Your daily money habits are the key to improving your financial future.
Not only can they help relieve the financial stress in your life, but they also play a key role in achieving your long-term financial goals.
But what kind of habits are we talking about?
Well, in this article, we’re going to cover 7 of the best daily money habits you can adopt to start achieving more with your finances.
So, if you’re ready to start turning your financial dreams into reality, keep reading.
1. Track Your Expenses With A Budget
First and foremost, if you want to improve your financial situation, one of the most important daily money habits you can adopt is logging your expenses into a well-defined budget.
After all, if you don’t know what you are spending money on, or how much you have to spend, you are flying blind.
To be a little more specific, we recommend logging your expenses into a zero-based budget every single day.
This method of budgeting requires that you plan your monthly expenses down to the last dollar. And while this might seem overwhelming at first, it is simple in practice.
Start by identifying your monthly income.
Oh, and if your income fluctuates, don’t worry. We advise identifying your lowest earning month in the past six months, and budgeting from that number.
This will ensure that you’re staying realistic with your budget and not regularly overstating your monthly income.
Once you have your total income amount, the next step is to create an exact plan for how much you want to give, save/invest, and spend throughout the month.
This is where the term “zero-based budget” comes into play, as you’ll need to plan out every dollar of your income until you are left with $0.
And after every single dollar of your income is accounted for and allocated across your budget categories, you just have one more step: stick to your zero-based budget by logging your expenses every single day.
You took the time to understand your money flowing in and money flowing out, but the budget will not keep itself.
The good news is that it should only take you about 5 minutes a day to log your expenses into your budget keep up with this first daily money habit.
Just remember, it is much easier to keep up with a 5-minute daily habit than to play catch-up days or weeks later.
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2. Track Your Progress Toward Your Financial Goals
The best way to reach your financial goals is to make them part of your daily routine.
After all, it’s easy to lose focus on something that is out of sight, and thus, out of mind.
And since you’re already logging your expenses and tracking your daily budget, why not take it a step further and track your progress toward your financial goals.
By paying attention to this, you can make real-time adjustments in your daily financial habits in order to stay on track for your long-term goals.
Beyond that, checking in on your financial progress will help you re-focus on your goals and keep them a top priority in your life. This, in turn, is a great way to stay motivated and make better spending decisions.
3. Check Your Bank Account
This may sound obvious, but checking your banking account every single day is key to your long-term financial freedom.
By checking your bank account, you’ll always know exactly where your finances stand. But beyond that, this daily money habit will also help you spot any suspicious financial activity.
Avoiding surprises with your money is one way to stay financially sound, and a daily check of your bank account is a great way to know where your money is going.
4. Learn About Personal Finance
What channels are you using today to deepen your understanding of personal finance?
There is information everywhere, and it is just a matter of pursuing a daily education on the topic to keep yourself informed.
If you’re looking for a place to start, visit your local library or bookstore and browse the best-sellers in the personal finance section.
If you prefer to listen when you learn, find those same books on tape or start to browse the hundreds of options in podcasts on Apple, Spotify, or anywhere you may listen.
Another great option is to watch videos on personal finance. Subscribe to the financial channels that you like so that you can be notified when they share a new video.
Use Google to find websites and companies that specialize in personal finance. Watch their videos and read their blogs. Hearing one new perspective or tip about money can shift your entire mindset around your own financial goals and understanding.
So much of this information is free thanks to the internet. So, use it. Learn from it. Apply it. And then share it with a friend or family member.
Commit to 30 minutes of self-guided personal finance education every single day and you’ll be amazed by the positive impact this daily money habit can have on your life.
5. Say ‘No’ To Consumer Debt
This fifth daily financial habit is often the hardest for individuals to follow. The advent of credit cards makes it very easy to swipe now (with seemingly zero repercussions) and think about it later.
The problem is, oftentimes “later” rolls around, and the money isn’t there.
Our advice is simple: leave your credit cards at home. Do not purchase anything on layaway. And do not fall for promotions like “6 months same as cash.”
Debt reduces your financial margin. And each of those tempting options listed above is actually a fast-track in the opposite direction of financial freedom.
Know that this is a daily battle, and if you want to achieve your financial dreams as quickly as possible, you should get in the habit of saying ‘no’ to debt.
6. Stick To A Weekly Meal Plan
One of the sneakiest places that money “disappears” is through your daily food and drink habits.
There is nothing wrong with having your daily latte or after-work cocktail, as long as you budget those in.
Eating and drinking outside of the home will add up–especially when you add a 20% gratuity into the mix.
That’s why creating and sticking to a weekly meal plan is such an important daily financial habit.
Whether you’re planning out your meals for the week or following through on a plan you already created, sticking to a meal plan is one of the best ways to save extra money throughout the month.
7. Find Ways To Increase Your Income
Plain and simple, one of the fastest ways to reach financial freedom is to grow your income.
While it is beneficial to continually look for ways to reduce your monthly expenses, nothing beats growing the size of your financial pie.
Even an extra 10% a month can and will add up.
Whether you’re in sales, running your own side hustle, or working a part-time job, you should always be working to improve your income situation.
And the best part is, there are countless ways to earn extra money these days.
All you have to do is muster up the courage to get after it.
Seriously, it is up to you to set your own income growth goals, and then proactively start working towards them.
If you work for an employer, schedule a meeting with your manager and ask what it will take to earn more money in your current role. You may even need to apply for a new role within your organization or look for a new job if your income potential with your current employer is limited.
You will never know until you ask.
Don’t wait to be given a promotion, as it may never come. Ask what it will take to get there, and then make a plan to make it happen.
And if you work for yourself, the sky is the limit.
Look at ways to increase sales and ways to expand your network. Identify who you know that is successful, and ask them out for coffee, drinks or dinner. Pick their brain, pay for them, and thank them.
Then, use what you learned and keep growing.
Ultimately, your financial life is a product of your daily money habits. So, the better your habits, the better your financial future will be.
And the best part is, even a small daily change can have a major impact over the course of your life.
Start with one daily habit if you need to. Do that one habit every day for one week. Then, add another, and another, until each of these 7 daily money habits is second nature for you.
Over time, you’ll be amazed at the kind of things you can achieve through these few simple changes.