Feeling Overwhelmed with Retirement?

Retirement is a large concept.  Even retiring at 65 means you are probably planning for the next twenty-five years.  This is difficult to do.  Think about the past twenty-five years.  Could you have planned on everything that happened in your life? No one knows the future. 

However, when it comes to retirement, you can put money aside to build up the chances of a very good retirement.  Do not compare yourself to others.  Everyone is different.  Various needs, spending habits and dreams mean different money needs.

Also, do not compare your savings to others.  As you can see by the research, the average person nearing retirement has only $12,000 saved for retirement.  We all need to beat the average to have a retirement that has strong underlying financial support.  Start saving now. 




Getting Easier...Or Did I Forget My Wallet?

Not going in stores is getting easier.  Yesterday I found this commitment easiest to keep.  I had left my pocketbook with my money and credit and debit card at home.  Yes, given I was going to a ski area to ski, not shop.  However, the absence of these tangibles meant that there was no dilly dallying on the way home.  No reason to stop anywhere. 

At the ski lodge, there is a wonderful little ski shop.  I literally stood at the entrance and walked in two steps when I remembered my commitment.  Two steps out and I was back on track.  How does one spend a day without a spending while skiing?  Well, since I was volunteering for Vermont Adaptive - a fabulous program - I did not need to pay for my ski day.    But also keeping snacks and a water bottle in the car makes it manageable.  The water bottle can be refilled in the cafeteria and one really can survive for a day without money, especially if they are doing something fun.

The weather was fabulous, the snow soft and the people wonderful.  I will treasure all week the smile on the lucky young man I got to ski with yesterday.  He loves to go fast, do bumps and enjoys the gates.  He will be ready for the Special Olympics next month.

Money had nothing to do with yesterday.  How would you survive a day without money?

Simple New Year's Resolutions

Our intentions are good but sometimes the grandness of the season takes over. We make elaborate promises or set large momentous goals to create change in our lives. 

This year I ask you to consider setting a small and simple money goal for 2015. Here are suggestions to change your behavior and bring some financial order to your life:

·         Create a money folder or basket – both on line and a tangible one at home.  Each piece of mail that arrives related to your money, whether bill or income, drop into the file basket.  Now, even if you have not taken the time to file the information, it will all be in one place when you go looking.

·         Decide to unlink your credit card from your favorite shopping sites.  Yes, that means every time you go to Amazon or QVC or Target, you will have to enter your card information.  This one step will slow down the shopping process and downsize your bill in the process.

·         Balance your checkbook once a month.  Yes, that is right.  People do still balance their checkbooks.  The reason why is clear: People who keep track of their money, actually have more money.

·         Build and enact a giving plan.  Charitable giving tends to be a spontaneous on the fly experience.  Before you can make a decision to give in a heartfelt manner, you have to know how much you can give.  No matter how much you have, you can share some bit with others.  The amount is not important, the sharing is.  Giving from a positive place on a regular basis makes the giving circle complete.  Your choice of charities is personal. 

True change happens one step at a time.  MoneyPeace is a process that allows all of us to feel abundant.  Desire a more peaceful life?  Commit to just one money change listed above or come up with one of your own.  Taking the time to make one change will change you. 

So today you have two simple tasks:

1.       Choose something to change in your money behavior moving forward.

2.       Leave the past behind.  No more excuses, self punishment or negative talk.  We are moving our money into a New Year and a New Place.

Here is to a fresh start in 2015!