How to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck

Are you tired of living paycheck to paycheck? According to CNN Money 76% of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.

It’s become the norm, but if you find yourself checking your bank account and seeing an ever-shrinking balance then something’s gotta give.

Living paycheck to paycheck is a vicious cycle that seems impossible to shake.

It is easy to be reactive with money and basically freak out when crisis hits: you get a flat tire, experience job loss, or if find out ya have a fibroid the size of a potato inside of you.

Yes, I had a fibroid and I about fainted when I found out.

It’s stressful enough dealing with a crisis, it helps to have the financial piece already taken care of.

Being reactive and in the moment will only keep you in the paycheck to paycheck cycle.

You don’t have to always hold your breath and wait for your next payday.

Here’s how to stop living paycheck to paycheck: you need a plan with money.

First, find out where is your money going?

In the personal finance world, you hear about making a budget and following it! I get it, that can sound like the last thing you want to do.

Instead of feeling restrained by a “budget,” start feeling empowered.

Be proactive and become Chief Financial Officer to run the business of you.

There are a lot of expense tracking apps and tools you can use. They’re all great, but they tend to analyze spending after you made a purchase.

They leave you with cute little pie charts showing how much you spent in various categories.

To stop living paycheck to paycheck I recommend having a money meeting each month. 

We’re talking every. single. month.

Instead of apps, I use financial statements and I freakin’ love financial statements because they are what actual CFO’s and Fortune 500 companies use.

The Income Statement shows your income and expenses for the month.

Before you spend a dime as CFO, project your income and expenses for the month.

Then, at the end of the month you’ll enter your actual income and expenses.

This is perfect if you are tired of getting to the end of the month and wondering where all your money went.

With this process you tell your money what to do.

The action of projecting income and expenses and then filling in actual expenses will help you be accountable to your financial goals- like paying off debt, investing, saving for a home etc.

When you have a plan with money you’re in charge and you can do MORE of the things you love and less of the insignificant things that don’t really matter to you!

If you’ve never sat down and had a plan with money your mind might completely freeze as you try to project upcoming expenses.

That is why I created a Financial (day) Planner. The things in life like your doctor appointments or bachelorette parties also cost money. It puts a dollar sign to your to-do list and helps you forecast, anticipate, and plan for the things in life that seem to just “pop-up,” and keep throwing you off.

To stop living paycheck to paycheck open a spreadsheet to fill in your financial statements, or of course you can check out the Financial (day) Planner if you join me in the next class.

Stop reacting. Find out where your money is going and start projecting your expenses in advance.

Love Carly

P.S. You don’t need to figure this money stuff out on your own.

Ask Carly is a way for us to stay connected and support one another on our journey to gaining financial independence. Sometimes you reach a fork in the road where you aren’t quite sure what your next steps should be.

Have a dilemma that is big or small? Submit your question here.

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