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Now, I’m not talking about how to be greedy and power-hungry with money, that’s the unhealthy way and gets you into more trouble eventually.
I’m talking about loving and respecting your money so that it helps you grow financially.
Did you know that 70% of Americans think that it’s rude to talk about money? A survey stated that people were more likely to disclose their income (39%) over savings (30%) or debt (29%) to family and friends.
Think about it, how many of us cringe when it’s time to create a budget, pay the bills, or do the taxes? Some people take it so far as to avoid doing them altogether, which gets them into more financial trouble.
So, let’s learn 10 easy steps to learn how to love money and make it work for us for financial success.
1. Learn to Talk about Money
Many of us growing up were taught that talking about money is taboo. This is counter-productive in our adult life as not talking about money can actually cost us money.
Learning to talk about money openly helps you:
- Negotiate a pay raise at work – Fear of bringing this up can get you stuck at the same pay rate for years.
- Negotiate a Salary – Doing your salary rate homework before a job interview prepares you to get the best salary to start at.
- Get a better home price – Whether you’re buying or selling, talking about the average price of homes in your neighborhood can get you a better price on your own house.
- Find a better rental – Talking with neighbors and doing research helps you find a fairer price.
- Check your bills – Asking around if your utilities and other bills are normal or unusually high.
As you can see, it’s a good idea to discuss money openly and do some digging to find the optimal financial benefit for you.
2. Learn to Love Budgeting
For some of us, “budgeting” is a four-letter word, hence, only 1/4th of Americans do not have one.
Why should you love budgeting? Here are several reasons why:
- Know exactly how much money you have
- Know how much money is earmarked for a future bill payment
- See where you’re wasting money and cut back and save
- See when a bill is due and not be late (some budgeting programs send you reminders)
- Plan for future endeavors by setting money aside specifically for that purpose
Having a budget actually makes you more money in the long run as you’re not overspending, not making wasteful purchases, and are not late with payments which again creates more financial woes with higher monthly minimums, higher interest, and a lower credit score.
Creating a budget is pretty easy, either by using a paper and pen or with several handy budgeting apps, and you shouldn’t shirk this important money duty.
3. Learn to Communicate with Family about Finances
A family who has regular money talks and budget meetings is more likely to be financially successful and happier than a family that doesn’t.
If one doesn’t know what the family financial situation is, they’re more likely to overspend which puts a strain on the budget and available money and this often leads to fights over finances.
Being involved can help you with your family’s goals. It would be quite difficult for a person to work towards their family’s financial goals if they weren’t aware of their financial situation. Being involved can help keep you motivated and know what’s going on.
Another important point with the both of you knowing the family money situation and the both of you knowing how to run the budget will really prevent future woes in case one of you leaves, or passes.
Lastly, when your partner and family know your financial wishes after you pass away (with a Will), the less likely there’ll be squabbles over who gets what.
4. Stop Seeing Money as Evil
As I mentioned earlier, we think loving money means greed, negative influence and “the root of all evil”.
We need to change our thinking in the other direction – that money can also do good. You can improve your life and the lives of others.
Learn to be generous, start helping the social causes you believe in and donate your time and money to improve situations and lives. Some studies have found that people are happier when spending money and time on others than on themselves.
Generosity also benefits those in the workplace by reducing stress and job burnout, as well as in relationships, where there are more contentment and longer-lasting romantic relationships.
So, having money isn’t all bad and evil, you can use it to help others and reap the positive benefits back into your own life.
5. Learn to Love Money more than Things
This section focuses on “Needs vs. Wants”, which we’ve covered on FFL a few times.
I don’t mean you should hog money and be over the top frugal. I’m implying that you should be using money wiser than spending it all on things you want.
Some examples of loving money more than things:
- Saving it – Create savings goals and an emergency fund
- Investing it – Invest for kids’ colleges, your retirement, and money growth.
- Stop upgrading – Stop buying the next new upgraded product when it’s released.
- Stop buying brand new – Buy used (or refurbished) items for great savings
- Stop impulse buying – Give yourself time between seeing something you like and actually getting it, maybe the appeal has worn off by then.
You’d be surprised at how much you won’t miss when you’re satisfied with the things you do have instead of craving for the things that you don’t.
6. Learn to Value Yourself
Start thinking better of yourself and see that you’re valuable.
We all doubt our ability in certain areas of our lives sometimes, but a constant low self-esteem image or low self-worth affects every part of our lives, including our finances.
This negative thinking will not help when it’s time to negotiate for a salary, a raise, or how much to charge for freelance work. If you think lowly of yourself, you’ll put a lower price on your work and you’ll luck out on making some good money.
Start learning to be more positive towards yourself by:
- Accepting that we all have our own unique talents
- Stopping the thinking that others are better than you
- Being aware that we teach others how to treat us
- Stopping comparisons
- Not fearing failure
- Treating others positively too
Another part of becoming positive is to cut out the negative people in our lives – the ones perpetuating the negative feelings in you.
Learn to value yourself more and the financial advantages will follow.
7. Loving Money gives you Freedom
Think of how much freedom and stress relief you’ll have by not worrying so much about money.
I mean, would you enjoy your vacation if you’re thinking about how much every little thing cost? Nickeling and diming everything takes the fun out of everything you do in life.
Instead, adopt the thought process that you “earned” your way to that goal and you deserve the freedom that comes with it. Celebrate that you had the money to be able to reach your goal in the first place.
This also applies to what I mentioned in #5 – learn to love money more than things. When you plan ahead, you’ll have peace of mind about your future finances. You no longer worry as much about possible financial catastrophes as you have already set the money aside for this.
Whether it’s dinner out, a brand-new item, a vacation, or a retirement goal – you set money aside just for that purpose and patiently saved up towards it – go ahead and enjoy it!
8. Be Eager to Make more Money
“But you just said it’s not about greed!” I know, but this isn’t exactly about having greed.
When you start wanting to make more money, whether it’s because you’re living paycheck to paycheck, or you want to quit the rat race, you start opening up more to money-making ideas you haven’t considered before.
Before you started reading Frugal for Less, were you aware you could make money by:
- Playing Games
- Teaching English
- Personal Grocery Shopper
- Driving Around
- And many more unique ideas!
I’ve mentioned before that I’m disabled and thought I couldn’t have a successful career until I came across freelancing writing.
Being eager to earn more money isn’t necessarily a bad thing and can open you up to amazing opportunities you haven’t thought of before.
9. Keep Learning
A great step to learn how to love money is to keep learning about it.
Keep learning about different ways to:
- Improve your job skills – Improving your skills means a potentially higher income
- Improve your credit – Improving your credit score improves future opportunities
- Investing – Learning about investing creates better financial decisions and prospects
- Making and Saving Money – Always look for new ways to make and save money
- Avoid bad decisions – Investigating any financial information can help avoid losing money in a scam or financial fad.
- Improve yourself – Learn to overcome negative aspects of your life and amplify the positives
You can start learning by grabbing this book on being successful.
10. Forgive Yourself
The last but not least lesson you need to know to start loving money is to learn to forgive yourself for any financial mistakes.
Forgiveness is a powerful action to undertake as it prevents us from being a prisoner to our past. Once we stop being ashamed of our money mistakes, we can start having a healthier attitude towards money and start enacting more positive financial decision.
Use your past mistakes as a lesson on what not to do, but don’t pound yourself every time a similar financial decision comes up. You’re not the only person who has missed paying a bill, went over budget, or dipped into their savings for an impulse buy.
To help you heal from financial regrets, you need to:
- Talk about it – Talking is healing, talk to someone you trust to listen without judgment
- Address the belief behind it – Was there a thinking process that leads to the regret? Address it and change it.
- Find the positivity – Find a lesson in the mistake, be glad it wasn’t as huge as it could’ve been
- Learn a new response – Take the lesson you learned and apply it to prevent it from happening again – cut up your credit card to prevent impulse spending?
We all make mistakes in life, even financial ones, the best we can do is not make it again, forgive ourselves, and move on.
Money shouldn’t be our enemy or hold us captive either. We can learn to love our financial situation and find ways to improve our money situation in any way we can.
Here are some more articles on improving your love of money: