Ready to Own Your Destiny?

I’ve been sharing my five-step BONUS program to boost your financial wellness, and today I’m sharing step two. These money moves are proven to reduce financial stress and anxiety and help you develop habits that allow you to live the life you want.

Last week, I shared step one, the B in BONUS: Build Emergency Savings.

Today, I’m sharing step two, the O: Organize and Assess.

What does organizing have to do with financial wellness? First, when we know what we have and where it is, we can actually make plans.

Second, just being on top of this part of your life helps you feel more in control – and confident.

Third, you may be pleasantly surprised! When you organize, you might find an old 401(k) from a previous job that you forgot to roll over, or a savings account from long ago.

How do you do it? Chip away. Block out 15 minutes a day or an hour on Saturday morning – whatever you can spare.

Gather financial statements for every account you have – checking account, line of credit, mortgage, investments, everything.

Once you have all your statements, get all your information in one place. This could be an Excel spreadsheet that you manually update, or a program like Mint, Wally or You Need a Budget where you link your accounts and updates are automatic. (I don’t have a preference for one or another of these. The best one for you is the one you’ll continue using, so try one out and if it’s frustrating, move on.)

Pour yourself a cup of coffee (and a cookie if you feel like celebrating your hard work!) and take a look at what you’ve got. How big is your emergency fund? What do you have invested? What do you owe? How expensive is that debt (i.e., what’s the interest rate?)

Knowledge is power. Pulling together all this financial information is giving you knowledge. Embrace the power of knowing where you’re at. It’s the best way to figure out how to get where you want to go – and that’s what I’ll share next.