year (aside from Passover, and Christmas, and Hanukkah, and my birthday), I’d like to check in with you to see what you’re thankful for?
I’ll start. I’m thankful for the health of myself and my family and friends, and also the financial education that my parents taught me at a young age, which now has provided me with the financial freedom to not stress about money. And I’m 33 years old. How many 33-year-olds do you know who can say that?
As the head of coaching for our Financial Freedom program, our program sees 1000’s of clients every year who are in really difficult situations because of a lack of financial education. Just remember, this is not your fault. We live in a broken system. But there is a way that you can make a change, and that change starts with altering your behaviours and habits.
How To Make Habits Stick
We all know bad habits are easy to pick up and hard to drop. Good habits on the other hand? Well, if it was easy, we would all be wealthy and fit (and able to wear the same jeans that we did in high school). I’m currently struggling to fit into the same pants that I was wearing before COVID hit. Damn you quarantine.
But I’m going to let you in on a super easy secret that can help you create strong, lasting habits.
Make those habits as easy as possible.
If you sat down and made a list of habits that you go through in a day, you can probably come up with around 10-20 of them. Here are a few of mine that may help you to create your list.
- Wake up and make coffee.
- Review budget.
- Read finance blog.
- Walk the dog.
- Brush my teeth.
- Make breakfast.
- Clean dishes.
- Get dressed in workout clothes.
- Work out.
- Do yoga.
- Make lunch.
Pretty crazy eh? It’s not even 1 pm yet and I’ve already gone through 11 habits that I don’t think about. I’ve gotten into a routine where I just do them.
Atomic Habits is our favourite book on creating winning habits. The author, James Clear, outlines a few tips you to follow...
Use this formula: I will (behavior) at (time) in (location). For example, instead of saying, “I will budget each month.” Try, "I will budget on the 1st of each month at 5 PM in my office."
Every habit is initiated by a cue. The cue triggers your brain to initiate a behavior because it predicts a reward. We are more likely to notice cues that stand out. Setting an alarm on your phone for 5 PM monthly is a cue that you need to budget.
Forming a new habit is hard so Make it Easy. We really strive for that in our Enriched Academy Programs.
And now I’d like to share with you:
5 Money Habits of Wealthy People
These concepts are honestly so easy, and they truly are the key to building wealth. We see most of our successful Financial Freedom clients live by these means, and you can start to see results today if you follow the list below.
- Live below your means. Spend less than what you earn. It’s as easy as that. Sit down and go through all of your sources of income, and everything that you spend money on. If you have money left over every month, and are putting money into an investment account, you’re beyond the majority of Canadians. If you’re overspending though, then you need to make some cutbacks unless you want to end up in debt for the rest of your life. It’s not about making more money. It’s about living with what you have and being smart with it. If Warren Buffett is worth over 70 billion dollar and lives in the same home that he bought 50 years ago for $31,000, and drives a modest Cadillac, then you can live within your means as well.
- Learn one new thing a day. No one has ever gone broke buying books. I read a daily personal finance blog that keeps me up to date with what’s going on in the world. If your new thing is a recipe, or a craft, or a new trade, then that’s awesome. But just force yourself to learn something new.
- Small steps each day. Have you ever read a book or taken a course but quickly found your motivation evaporated? Wealth is given to those that take small consistent actions daily. Ask yourself, what is one small thing I can do today to help me make progress with my finances?
- Track your net worth and budget monthly. You cannot improve what you don’t measure. These two numbers are the foundation for financial and time freedom. 30 minutes per month, that's all it takes. This is one of the biggest ways that we measure our clients in our Financial Freedom coaching program. We get them to track their Net Worth month and start to track their cashflow as much as possible. This way, they can see the correlation between the two. When you start to track your cash flow, and you spend less than what you earn, then your Net Worth goes up.
- Learn to say “no”. Only spend money on things that bring you an immense amount of joy and happiness. Everything else, say no to.
Once you’ve got the top 5 habits above in place, you’ll start to see dramatic results with your finances. You’ve just laid down the foundation to becoming financially successful. Congratulations. But there’s still more work to do! You need to review your financial goals and plan each month. Step 1 is creating that plan. Step 2 is constantly reviewing and making changes to your plan as things change. If you are not constantly reviewing your plan you could be headed in the wrong direction and not even know it.
When COVID-19 hit and our economy, we worked with all of our coaching members to revise their financial plans because so many things were changing all at once. Some of our clients had lost their employment, their investment portfolios were going down, their kids were home from school, among many other things.
The one thing that we’ve heard over and over again is how thankful our Financial Freedom clients have been for having us work with them throughout COVID-19. Even though some of our clients have seen a decrease in income, they’ve seen an overall increase in their Net Worth. This education that we provide is something that will be with you forever. And we can help you change your habits.
Just the other day I received a note from one of my past students. It made my heart go all warm and fuzzy inside.
“I am not exaggerating when I say that what you all do is life-changing! You helped us so much and we are forever grateful ????”.
So, if you’re ready to take control of your finances and join the 1000’s of Canadians who have gone through our Financial Freedom Coaching, sign up here for your coaching assessment to see if we can help you.
You’ll be thankful.