Taking Control Of Your Financial Life
With To Catch a Dollar we opened the broader discussion about the significance of financial independence and stability in America. Here, drawing off their financial literacy program, our friends at Dress for Success give you some tips on ways you can improve your own financial state.
At Dress for Success, we realize that personal finances can be an overwhelming, emotional and confusing issue. We work with women in our programs to de-mystify and simplify these topics – and really get to the root of how each person can gain control of her financial life, achieve economic independence and reach her financial and life goals!
Here are some quick tips that everyone can use to get started!
Ask yourself the following key questions:
- How much do I earn?
- How much do I save?
- How much do I spend?
- How much do I owe?
- How much is delinquent?
- How much do I invest for my future?
Track your spending on a weekly basis for three to six months. Classify each expense as a “need” or a “want” and “fixed or “discretionary.” This will help you get a clear picture of your spending habits and allow you to create a personal budget.
Set your goals. Start with your life goals – career, family, education, personal interests, etc. Then think about the resources you need to achieve your goals, and develop short- term and long-term financial goals that will get you where you want to go! These financial goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time sensitive. Put them in writing, track your progress and review them on a regular basis!
We highly recommend reading “The Real Cost of Living: Making the Best Choices for You, Your Life and Your Money” by Carmen Wong Ulrich. This book is a fantastic tool for getting started on your financial journey!
This week, Dress for Success and the Allstate Foundation also launched the My Dollar My Life initiative – make a promise to change your own financial future, and Allstate Foundation will give $1 to the Grameen America branch fund.
Dress for Success conducts financial literacy programs that are 15-week seminars that educate participants on topics that address a range of levels of financial sophistication including budgeting, basic banking, tackling debt issues, taxes, investing, and retirement. Learn more aboutDress for Success’s financial literacy programs.