10 Commitments You Should Make for Your Own Financial Success

by Ron Haynes

What has more power, a resolution, a goal, or a commitment? You can “resolve” to go to Atlanta some day or have a “goal” of going to Atlanta, but if you make a “commitment,” well, that’s different. If I ask you about your plans for the weekend you’re supposed to go to Atlanta, you’ll say, “Oh, I’m going to Atlanta that weekend.” And THAT is THAT. You’re committed. You know you’re going. There’s no doubt. You don’t make contingency plans in case you don’t make it to the airport. No. You WILL be at the airport.

So, lets make a commitment. Let’s make 10 commitments — all to your own financial success. By making these “commitments,” well, you’re committed! So, let’s MAKE them!

1. Commit to spend less. Spending less is the first commitment that you’ll need to make to insure your personal financial success. Actively SEEK ways to spend less. Commit to discovering ways to save money.

2. Commit to earning more. What areas of your life could produce more income? Could you find ways to generate more money? Commit to asking for a higher salary. Commit to starting a small business that will put more cash in your pocket.

3. Commit to having adequate insurance. Life, medical, disability, automobile, and homeowners insurance all are needed to protect your assets. Commit to having the adequate amount of insurance so that you don’t lose everything in one fell swoop.

4. Commit to investing wisely. Don’t chase returns or fall for scams. Invest in things and companies you truly understand, that have a moat, that have great managers in charge, and that are priced on sale with a margin of safety. If you don’t have the time or inclination to research individual companies, admit it and stick with index funds or reasonable ETF’s.

5. Commit to using free money. If your employer offers ANY type of company match on a retirement plan, use it. Other areas where the money is free are coupons, cash back credit card reward programs, and other programs with free money.

6. Commit to knowing what you want. Know your goals and where you want to be in the future. Make the decision to get there. No matter what. Period.

7. Commit to educating yourself. Educate yourself in your occupation. Educate yourself as a form of insurance if your job is in jeopardy. Educate yourself on investing. Educate yourself on money. Educate yourself on your credit score. Educate yourself just to expand your mind and keep your brain from turning to mush.

8. Commit to avoiding high interest credit. No matter the source, high interest debt is a financial killer. You cannot get ahead if you’re paying someone else high interest rates to use their money…especially if you’re buying “stuff.”

9. Commit to learning to negotiate. Negotiation isn’t just for unions and management, it’s for employees and job candidates, it’s for car and home buyers, for buying washers and dryers, and kitchen remodels, and many other items. If you can spend 30 minutes negotiating a savings of $50 on a single item, you were making over $100 (since you’re paying with after tax dollars), so learn some negotiation skills.

10. Commit to giving. Giving is like planting seeds. If you want to harvest love, what do you plant? Love. If you want to harvest friends, what do you plant? Friendship. If you want to harvest money, what should you plant? Money. Giving releases you from the love of money and allows you to be a blessing in the lives of others.

Make these commitments. Decide that this is where you’re going and that no matter what, you’re going to arrive.

Note: This post was included in The Carnival of Personal Finance #161 at Budgeting Babe. Thanks!

[tags]commit, money, commitment, educate, insurance, commitments, financial, giving, harvest, high, interest, spend[/tags]

About the author

Ron Haynes has written 1001 articles on The Wisdom Journal.


The founder and editor of The Wisdom Journal in 2007, Ron has worked in banking, distribution, retail, and upper management for companies ranging in size from small startups to multi-billion dollar corporations. He graduated Suma Cum Laude from a top MBA program and currently is a Human Resources and Management consultant, helping companies know how employees will behave in varying situations and what motivates them to action, assisting firms in identifying top talent, and coaching managers and employees on how to better communicate and make the workplace MUCH more enjoyable. If you'd like help in these areas, contact Ron using the contact form at the top of this page or at 870-761-7881.


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{ 7 comments }

That One Caveman

I would like to submit an 11th commitment for consideration: Commit to avoiding “stuff”. (This could also serve as a sub-point under #1 – Commit to spend less.)

A lot of the debt pains I’ve seen are from people who have spent all their money in pursuit of “stuff” and then kept feeding money to the beast by continually upgrading/replacing the “stuff” until they finally have to pay more for storing their “stuff”.

Until recently, my “stuff” was computer parts. It cost me a lot to acquire parts that I thought I might need someday and I had to keep replacing the parts as they grew obsolete or broke. By owning so many computers, I felt obligated to maintain them and spend whatever was necessary to keep them running in prime form. Now that I’ve gotten rid of most of the parts and a few of the computers, I have more room, I spend less on electricity, and I have less to worry about (at least on that front).

Ron

#That One Caveman→
Great addition to the list! Stuff just seems to accumulate and we want to hold on to it for some crazy reason. Mostly because “I might need it later.” The truth is, if you haven’t looked at something, anything, for more than 18 months, you might as well get rid of it!

That One Caveman

I agree, with the exception of baby-related items when you know you’ll be having more children.

Most of our stuff was bought at yard sales at huge discounts from parents who waited way too long to give up their items after their children outgrew them, but we kept everything that my daughter outgrew since we knew there would be at least one more following her (and, of course, there already is). Now, once we declare that we’re done having children, we’ll start eliminating our stockpiles by handing them off to the next young couple starting out a family.

Marc and Angel Hack Life

#7 Education… by far the biggest proponent of success, financially and otherwise.

Well stated! ;-)

Pinyo

The 10 commandments for financial success. :smile:

Sara at On Simplicity

This is fantastic. And I think “commitment” is the ideal word. Dreaming about spending less and earning more won’t get us anywhere. We’ve got to be committed to taking action.

I love #6: knowing what you want. All of the others are pretty much impossible without this one.

Ron

#Sara at On Simplicity→
Hey, thanks for dropping by and commenting! You’re absolutely right…#6 (Knowing what you want) is crucial. Why always trumps How.

Off to check your blog!

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