Manage Your Time, Manage Your Money

by David Bakke

Time to go homeSometimes, when I have a few spare seconds in my day, I let my mind wander about various things financial.  Recently, I was looking back on how things were for me, in general, when my finances were a mess.

Of course, the biggest motivating factor in getting myself out of debt was me. Had I not had the internal willingness and desire to do it, it never would have happened.  However, running a close second in the motivation department was my mother.  Maybe it was out of filial love, or maybe it was because I owed them (my parents) a boatload of money!

But what I remember the most is that in tandem with giving me some pointers on how to get out of debt, she always made sure that I was organized.  She told me, “If you can’t manage your time, how can you expect to manage your money?”

So as my mind was looking back on these great and wonderful days, it made me think…

How many people do a great job of managing their time but do not manage their money well?

I think the answer is self-evident. As I see it, it is virtually impossible to do one well without doing the other well. They go together like hand and glove.

I guess one thing that I never thought of was this-if managing my money took some huge chunk of time out of my daily/weekly/monthly life, would I still do it the way that I do?  I think the answer is a resounding NO.  The reason I say that is because I know there are some things that I could do a better job of but don’t because of the time factor. No need to mention them, but at this point in my life, there are other things I would rather spend my time on.

So, if you are going to take the plunge and finally fix your finances, keep in mind that some time management skills will need to be factored in as well.  If not, I would imagine there would be a greater chance of one giving up. Simply because, people feel, it would take too much time.

Just a few quick steps here on some things I see as necessities to managing your time in this day and age (as it relates to financial management):

First, organize your bills.  A basic accordion file might do or a small filing cabinet.  In addition to physically organizing them, try organizing your payments as well.  It took me a little time, but I adjusted my payment dates to where I only pay my bills one time per month.  This is huge compared to the hodge-podge way I used to pay them.

Second, eliminate ALL unnecessary things from your life.  This includes unnecessary phone calls (solicitors come to mind), unnecessary emails (your Spam folder and Empty buttons are your friends.  Plus, these emails could be security risks as well).

Third, limit your social networking time.  Unless you have all the free time in the world, this will probably need your attention.  I have a simple question to ask-how was your life before Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc?  Did you still have friends?  Were you still able to keep up with what was going on in their lives?  OK, then limit that stuff.  Personally, I think it is all mindless anyways.

Organizing and impacting you finances will take a decent amount of time in the beginning. And lesser amounts as time goes by.  However, if you see it as some cumbersome process or something that you don’t have time for, if you ever do start, you’re re likely to give up.  Follow these steps, and it should free up enough time for you to give you the time you need.

 

As always, your comments and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

{ 3 comments }

1 Qt May 17, 2010 at 6:34 pm

You know, this post make sense even if you (I 😉 ) are out debt, as i am somewhat disorganized and a few times i ended up having to abruptly invest time and stress for keeping things going without late fee dues or such/worse.
Ciao!

2 David/yourfinances101 May 18, 2010 at 10:32 am

Qt,

Trsut me, I think these things happen to the best of us. I kick myself when they happen to me, but again, I think the saying in Englush is “Such is life”!

Thanks for commenting

3 jem June 1, 2010 at 5:45 pm

thank you for those words of wisdom; they were just what i needed to put me back on track.

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