Sunday, March 26, 2006

Rustic, Rusted Change.

Change is inevitable. In order to survive, we must adopt change into our lifestyle (along with nutrition, relationships, work ethics etc.) What I don't get is how many people WANT change but never try to consciously change. So many habits. So many vices. So many viable options to drain away our lives, our finances, and our health. It's no great secret that the United States as a whole is spiraling into the red pit of international debt!

Change has to come from within.

Last year, I got fed up looking at all the money people throw away in school. Soda cans and loose change litter college campuses everywhere! The irony is that college students are almost always "broke" and in need of some quick bucks. Last week, my daughter and I set about picking up recyclable cans around the campus. We collected 84 cans in total. Quick math: $4.20. Four dollars isn't much in this economy today but this is tax-free money we're talking about here.

Change wise, I found 17 cents while collecting cans that day, bringing the total to 4.37. I am proud of DD because she is understanding the concept of money through bonding with "cheapskate mommy". She has helped me pick out energy saving bulbs, clean up clutter and sell it on ebay and, perform comparison pre-shopping on the internet before I go out to the stores. My ingenious little darling is coming up with business ideas to stir up some more cash flow. She has started her own junior changepot for found money!

Well known family Principle #1:

know how to separate money

If you find money in the street, put it aside from all the other cash you have on hand. When you get paid, pay yourself first for any habit you may have cut out (smoking in my case yields anywhere from $112 to $140 monthly before I pay anyone else). Separate that money and put it into an account or safe. This money grows quickly because we pay habits usually before ANYTHING ELSE- like essential groceries, rent, gas, etc. The key is to change the recipient of your hard earned cash to a plain bank passbook or drab grey box as opposed to Phillip Morris or Lorillard. I am close to having $1K in the bank from this alone.

It's important for you to decide how you want to change your life. You should strive to become financially smart and not depend on accountants or bankers/financial planners to tell you what to do. Ultimately, it's your money and no one will look out for your best interests without some capitalistic interest (even the gov't!)

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