20 Tips For Financial, Personal and Family Stability

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Financial stability sounds like a very lofty goal, but when analyzed, it becomes very possible to accomplish. Most people in this day and age live from pay check to pay check. Savings accounts are few and far between in this economy. Having a year’s supply of expense money is a dream world.

Most people think that much money is almost impossible to put away. I would agree a one year supply of money is a huge task, but when we break it down into smaller chunks, it becomes more realistic.

Let me illustrate what I mean. House payments, food, clothing, utilities and other expenses are common for most households in most societies. To be honest I have read that an average family in the U.S. doesn’t have budgets. In other words they don’t plan for financial security. A monthly and yearly budget is absolutely necessary for a family to ever get ahead.

It gives you the necessary information to decide what is essential spending and what is nonessential spending. The attitude of financial security is a term that is hard to wrap your arms around. But when a budget is in place and you work to live with in your means, unnecessary spending becomes easily seen. The golden rule is: don’t live beyond your means.

Live within your basic budget and work hard to save money for the rainy days. Money is one foundation of divorce. When we fight about money we ruin our relationships with our spouse. It is hard to have love in our relationship or homes when we are arguing over money or anything else.

What every household needs is to set certain attitudes about living within your means. It is hard to realize when friends and neighbors drive up in a new car or buy a new wide screen T.V.; you don’t need to match them. The Good Lord gave the world commandments to live by. These rules are suggestions and not laws. We can all benefit from them if we just try.

1. Don’t covet. When we covet, we set the stage for pride to take over our pocket books and overspend. Your next door neighbor bought a 72″ flat screen television last week. Don’t covet another’s T.V., just live with what you have until time and circumstance change and you can afford one as well.

2. Thrift is the golden rule. Live within your budget and be happy with what you have for now.

3. Never forget the poor, the widows and children with one or more parents missing. Don’t listen to the television commercials about $18.00 a month can save a child’s life. Look around and notice the people in your own neighborhood who are in need.

4. Ten percent of your own money should be put away for the emergency that might never happen. Even retirement is an emergency when you examine it. A nest egg really comes in handy when illness keeps one away from work or a lay off handicaps the budget. Save your money.

5. Never borrow more money than you can afford to pay back. Homes are necessary and so are automobiles but limit what you buy of these two essentials. A lesser expensive car and house will always be just a car and a house.

6. Live within your means. A new paying job with more money is a stepping stone to greater things. But don’t go out and spend money you have been blessed with. Providence has blessed you, so be wise and grateful and prudent with your new fortune. (See #5)

7. Be honest with all you do and let integrity rule your identity. Never let the ends justify the means. Be grateful, cautious and wise in business and with friends.

8. Do something good for someone every day. Maybe it won’t be financially rewarding, but believe me, it helps the attitude that will develop you into a better person.

9. Spend a percent of your money every month that you can afford to develop an Emergency Preparedness Plan consisting of Food, clothing, shelter, fuel, and basic needs. (See #3)

10. When you buy, buy wisely both food and clothing. Watch for coupons and clothing sales. Don’t spend excessive money for gifts and presents for holidays. If money is limited, then buy just the essentials and get by until next year. Every good deed done is always returned, buy at discount houses and save even if it is a gift for a loved one.

11. Go to church. Yeah get with it and recognize we don’t know everything. He who made all things can help with family or individual problems. That is a golden rule of Him who made the laws of the universe. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all other things will given unto you. If you pray, pray together as a family and then alone with your spouse. If you don’t pray then try it, you might like it.

12. Know who you are and why you are here on earth. When we find out who we are, it gives us a better knowledge and ability not to judge others by our standards. Each of us is traveling up the same river. Yeah, some will arrive in style but the idea isn’t to get there first in the biggest boat but it is to get there. Be yourself and enjoy life and the trip.

13. Learn about investments before you begin to invest money. Find a good financial advisor before you even try to invest. It will save money and not cost you everything.

14. Seek the good things in life. No, you judge what is good and bad, not me. You are the one who will have to live with it.

15. The closest distance between two points is a straight line. You draw the line and follow your heart and mind after you know you are on the right course.

16. Make a weekly date with you wife. Not necessary to spend money, just spend time together, alone if possible.

17. Take time for your family. Once a week, take a night to be with them. Once a month, take time and a date with one of you children. No need to spend money, just be together and enjoy them. They grow up and are gone so soon, and these types of days are short lived.

18. Take time to tell your children you love them. Now men, just realize your lovely wife needs this same attention.

19. Obtain more education, either through schools or courses on the internet.

20. Be patient with yourself and with others. Life is not a fast race but a marathon and those who finish are winners. All good things come to those who can wait.

Robert D. Ashford was a Marine during the cold war and is now retired, after 50 years of construction management. He is a keen genealogist and loves humor. He watches the political horizons and likes to write commentary on what’s next.