03/04/2013: I Need Closure

I’ve closed the account!!!

“What account?” I hear you say.

The money sucking, temptation wielding, black hole that is was my student account.

In my quest to be the controller of my finances, I am taking steps to eliminating the things that can cause one to falter. I had a student account which had gone from being useful during my student days with it’s 0% overdraft to being a debt enabler because of the interest it now charged. I had planned to have paid it all back by the time the 0% rate ended but unfortunately I didn’t. And when I did pay it back, I would use it again. Overdraft is tempting. Too tempting. My solution? Shut that sucker down!

I would leave it too long after getting back in credit to close it and by then all these thoughts of how I could use the money what come creeping back in and the account balance would once again dwindle down. This time though, I was determined for it not to happen so once I got it back up, I marched myself to the bank and closed the account.

Unfortunately it’s not just me – many people find themselves in this situation. The reason for this, is that we give the allure of what we could buy and do with the (borrowed) money now more importance than being in a financially stable position. Then we get into debt and wonder how we got here.

Interest is the cost of borrowing the money from the bank and the longer you borrow their money the more you pay. If you had to rent a car, you would limit the length of time you borrow it for so you wouldn’t have to pay too much. So why are we lackadaisical when it comes to, in essence, “renting” money.

You’re paying money to use money. Think on that! Imagine if every time you went to the shops someone told you that in order to use your credit card you have to pay a certain amount, you would think twice – but that is exactly what we do! Only, instead of paying upfront every time, it just gets added on at the end of the month in one big lump sum so we don’t notice it as much.  I realise I had been giving the bank my hard-earned money for free!! Just because I wanted new shoes. “The shoes ain’t gonna pay me back nothin’!

So that was it. No more. If you’re paying a debt back, once you’re in credit close the account and start afresh I say. It may be difficult and you will toy with the idea especially if you have been with a bank for a long time. Don’t get distracted! There are plenty more (and better) banks in the sea. The old account will hold too many memories and still allow you access too much borrowed money linking you back to your past bad habits. If you really really don’t want to close it however (maybe the perks are too good), ask your bank to remove the overdraft feature and take the overdraft away. Those bank charges you’ll now get if you go overdrawn will soon remind you of where you want to be: In credit and who you want to be: Financially free!

What are your debt- busting moves? Leave a comment I’d love to hear from you

Good thing of the day: Closed an account. Another step towards financial well-ness

23/03/2013: Who Are You?

I can’t remember how I came across this site and it’s not one I intend on revisiting (I don’t think I’m their target audience haha) but I came across an article which I had to share:  6 Harsh Truths by David Wong.

Now time for a disclaimer, truly, I wouldn’t have put it in the way the author put it or written it in the same tone (and definitely not the same language) but if you get past all that and keep reading the essence of what he is saying is so true (my opinion).

The main message of the article is: Do something! Challenging his readers to do something (anything!) in 2013, he describes how, to the rest of the world, you are only a sum total of your skills. People need things in the world and you are only important to them if you can meet that need. There is an “Inner You”- the part that is kind, nice, caring i.e. you character – and there is an “Outer You”, the part that is seen by the world and should be producing and contributing to it. Nobody takes notice of people who haven’t done anything or don’t do anything, no matter how kind, caring, truthful or eloquent they are inside. Your life is worth (to others) what you can bring to them otherwise you are insignificant (to them of course). So “You” (to others) are what you do.

What you are on the inside is the root for what you are on the outside but people can’t always see the inside so your outside has got to be good enough for them to take notice of you. You have to do something – develop a skill, do a job, create something. People inherently care about themselves and it’s a conscious decision that has to be made in order to care about others. We are not made to just live for ourselves. As much as we should put in effort to make sure our character and the “Inner You” is sound, the “Outer You” is the one people see as “you” must be sound also.

So, who are you? What are you doing, how are you affecting the world around you?

6 Harsh Truths by David Wong

Good thing of the day: Saturday!!

21/03/2012: So Far So Good: Discovering Me

I spent today working on thrashing out yet another business idea (I seem to have quite a few but need to actually make them a reality, I will start writing more about this particular journey soon) and discovering blogs. I did a clean up of my own blogs sites – I seem to have created quite a few which have been left undeveloped as they were just started them on a whim and I hadn’t really planned what I was going to write about (apologies if I’m hogging a name you may have wanted, I’ll try to let it go).

As mentioned in the “About” section I am a girl on a journey, discovering life and figuring out what I want to do with mine. I am actually two years on from when I should have started writing, (you’re probably quite fortunate, all the tales of frustration and despair might have been sombre reading!) and I’m in a much better place now than I was last year and the year before.

love yourself

theloveyourselfchallenge.tumblr.com

Two years ago I wanted to create a blog, after the encouragement of a friend (who actually wanted me to do it  for the sole purpose of  keeping tabs on my love life!) and started but didn’t progress with it.  The blog that was supposed to document my journey to discovering me – what I wanted out of life, what career I wanted and who I was – as I was searching for answers to that at the time  and to be honest I still am) and I wrote a few posts which I re-read today. We all go through a period of self-discovery – some are done quietly and quickly and some take time. It was good for me to re-read what I had written (you may even find it useful now) and it started like this:

September 2012

So I wanted to start a blog. I’ve come to a point where I feel like I need to explode, spin around, scream at the top of my lungs and unleash on the world. I’ve grown up with a solid safe background and have lived my life in what some would term “a good way”.

Good. Hmmm…There’s nothing wrong with being ‘good’ but I don’t want to be just “good”..I want to be great! I want to have purpose, I want to know what I’m doing and where I’m going!

The first step to being great?…Be yourself!

It’s only recently that I have really explored and understood what it is to be me – to really make my own decisions, do my own thing, follow my own path and know what I want.

I’ve always wanted to do something…something big, something fun, something creative. I wanna sing, write, dance, jump, travel, explore, conquer the world! (Need a bit more money for that part but I’ll get there…anyone wanna bless me?)

Growing up, my friends seemed to all have their passions and things in life they were doing and although it really inspired me (and still does), I thought that I was somewhat inadequate/un-interesting as I didn’t have a single strong passion or focus and I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I’ve come to realise that my problem is not, not having that ‘one thing’ I want to do but actually wanting to do a lot of things and not knowing where to start! So I’m going to share with you my journey….”

Continues here (Pt1)… and here (Pt2)

After reading the posts I realised how much I have learnt since, how my views and perspective has developed and although I haven’t fully “arrived” or found all I wanted to, even in a short space of time I have discovered a lot.

For a while I didn’t think I was passionate about anything.  I liked a lot of things but I hadn’t found the one thing that was my all-consuming passion like some of my friends had. They had always had that thing they had always wanted to do and were doing it or on their way to doing it and I thought that was how it was supposed to be but I’ve discovered it’s not.

I like and am interested in a lot of things from media and publishing, music, hair and beauty, business management. I am looking to start my own business and have so many ideas. I want to travel, sing, paint… The important thing is to pick something and get moving.  I have come to learn that your passion may not be for a career! Instead it may be for doing things creatively, helping people or talking to people and there are many roles within which you can do that!

The thing’s I’ve learnt since that time? :

1) You don’t have to stay in one job for 20 years! You can have many careers if you wish. You determine how that pans out.

2) You don’t have to know all the answers at the start. Just start.

3) On the way to doing what you love you may have to do what you don’t love for a while but keep the goal in mind so you don’t get stuck.

4) You may not have a passion for one thing but a love for multiple things. If you are stuck deciding which path to follow, just choose one and run with it – your passion will grow. If it doesn’t work, fix the problem or go onto the next thing, at least you’ve tried, you can now rule that one out. Also, I have come to learn that your passion may not be for a career! Instead it may be for doing things creatively, helping people or talking to people and there are many roles within which you can do that!

5) Doing something with your life and choosing a career are actually two separate things. I can choose to make a positive difference with my life just by the way I speak to people and treat them every day. My career is the way I make a living and this can change as many times as I want.

A great article I read about this topic can be found here and here

What are your view on this topic? I’d love to hear from you 

Good thing of the day: I realise how much I have grown, even in the last six months