This post is going to be somewhat about my philosophy on money, finances and making things work for yourself.
Basically, my philosophy is this: If You Are Waiting for Someone Else to Fix Your Financial Problems, You Are Going to Wait a Long Time!
We live in a society that wants the government to fix everything for them. Many people have lost ingenuity, creativity, the desire to help themselves and in so doing, the self respect that comes from making things work for yourself.
Their philosophy goes something like this: We need to help the poor and needy (I agree this is true). Then they turn that into: The government needs to help the poor and needy (only perhaps, partially true). That then turns into: We all need help. This becomes, we all need a bazillion government programs to help us all and bail us all out etc. etc.
Okay, maybe that's a little exaggerated. But how did this country go from wanting to help the poor and needy to now everyone needs help? How did your needs become my responsibility? How did my needs become yours? Why can a family of immigrants all cram into a tiny apartment, share expenses, work minimum wage jobs and eventually buy a business and climb out of poverty? Could it be something in our thinking?
My thinking is this: when we start with the thinking that we need to help the poor and needy, that is noble. There are some people who truly need help and I am not at all saying we shouldn't help the truly poor and needy. But everyone isn't poor and needy. The philosophy that the government is obligated to do more and more and more...seems to be a philosophy that says maybe we're not all that responsible for ourselves. And if we're not all that responsible for ourselves that maybe when we took out $50,000 in student loans (or whatever the need may be) and are having trouble paying it back, that maybe that is somehow the government's responsibility, which ultimately turns into your neighbor's responsibility, which turns into higher taxes.
I don't know about you but I don't think the government has done that great a job with our money. As a matter of fact, I think it's been pretty abysmal. This means I don't want to give them more of it. I have a base-line that I think government should do. And I think they are in way over that.
Okay, so how does that apply to us, this day at this time and to our own finances? The way it applies is this: you are responsible for your finances. If You Are Waiting for Someone Else to Fix Your Financial Problems, You Are Going to Wait a Long Time! If you have the drive and the want to, you can turn things around.
The first things to do is to look where you can save. Many people believe they can't save in any way any more than they do. They often say this with a Starbucks in their hand. So, look closely at what you are spending on. Remember that rewarding yourself little treats can cost you dearly in the long run. You don't have to deprive yourself. Just make the coffee at home. Say you spend $10.00 a week on coffee treats. That's $40.00 a month. What if you took that $40.00 a month and tacked it onto your smallest payment. Say you owe $300.00 on a credit card. If you tacked that extra $40.00 a month onto a card you could have it paid off in no time. Then, a snowball effect occurs because you no longer have the credit card payment PLUS you have the $40.00 a month on top of that to put on your next bill.
There are so many creative ways to save money. Making your own way gives you such a sense of self-respect and dignity. It lets you know you are somewhat in control of your own destiny (barring a catastrophic thing)!
You can do this! You can change your own life! But only you can do it because If You Are Waiting for Someone Else to Fix Your Financial Problems, You Are Going to Wait a Long Time!