It is nearing that time where we will be filing our taxes and looking forward to receiving that tax refund check. While it is enticing to see yourself relaxing in your favorite comforter and watching the Super Bowl in the latest, greatest high-definition TV, it is time to change our mindset and envision a life of financial prosperity. Let’s build up our wealth and minimize our debt. Certainly, income is a significant barrier to meeting our financial goals, but making the necessary lifestyle adjustments can allow anyone to be prosperous.
Reaching prosperity means being the 4 Ps:
- Be positive.
- Be proactive.
- Be persistent.
- Be protective.
Being positive means not internalizing your current situation. With a tough economy, the lives of many Americans have been disrupted. Even though our income flows might be diminishing, bills always appear to be expanding. Instead of being discouraged, be encouraged by reminding yourself of where you will be in the near future. By constantly seeing victory over your monetary problems, you will find yourself worrying less about your present situation and working more toward overcoming life’s obstacles.
Being proactive means establishing a course of action that will help you deal with the uncertainties of life. We need to anticipate problems and emergencies that can and do arise. During those rare times of relative peace and tranquility, do not relax, but rather institute a budgeting plan where you prioritize needs and wants. As an example, fast food establishments are quick and convenient, but resist those urges. Instead, take the time to purchase groceries when you first get paid and consistently prepare home-made meals. By doing this, you will not only shrink your waistline, but expand room for additional spending on other household essentials.
Being persistent means developing a mental toughness to maintain focus when emergencies and challenges occur. At the beginning, it is always difficult to change our life patterns. When the car breaks down, resist the urge to use the credit card and find ways to downsize our lifestyle temporarily. Tough choices must be made and that can involve making less use of cable, cell phones, and other entertainment options. Rather than traveling all the way to Atlanta to see the Falcons, consider going downtown to watch the championship-crowned Albany Panthers next year. Successfully navigating through the difficulties of life will toughen you up and enhance your life in the long run.
Being protective means securing the futures of yourself and family through appropriate planning. We need to think beyond the end of the day, week, or even month. We will not be working forever, living forever, or have unlimited time to prepare for rising college tuition for our children. A long-term, multifaceted approach to saving must be incorporated in your budget, so plan early and consistently. Work closely with a licensed financial professional that will point you toward responsible investment products that will meet your various needs.
If you desire prosperity in your life, all you need to do is embrace the 4 Ps!