Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ways to Manage Your Money for a Better Quality of Life

Although they say that money doesn't buy happiness, you may wonder if "they" had a family of five to support. Money is the means in how we survive from day-to-day whether it is paying bills, gas in the car to get to work, or food in our children's stomach. You don't have to be in the upper-class bracket in order to live a finer life, though. If you watch your spending and make good financial decisions, you can provide a good life for yourself and your family.

1. Track Your Spending - If you can't afford a budget program for your computer, you can set up a method to track your spending with Microsoft Excel, the free to use Open Office, or by purchasing a columned ledger for a few dollars. Monitor the different categories of your spending and see where you can reduce the outflow. It helps to be able to visualize how much money is spent on unnecessary things like fast food and treats.

2. Do You Need It - There are many things that you may want to buy. Ask yourself if you need the item or not. You must answer yourself truthfully and not try to talk yourself into spending money on something that isn't required for living. Do you really need that 22-inch widescreen LCD monitor for your computer when that 15-inch screen works?

3. Home Decor - Many of us would like to decorate our homes with tasteful pictures, shelving, tables, and more. Did you know that you can buy tasteful living fixtures for the home at budget stores such as Family Dollar? While the quality may not be that of an item ten times its price tag, the fixture itself can bring a sense of style to the home.

4. Dining Out - In a busy world, cooking for a family or yourself can be that extra effort that your overworked body doesn't want to deal with. It's much faster and easier to pull up to the drive-through and order $30 in fast food. However, that $30 could buy a week’s worth of groceries. A grilled egg and cheese sandwich could cost you just over a quarter to make and is healthier for you to eat.

5. Morning Coffee - You can save an insane amount of money by brewing your own coffee in the mornings as opposed to picking it up on the way to work. For instance, each cup at the local 7-11 could cost you $1.29. After a week of working, you essentially could spend more than $6 for five mugs of coffee. That $6 could have bought you an entire container of coffee that could last you a month or so. You can even pick up flavored syrups if you like that sort of thing for just a few dollars.

Tightening the belt another notch or two may be required to live a better quality of life. Some creature comforts may be sacrificed in order to get what you truly want. As long as you can swallow your pride and shift your way of thinking, an improved lifestyle can be obtained for yourself and/or your family.

Author Bio:
Jack Meyers is a regular contributor for As a detective he wants to spread the knowledge of terrible things that can happen when people don’t fully verify the credentials of a caregiver or any employee. He also writes for various law enforcement blogs and sites.

*This was a guest post


Anonymous said...

Most all of these I picked up myself over the years due to maturation. Well, that, and having a family to support. The one thing I will take away from this post, though, is...grilled egg and cheese sandwiches? I *have* to try that!

Liz Mays said...

You're so right about places like Family Dollar. I've found oodles of neat things there for great prices!

Anonymous said...

These are all great tips! I'm working really hard right now on the "Do you NEED it."

Maddi'sMommy said...

I'm great at practicing most of the tips but I struggle with "Do you need it?" Sometimes I have a hard time deciding if it's a need or a highly-justified-but-still-a-want!

FireRunner2379 said...

Luckily my wife and I see eye to eye when it comes to money and spending. We never buy on impulse and have always saved for a rainy day. We only go out to eat a few times a month and that not only helps our wallets it helps our waistlines!

Unknown said...

These are all very sensible tips and things to think about when trying to get back to living a better quality of life. In my experience, it's always the things that we have that we hardly ever use and yet we spent money on thinking we would use them that really create that widening money pit. I think the best way to approach the decision of needing something or wanting something is to create concrete goals about everything. If you can keep that goal as a target and use it as a way to make your decisions on buying on a whim or realizing that you don't need something, it will really keep you grounded and more able to work towards what you really want.
A lot of these I learned through others, but I lot I learned through my own mistakes. These are all tips to keep in mind when attempting to recreate a frugal lifestyle which will actually lead to a better quality of life.

Betsy Barnes said...

About two years, my husband & I decided to get on the same page & really manage our money, doing these tips & more. We have saved so much money and couldn't be happier :)