Recently I signed up for email courses with ChristianPF to help get finances buttoned up and in order so we can use the money we make to do the things we want and that we think are important. I sat down and did an ‘accelerated’ version – basically read through about 12 of the lessons last night – because I don’t really have the time to sit down and look at a new lesson every day right now.
I have been pretty passionate about my finances since they became a thing. To me financial freedom is living within my means at a rate that allows me to not worry when I have a $5,000 unexpected housing expense, that I am able to put money away for retirement and when A is older that I would be able to provider her with reasonable requests like horse camp or dance lessons. I would also like to be able to work less. There is something very important to me to have more control over my time and I feel like that can be achieved through financial freedom.
It isn’t that I don’t want to work or that I am opposed to long hours – for the right job I would do it but until that happens to come around my time is better spent with my family. So back to these lessons. I recommend them. They are varied so far in terms of what is being discussed. Bob explains ways to decrease debt via things like avoiding late fees, decreasing spending, budgeting, and even offers ideas on how you can generate more income. Some things like reducing dinning out, are no brainers – others are new concepts I am not really familiar with especially related to tips on decreasing cost of gas. He also suggests looking at your net worth occasionally. At first I thought the idea silly but he explains the value in it. It can show you improvement in your financial situation in a meaningful way. I may not be increasing what I have in the bank at the moment but I am increasing assets I can tap into by decreasing bills – just another motivator.
I also like that he doesn’t take an approach of credit card or electronic banking of any variety is ‘evil’ and that he has been there and is willing to share his personal story. I have heard of other ‘programs’ like the envelope technique but struggle with that since I like to do a lot of shopping and bill paying online and via credit card for the rewards. I am not only looking for a system/technique to get me out of debt but one that also fits my lifestyle and can adjust to my values – this one does just that and bonus it’s free!
Tonight I am mapping out my snowball payment plan and I hope I will be able to say all of our credit cards are paid off in the fall. I have tried this before but doing it on my own I lacked support and focus. Here is hoping and since it is free of charge I guess I have nothing to loose!