So, I have a secret…(Well it will no longer be a secret, but it was before this post). I just opened my first savings account in May!
Prior to writing my Life Plan my thought process on savings was, how can I have money saved and debt at the same time?
I would save money for things that I planned to do by keeping a mental note of what was in my checking account. Although this worked for me, I now know and accept that this is not really efficient.
Writing my life plan allowed me to gain a better understanding of income as it relates to my larger goals. Here is what I wrote about my Income Activities Life Category:
Purpose: To par take in meaningful activities that allow for my financial freedom
Outcomes: “Ashley found ways to streamline multiple projects that allowed her to save money and create a foundation in her maternal family name- LaGarde Foundation.”
As a child (and adult), my mother would always tell me, “pay yourself first”. She would explain, “I don’t care if it’s just $10, and it does not matter who else you owe, save some money for a rainy day or a special occasion”. Needless to say, I did not heed her words.
There are many reasons that I was not mentally and emotionally ready to start my savings account. Having to be honest with myself, I think the underlying reason was because I did not think my commitments were worth the investment.
No longer is this the case. After writing my Life Plan and understanding the impact that my income activities will have on my family legacy and those I love, I am now taking my personal finances more seriously. Long story short, I opened my savings account. My new savings plan will actually involve more than 1 savings account.
I will have a save to save account and a save to spend. I may also create 1 additional savings account for
what I call, life events. For example, I will be in my best friend’s wedding next May. I need to save up money for all of the expenses associated with this. Once this occasion is over, there will probably be another life
event that will require temporary saving.
Going further than just opening a savings account, I have begun working with a financial planner. In September I will be opening my first IRA account AND starting a life insurance policy!!!!!!!! I am so excited and look forward to sharing more information about my financial freedom.
Like my mother, I will encourage my children to “pay themselves first”, but I will go a step further and begin to
teach them about savings options and long-term financial planning at an early age.
How has an aspect of your life improved since writing your Life Plan? What are some wise words of financial planning you received?
Below is a link to the Suze Orman website. Spend a few minutes (or more) on the site weekly for proven tips on money management.