According to recent statistics, around 1 in 3 Americans have some sort of household budget plan, only 30% have a long-term financial plan that involves savings and investments for the future, yet 70% of us acknowledge that our financial plans need...
According to recent statistics, around 1 in 3 Americans have some sort of household budget plan, only 30% have a long-term financial plan that involves savings and investments for the future, yet 70% of us acknowledge that our financial plans need work. So why do we neglect such important elements of our lives and how can we motivate ourselves to do better? That’s the conversation I have with Emily Guy Birken, Financial Expert, money coach, and co-author of Stacked: Your Super-Serious Guide to Modern Money Management, on this episode of CFO at Home.
- Many of the things that we procrastinate about financially (saving for retirement, investigating a questionable credit card charge, etc), fall into the category of “important but not urgent”, so there are no short-term consequences for not getting them done.
- Reasons for Procrastination
- Anticipation that dealing with a situation is going to be unpleasant, time consuming, etc.
- All or nothing thinking (unless we have a certain dollar amount to apply towards our goal, we choose to do nothing)
- Shame of dealing with old mistakes
- Guilt that we haven’t been managing our finances closely enough
- Strategies for beating financial procrastination
- Put tasks on your calendar (and set reminders)
- Break tasks down into small component parts (work on it in 5-10 minute increments)
- Bribe yourself! Give yourself a treat for completing the tasks (indulge your inner 10 year old)
- Treat your financial past like you have amnesia. Focus how you deal with the issues going forward
- Start by taking small steps towards your goal
- Allocate a small amount of money to paying extra on your credit card balance, contributing to your 401k, etc. each month
- Helps to create a sense of empowerment about your future
- Sets you to take advantage of the time value of money
- Helps to view yourself as being more responsible with money
- Perform a cost/benefit analysis
- Often the tradeoff for procrastination in the long run is having to repeatedly put out fires
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