At the risk of sounding like a wet blanket for those of you who follow me elsewhere in the blogosphere, I’m going through a tough time personally right now. The events of the past week have left me stunned, emotional, and questioning way too many things. After writing a post on The Happy Homeowner about how I refuse to sit complacently and let things happen to me without putting up a fight to come out stronger and better in the end, I realized that there’s one thing I’m not.
I’m not scared.
Yes, I’m nervous about the fact that I can no longer afford the beautiful condo I’ve worked so hard to have, but I’m not scared. As someone who prides herself on moving forward positively no matter what life throws my way, I understand that there is no room for fear when action is required. Yes, I’m heart-broken over an unexpected breakup. I’m also a bit PO’ed at the Google Gods for laying the smack down on a site I work for–a site that provided one of my largest, consistent sources of income until it had to be cut due to the latest Penguin update. But I’m not scared because I believe in my ability to persevere, to hustle when needed, and to make some lemonade out of all these lemons that are literally knocking me upside the head this week.
Fear and Finances Don’t Mix
The more I think about my next steps, the more I realize that fear hasn’t had a place in my plan to successfully manage my finances for quite some time. I’m the girl who was once nearly homeless and penniless, but I pulled myself through. I was drowning in a mountain of debt, but like Derek, I paid that off and haven’t looked back since. Throughout all of those tough times when money was tight and stress levels were high, I never let fear get in the way of moving myself forward.
Fear has no place in our finances because it strips us of our ability to make informed decisions and it blinds us from certain realities. It’s nearly impossible to make rational decisions when fear is in the driver’s seat, so why not leave it at home when we venture off on our journey?
Shed Your Fear, Take Control of Your Money
If you’re facing your own tough times, be steadfast with your ability to shed your fears. Doing so is one of the easiest ways to control your finances and the situation–rather than them controlling you. If you have a large debt looming over you, don’t let fear cause you to shirk the responsibility of paying it back–open those statements, negotiate those payments and if you have to, answer those calls. If you’re watching an investment account fluctuate wildly, don’t panic when things seem low and sell off at a loss.
Be Proactive Rather than Reactive
As you work to balance the emotional highs and lows that stressful financial experiences and situations bring to your life, work hard to create a plan for yourself. Imagine the various contingencies or outcomes and plan for them. By having your plan in place, you’ll feel much more confident in your ability to roll with the punches. You’ll also gain control over the situation which will bolster your motivation to keep chipping away. Remember that slow and steady does win the race. And by kicking your fears to the curb, you’re opening your budget and life to limitless possibilities.
How do you manage your money when life gets stressful?
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.