Imagine that you win a lottery, what would you do next? Are you more likely to go to the fanciest restaurant and buy the most expensive champagne, splurge a little more, and then save the remaining bit? Or, will you check out savings schemes, invest in various schemes, and if possible, enjoy a quiet dinner at your favourite joint? If you belong to the former category, be warned that your financial health doesn’t look quite good and if you don’t alter your behaviour now, you will regret it later in life. If you belong to the latter category, you are most likely on the right financial path.
One of the most important ways to lead a healthy financial life is by following the mantra that the rich and successful people follow: Do not save what is left after spending, but spend what is left after saving. The major mistake that the financially not-so-healthy people make is that they tend to spend first and then save a few bucks, if possible. And that’s not the only behaviour affecting their financial health. Let’s take a look at the common behaviours that can negatively affect your financial health and how you can mend them. Ready?
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‘Work hard, party harder.’ Does this describe you perfectly? Well, it’s nothing to be proud of, buddy. In fact, you are not only spoiling your health but also your financial health.
Fast food joints around every nook and corner, new pubs opening up every other weekend, and so many new restaurants that you are yet to dine at, right? Of course, this makes it difficult to eat healthy, home-cooked food. However, with urbanisation and modernisation, dining out has become a habit that is common. Hanging out with colleagues after office hours and sharing junk food have become the norm of city life. Even college students lead a very similar life. Also, with so many food delivery apps available on your smartphone, unhealthy and expensive food delivery is only a click away. With everything available so easily, one tends to become lazy and doesn’t realise that they are spending more. If you wish to save, all of this has to stop right now!
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Our solution: The need to hang out with friends is only natural. However, eat at home before you step out to meet anyone. Planning to drink with your buddies? How about a house party instead of going to that high-end restaurant with an even higher tax charge? Uninstall the food apps. They are not a need, but rather the means to empty your bank account. Pamper yourself once in a while so that you don’t give in to the old habit of spending.
It’s a matter of status
Life has become all about one’s social status. And people are willing to do anything to fit in. Comparing their assets, income, expenses, and lifestyle to their kith and kin come naturally to most people these days. Wondering what we mean? Well, in case your brother buys a sedan, you will go out of your way to get a better model or that which is more expensive, even if it is out of your budget. These things apply not only to big purchases but also to the smaller ones. For example, if your sister goes on a shopping spree, you feel the need to do so yourself too, right? And if your best friend went on a date to the new fancy restaurant with her beau, you might feel the immense need to go to a better restaurant and post pictures on social media about it. It’s all about the likes, isn’t it?
Our solution: You need to kill the desire to be better than someone else. Instead, you need to have a healthy competition with yourself. This will help you save a lot of money, which you would have otherwise splurged on unnecessary things. You have to learn to be happy with your life the way it is and start working towards a better life by starting to invest.
Shopping, shopping, and more shopping
SALE. DISCOUNT. OFFERS. FREE. Do these words get you super thrilled? There’s no doubt that you belong to the community of shopaholics, and you may need to join another community, the shopaholics anonymous. Whenever you feel low, do you go shopping? Or if there’s a new store launch, are you likely to be present there? If a clothing line launches a new collection, do you feel the utmost need to have those clothes in your closet? Be it cosmetics, clothing, shoes, personal care or anything under the sun that’s newly launched, you just HAVE to go and check it out, don’t you? If this sounds like you, you certainly need to stop all the shopping and start helping yourself!
Our solution: Each time you feel the urge to shop, ask yourself a simple question, ‘Do I really need it?’. If the answer is yes, go ahead and buy it. However, if you hesitate to answer that question or try to convince yourself that you need it, you certainly don’t need it. It’s pretty simple. You HAVE to learn to put your needs over wants and your finances will fall in place. You also have to block all the shopping websites so that you don’t give in to temptation. Once you start prioritising your needs and ignoring the wants, you will save a lot of money which you can then invest in various financial products like Fixed Deposits, Mutual Funds, Recurring Deposits, among others. Remember that your money will always look better in your bank than on your feet. Okay?
High credit usage
Is debt a part of your day-to-day life? Be it Credit Card debt or unpaid Personal Loan EMI, is your debt piling up? If on your payday the only thing that you think about is how you are going to clear all the debt, something is terribly wrong with the way you are handling your finances. If you swipe your Credit Card all the time, even for the things you don’t really need, the best solution is to practice restraint.
Our solution: Believe it or not, debt is the worst kind of poverty. Someone has rightly said that it’s better to go to bed hungry than to wake up in debt. Of course, it’s absolutely fine to own a Credit Card, however, you have to keep your credit utilisation ratio in check. Taking a Personal Loan during an emergency may be the right thing to do. However, you have to repay what you borrowed. So, not paying your EMIs and piling up debt is a big NO. So, you have to learn to be a wise Credit Card user so that your debt doesn’t increase. And you have to clear off your Personal Loan EMIs in order to live a debt-free life. If you plan it all, nothing is impossible.
Festivals = Splurging
The number of festivals celebrated in India is innumerable. And of course, the expenses incurred during each festival fall under the same category. Whenever a festival is around the corner, we tend to spend extravagantly on clothes, food, and gifts. What’s more? During each festive season, there are numerous sales hosted online as well as offline, which makes it extremely difficult not to shop and give in to the festive mood. In fact, festivals make you splurge on things you absolutely don’t need. Only because you see the word discount and sale, you end up splurging on things, which may not actually be at lower prices at all. The numerous emails that hit your inbox during festivals cannot be ignored, right? But we have the solution.
Our solution: If you want to avoid any unnecessary expenses during a festival, it’s best to shop way before the festival. Wish to buy gifts for your close ones? Do it a month in advance so that you can avoid the crowd that hits the shopping malls and shopping websites during the festive season. Spend time with your family rather than spending time online or in the malls. You will not only get to spend quality time but you will also save a hell lot of money. Opt-out of email subscriptions for shopping websites, especially just before a festival. Pretty simple, right?
Addictions come easy to you
No, we are not talking about being addicted to vices such as drinking and smoking, but the other little things in life. Be it the latte from the expensive coffee shop or lunch from the pricey restaurant, you don’t realise when you got into the habit of ordering them daily. Are you an obsessive bookworm? Then you are likely to have the habit of shopping for books like a maniac. There are numerous such things, which don’t cost a bomb on their own but can burn a hole in your pocket if you are addicted to them, over and over again. For example, fridge magnets, crockery, household items such as lamps or quilts, bags and much more.
Our solution: Addiction to anything is never good as it only spells doom. But the fact that you are reading our solution means that you have already taken the first step. So, give yourself a pat on the back and read on. Track your daily expenses. Carry only enough cash to manage the day, so that you don’t spend on the addictions. If you live with your partner or family, ask them to reset the passwords to all your banking accounts and Credit Cards. This will help you to stay away from ordering things online. Smart, eh?
No financial goals
Does ‘laid-back’ describe you the best? Being laid-back is not all that bad as long as you don’t apply the same attitude to your finances. Yes, really! Whenever your salary is credited, do you just go with the flow every month, without listing down your expenses and investments? Living a life without any financial goals and financial plans is absolutely wasteful. Also, if you are investing but aimlessly, you aren’t quite on the right financial track, buddy. If you wish to be successful, you need to set financial goals, chalk out financial plans and work on them, so that you can achieve what you wish to.
Our solution: You can seek help from a professional financial advisor to help you achieve your financial goals. You should certainly set a daily spend limit and follow it so that you can invest smartly. While investing, make sure that you have a diverse portfolio. So, even if one of your investments don’t work, you will have another to fall back on. Trust the advice of financial professionals instead of your close ones, as they are more likely to help you achieve your financial goals as planned.
Well, you seem to have read the common behaviours that could wreck your financial health. If you relate to one or more of the above-mentioned points, you certainly need to turn the tables now. It’s never too late, trust us. To sum it all up, you need to stop comparing yourself to others, set financial goals, chalk out a plan, follow it, control the urge to shop, resist the temptation to give in to your cravings and you will save a lot of money. It’s that simple.
Now that you seem ready to take the next step, how about exploring some financial products that you can invest in? Choose the one that best suits your needs, budget and gives good returns. Go ahead and check out our awesome offers!