Ten Commandments About Money

Ten Commandments About Money

Does your life feel like an action movie? Are you constantly getting shot at, figuratively, careening in high speed chases, falling off cliffs into raging rivers, and facing down roaring monsters? Is your financial life a wreck? Do accidents seem to follow you around?

Ten Commandments about Money

1. Pay your own way. Otherwise you are suffering the indignity of dependence.

2. Get educated. It pays. Take classes. Get a credential. Online courses are often free and include certificates that verify completion. Read books. The Richest Man in Babylon. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, As a Man Thinketh, holy books.

3. Don’t promise more than you can deliver. That’s dishonest. People who do that are fakes.

4. Budget. That means to plan your spending. Then track actual spending. Compare what you spent with what you planned. Use Ace Money Lite to plan and track.

5. Be frugal. Buy stuff cheap. Wait to buy until you have the money. Plan purchases ahead. Find cheaper alternatives. Do without. Eat cheap food. Don’t buy prepared food, fast food, frozen food and restaurant meals. Beware of subscriptions, cable TV contracts, gym memberships and cell phone contracts. Don’t buy big screen TVs, game consoles, exotic pets, guns, ATVs, and DVDs. Pets limit where you can choose to live. Places that allow them are fewer and cost more. Beside, pets eat and get sick. Those things cost.

6. Don’t quit your job until you have found a new job.  If you start a side business, keep your “day job.” Prospect for a better job even while working at a good job. Always be developing your options.

7. Purge from your mind the myth that forty hours of work a week is sufficient. 8-5, M-F was so Detroit, 1950. Rather, plan on 7-6, 5.5 days with ½ hour lunch. Twenty to thirty years of that will be a good start on success. No kidding; it takes a long time of consistently applied true principles to build wealth and security, self-respect and a sterling reputation. Catching up financially from vacation takes a long time. That’s why wise people take vacations from work only sparingly. You can’t afford vacations.

8. If you’ve made mistakes, face them honestly. Admit your debts. Don’t evade them. You can build anew. First you must admit past failures. How else will you avoid repeats? Don’t wallow in sorrow and loathing. Think of these remembrances as courses you’ve taken. Don’t brand yourself a failure because you’ve stumbled. Everyone stumbles.

9. Have a reserve of money for emergencies. Or you’ll feel like a victim, like trouble hunts you down. Emergencies come to everyone.

10. Find a person authorized to receive tithing, a tenth of your income. Pay it. Show gratitude to people and heaven.

Corollaries:

Create opportunities. Advertise. Promote.

Get out of bed early. That requires going to bed on time.

Get out of debt. Stay out of debt. Follow Dave Ramsey’s plan. Daveramsey.com. Don’t buy “on time.” Don’t rent furniture. Don’t lease a car.

Use an envelope system if you have to.

Show gratitude to your boss and co-workers. Inconvenience yourself for them and the customers. Know what they want; provide it. Be courteous and helpful at work.

Always think of the long run. Success takes time.

Show up on time. Sober. Call if you are going to be late. Make up lost time on your own.

Leave cash and checkbooks home. Shred credit cards.

Ride a bike. Walk.

Don’t covet. Don’t expect classy possessions to soothe your lack of self-confidence.

Balance your checkbook monthly. Open your mail.

Pay your bills on time. Put stamps on. Put in mailbox.

Don’t waste time texting, watching TV, surfing the net. Instead, go to skill building classes, read, exercise, recreate with family.

Monitor your cash flow, your revenue stream, your job. In corporate lingo this is called guarding your “cash cow”, whatever brings in the steady revenue.

In business, what is valuable is the franchise. That is what sets your product apart. It’s a brand or a way of doing business. Michael Jordan was a franchise of the Chicago Bulls franchise. Pizza Hut is a franchise, a unique presence in the market. The brand, the unique offering is worth fortunes. Make yourself a franchise, be valuable, make a reputation.

Always be honest. Don’t say you are an expert at some skill if you are not. Candor pays. “I’m not sure how to do that, but I will work hard to learn. I’m open to suggestions. I can find out. It it’s OK with you, I’ll work on it and let you know how I’m coming. I’ll charge appropriately.”

Share your plan with someone who cares about you. Give them progress reports. Share your mistakes so they can help you gather courage to admit, fix, and to avoid them in the future.

Solid money management and earning stability is essential to having loving relationships. Women only trust steady earners. They are freaks for orderliness and predictability. Give it.

Shed the notion that anyone owes you anything, family, friends, your church, the rich, the government. When you are dependent, you’ve lost dignity. Don’t expect gifts and bailouts. There is more dignity living in a cheap car you own outright, in a campground, than lodging in welfare housing or sleeping on the couch of a friend. Who is paying his rent, utilities, garbage, cable, internet?

If you miss three days of work for a sprained ankle or the flu, it will take working overtime for the rest of the month to compensate. Catching up hurts! Better not to incur the loss. Work through the pain.

Do a balance sheet. Total assets. Total debts. Subtract debts from assets. That is your net worth. Not so hot? Make a goal to build it to $___ by making more than you spend. Save and invest the rest.

Take as friends successful people. Emulate. Avoid learning from people who constantly fail. Treat such courteously, respect their dignity and worth, but do not take for companions poor or irresponsible people.

Realize that money doesn’t buy happiness. Even lots of money would not be enough for every eventuality. Life is tenuous and fragile. But without constant, steady, adequate income, you will feel miserable. That is a feeling you can do without.

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One Response

  1. I love your 10 commandments about money! It’s simple, clear and very useful! Keep it up!

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