1. Not paying yourself first-The first payment made from any paycheck or business withdrawal should be toward your personal savings or investment program. Most experts recommend saving at least 10%. While this may seem like a lot, most individuals can defer some spending in order to meet their personal objectives. Consider having a portion of your paycheck directly deposited into a separate savings or investment account that is not connected to your ATM or debit card. Automatic saving is a cornerstone to financial wealth building.
2. Not taking advantage of your employers’ benefit plans-This includes not taking advantage of or not maximizing the employer’s match in your 401(k) plan. No one can afford to turn down free money. It also includes not taking advantage of other employer benefits such as Health Savings and Flexible Spending accounts which can dramatically cut the cost of insuring care for your family.
3. Borrowing to meet ongoing expenses or to pay other debt-If you find yourself falling deeper into debt just to make ends meet, it’s time you face facts, you need a budget.
4. Stealing from your retirement-if you find yourself raiding your retirement while you are still working, you need to set time aside and create a budget.
5. Hiding and not setting goals-Post your goals and review them Every Day. Not knowing you have enough saved for your children’s education, your own retirement, or any other goal that you are looking to achieve is detrimental to you and your family’s future plans. Act now and take control of your life.
6. Bad Debt-taking on debt just to achieve a boost in lifestyle. Long after the initial good feeling of owning something new has worn off, you will still have the monthly payment. Think of debts as receiving a monthly “decrease” in your earnings since you will have less disposable funds available to do the things that are important to you in the future.
7. Not being Happy-Our culture is pervasive with the “I will be happy when” syndrome. Surveys show that a significant portion of the population report that they would be happy if they could increase their income by 20%. This perception seems to remain true at all income levels. People caught in the 20% trap can never be happy because, even if the objective is reached, there will always be another 20% more needed to remain happy. Happiness is a choice. Look and be thankful for things that make you happy everyday.
Learn to change your mind about anything-It’s easier than you think!