Gaining Financial Freedom

We’re now entering into the final quarter of the year, and with so many happy memories to look back on, there are also some looming black clouds. With Christmas creeping closer, some of you may be feeling a pinch in your pocket. It happens every year, and pretty much everybody goes through it. But is there a way to finally gain financial freedom? Yes there is, with a little bit of patience, cut back, and perseverance you can all do it! Read on for a few hints and tips for gaining financial freedom.

The first step is all about changing the outlook in your mind. One of the main causes in stress from people in their teens, right up to the elderly is money. It can play on your mind over and over again, causing you to overthink and not plan clearly what needs to be done. If the stress of it is taking over your life, then try talking to someone. Whether it be a friend or family member. Or someone over the phone or internet if you’d rather talk to a stranger. If just reading this section is giving you anxiety, don’t panic. Nothing is irreversible, so take some time to breathe and relax, and follow the next steps to help solve your issues.

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Give money to a close relative to keep. This one may seem like a childish thing to do if you’re older, but it’s effective. Giving your money to someone who isn’t going to give it you back because you want a night out, or a McDonald’s is so effective. Just give them a little each time and before you know it, it’ll all start adding up. To give it a try now, plan how much you’re going to need for Christmas spending. Divide it by the number of paydays we have left (very few) and hand it over to whoever you trust to keep it. That way you’re not doing what most of us end up doing and spending all of your Christmas payday and bonus on presents and food. Leaving January to be a sad, hard month.

Plan, plan, and plan! This might be an obvious one, but some people just miss it out, or do a poor job at it. Sitting down by yourself, or your partner if you share incomes, and planning your income and outgoings is vital to gaining freedom. You need to be able to understand how and why you’re always left searching got penny’s at the end of the month. Plan everything from bills, to fuel or public transport costs if you don’t drive. Be sure to include the random outings or takeaways you have each month as they do add up. Before you know it you’ll have a spreadsheet full of everything you spend. And if you’re anything like us, you’ll realise takeaways, days out and random spendings on things you don’t need stand out on the page. Rather than cutting them out completely (everyone needs a treat now and then), think about reducing them to a normal level. A treat once a month is fine. But focus on spending your money on a good food shop, focusing on cheaper shops that offer the same products such as Aldi. You can save nearly half the price by shopping there!

Your job. This is a slightly harder one I know. But have you ever had a cheeky look at another company advertising the same job that you do and though, hold on. I earn less than that!? Well that’s because other companies try benchmarking salaries, which is basically where a company reviews their pay, and pay benefits to make sure job adverts look competitive. If you’re qualified, why not go for something a cut above the others. Without taking that chance you’ll never know what could come of it. If it doesn’t work, you’ve still got your old job and you’ve planned your money around that. Any extra money will just be a bonus!

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Some of you may be reading this, and have a worse situation with money. Some of you may have acquired a few debts over time that are beginning to crippling you. It’s easy to get a credit card and use it like you’ll never have to give it back. But you do, and the interest can ruin people. It’s also very easy to use sites such as very, or littlewoods, as they offer sort of loans on what they sell. Which is everything. You have a certain time to pay the money back, and when the time comes and you can’t, their interest is even worse than a credit cards. Now, the main thing to do here is not take out bigger loans in the hope it’ll solve your other debts. It won’t. The best thing to do here is again, plan. Calculate the total amount of debts you have in each place. Work out however many months you’d like to have it paid off by. And divide the two. That way you’ll have a clear route of getting yourself out the mess. It’s easy to spend whilst you still have the credit card, so make sure you chop it up and close down the use of any credit online accounts you have. Another great way of helping yourself is lowering your credit each time you make a payment. We all know how easy it is to reorder a credit card, or open an account back up. But if you reduce your credit limit each time, you can’t keep spending!

Hopefully after reading this article, gaining some sort of financial freedom might not seem so hard. We have all been in a bad place with money before, and we can all get out of it. Remember to not be afraid to talk to someone if your situation is out of hand, there’s plenty of people out there that will be willing to help you. If you have any hints or tips you swear by, feel free to leave a comment to help others!

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Cascade of Colour is a UK Men’s Lifestyle blog delving in to the world of Male Fashion and Grooming, Food, Music (a lot of this!), Design, Tech and Travel. Want to get in touch? Drop me an email at cascadeofcolour@gmail.com

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