How to Manage Your Money – Budgeting, Saving, and Investing

Managing your money can be accomplished by creating a spreadsheet of income and expenses, cutting back on purchases, saving, and investing.

If you are unable to manage your money, purchase frivolous things, and don’t save enough for essentials, then this information will greatly benefit you. While money doesn’t necessarily bring happiness, the lack of money can bring sadness. Being devoid of money, unable to pay for food and shelter, and other essentials you need, causes emotional turmoil and stress.

Imagine a scenario, which could possibly describe you or someone you know. A single mother with three kids who is working multiple jobs and can barely pay the bills. Is she squandering money? Is she not making enough because her jobs pay only minimum wage? Are her shelter expenses too high? What other factors are at play that she is not able to pay for herself and the kids? When we look at this example, we realize that there are a lot of unknowns. She is a single mother, raising children, who may make over the amount needed to apply for benefits and financial assistance, but she is still struggling. Why is that?

It is true that some of the hardest jobs don’t pay much of anything. Retail jobs are among the most dreadful that pay minimum wage. These jobs require no skills, which is why it’s justified that they don’t pay much. But, the amount of labor that people put in are worth far more than minimum wage. It’s tough working for so many hours, getting a short break, dealing with stressful customers, and getting so little in return. But a rule to live by is to never compare yourself to others. Just because someone has a higher paying job, and seems to work less than you do, has consistent hours, and gets longer for lunch, doesn’t mean you should make that comparison. It is not fair, so work and focus on yourself and how you can get into a successful position.

The first place to sort out your finances is your mindset. How do you feel about money at this present moment? Do you get paid and think, “This is not enough?” Or does a friend give you some money and you are thinking, “How will this pay for what I need?” Or do you have the mindset of, “I make so little. I live paycheck to paycheck.” If that is the way you think, then that is the biggest thing holding you back from making money. Why? Because your attitude about the money you make is that it’s not good enough, that you need more.

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In order to combat this, learn to be grateful. If you find a penny on the ground, sure it may not seem like much, but it’s 1ยข more than what you had. Your attitude about money, and being grateful for it, will change the way money comes into your life.

Next is to keep track of all your income and expenses. How much are you making, and from what sources, and where is it going? You will be surprised how much cutting your daily cup of coffee will save you. So, do not overlook these things. Create a spreadsheet of all your income and expenses that shows how much you are spending and making each month, and on what, and what your end of month totals are. I have already started this process for you and have provided a link to a spreadsheet I’ve been using for years to manage my money. Alter it to your liking and see the areas that need to be refined and could save you money.

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After you look at the spreadsheet, you may have plenty of money leftover. What will you use it on? You may want to spend it, but wouldn’t you want that money to work for you to make even more money? You can, by saving and investing your excess money.

Most of us have a savings account with a local bank, but did you know that there are plenty of online-only banks that offer far higher interest rates that you can actually make decent money? These banks have no fees, and reimburse you ATM fees. Using a mobile app, you can take a photo of your check to deposit money into your account. High interest accounts also apply to checking accounts, known as hybrid checking/savings accounts. It has the high interest of a savings account, without the withdrawal limit, and a debit card. I personally prefer Radius Bank (now LendingClub Bank) for checking and free ATM rebates. And I like Vio Bank for high yielding savings. The rates will vary from time to time due to rate cuts and the economy, but even at a low percentage, it’s still higher than local branches. So put some money away and earn that interest. Who knows, your interest each month could end up paying for a low cost subscription you have.

And lastly, and my favorite, is investing. This term may be intimidating to some, but many others know how much you can grow your account by investing. This includes real estate investing, to putting money into a long-term retirement account that usually is put in stocks, bonds, and funds. There is more risk when it comes to investing, but if you are not planning on touching this money for several decades, then your money will grow.

Put a little bit aside each paycheck. It doesn’t matter if it’s $100 or $5. Put some away because your future self, and possibly even kids and grandkids, will be grateful for how much that small amount each month went a long way.

If you want to make money in the stock market, looking to invest for long term growth, it’s important to invest in stocks that tend to grow year after year, despite a recession, and pay dividends. Some excellent examples are Apple and Microsoft. But there are so many more companies. I personally have been using M1 Finance which allows you to create a pie of stocks to invest in, and the money you invest in your account will be dispersed into these companies. We can each get $10 in our accounts by using my affiliate link.

Furthermore, if you are good with numbers, charts, and trends, maybe stock trading is something that’ll appeal to you. This is short-term stock trading that can be bought and sold on the same day, or up to a few weeks, to make a profit. I also do this daily, and my preferred platform is Webull, which if you use my affiliate link, it can get you a free stock valued up to $1400. You can practice stock trading with this app to better your skills. I have also used Robinhood, which has more basic functionality, so check out my affiliate link for that too to get a free stock.

Whatever you decide to do with your money, please be aware that it is valuable and should be treated as such. Spend it on only the things you need, and invest the rest to make even more so you are financially comfortable during tough economic times, or unexpected events.

Let me know how this works for you. Have a great day!

Additional Info

I’ve always been good with my money, but I’ve also made plenty of purchases that I didn’t need. Nevertheless, I’ve managed my money well and have used what I have to grow my account more. I value every penny I receive as it is a penny more than I had before.

I started putting my money in a high interest bank account and was getting far more money in a single month than I was an entire year at my local branch. I then started putting money into an investment account for long term growth and have seen significant gains as well. Even started trading stocks and have made a small amount from that.

Published: (updated: )

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About the Author

Autumn Asphodel
Autumn Asphodel helps others live a better life through natural means, hard work, and dedication.

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