This is the fourth blog post in the Classic Money Habits series.
Prioritize Your Goals
So, which is it? Pay off the house, train for a marathon, or campaign for the prohibition of wearing Ugg boots and shorts?
Pick one. You can try to do all three simultaneously, but be warned, you’ll suck at each.
Dedicate your efforts to a single objective, and work like heck to get ‘er done.
It’s tempting to try to juggle everything you’ve ever wanted to do at once. You want to have it all…right now. I do too. It just doesn’t work.
One of the reasons we fail to see our goals through to completion is we don’t put enough force behind our actions. We try to do too much. And allow ourselves to stress over petty issues that steal our mojo and zap us of our desire to finish what matters.
It feels good to be busy. Busyness makes you feel like you’re going places. But if you’re busy working on the wrong things, you are moving, but you’re running in circles.
I’ve never married, maybe never will. I’m not 100% sold on the institution.
Given my glaring lack of authority on this topic, you can ignore me if you want. It won’t hurt my feelings not one bit.
But even if I don’t know what it’s like to be married, I know a lot of marriages don’t work. I also know money problems often destroy marriages.
For women, your guy doesn’t have to be rich, but, at a minimum, he needs to be able to take care of himself financially. You ain’t his mama.
Call me old fashioned, but a man that refuses to provide for his family is no man at all.
I don’t discriminate. That’s my theory for women too. Should I have a son, I’ll impart the same wisdom on him. Don’t marry a lazy woman. Our path is not linear. No one is guaranteed perfect stability. It sure helps to have a capable partner who’ll support you when times are hard.
Money Isn’t the Answer
A foolproof method to rid yourself of money is to misuse it.
We often turn to our financial resources for that quick fix.
“I have a random problem. Quick! Gimme some money.”
If you have easy access to cash, it may look like the easiest answer. It may look like the fastest answer. But it may not be the only answer or even the best answer.
Look at how much money the United States spends on trying to close the education achievement gap. I’m not saying this isn’t a worth while endeavor, but I do question the efficacy of money being the main source of the solution.
Perhaps the answer involves more sacrifices than we’re willing to make, more demons than we’re willing to face. Just because the answer is hard to accept doesn’t mean it’s the wrong one.
The same goes for personal financial matters. Growing up, I didn’t care that my parents didn’t earn a ton of money. I’m grateful they were loving, present, and sober. If they were the opposite of each of those things, how do you make money effectively address that?