5 Small Habits That Could Help You to Make More Money

Matt Lillywhite

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Rising above the poverty line and achieving financial freedom are things that I never thought would happen.

I grew up in a working-class family with a single mom. The odds of building wealth and living a happy life were basically zero. Or at least, that’s what I thought. But one day, a small mindset shift created a massive difference in the trajectory of my financial future.

It was a Friday evening. I was broke and my self-esteem was at an all-time low. I looked in the mirror and said to myself that I was prepared to do whatever it takes to improve my life. So, I researched several habits of wealthy people and began to implement them.

At first, it was difficult. It took a while to see any meaningful level of improvement change since it doesn’t happen overnight. But I eventually managed to break the cycle of generational poverty by increasing my income and implementing better financial habits. My life is so much better now.

If you’re like my past self and want to improve your financial situation, here are several things you can do:

1. Fall In Love With Personal Finance

Set aside a few minutes to learn something new every day. For example, you might read a few pages of a book on real estate or the stock market. Alternatively, you may choose to listen to podcasts that discuss the importance of building wealth.

At first, I was reluctant to do this. I didn’t see the point and thought it would be a complete waste of time. But once I implemented financial education into my daily routine, I quickly found myself adopting better spending habits. Quoting an article published by the National Bank of Canada:

“It’s important to note that being in good financial health doesn’t mean being rich. Rather, it means being aware of your situation and having a plan to improve it; that’s already less stressful than burying your head in the sand. Peace of mind is one of the advantages of financial literacy.”

When you make personal finance fun and enjoyable, you’ll naturally begin to care about it a lot more. And obviously, paying close attention to your financial situation is certainly an excellent place to begin the process of building wealth.

2. Prepare Yourself For Worst-Case Scenarios

According to data published by CNBC, “fewer than 4 in 10 people have enough savings to pay for an unexpected $1,000 expense in cash. The rest would have to borrow, use a credit card or take out a personal loan.”

It’s much easier to sleep at night when you know that you can afford an emergency expense of a few hundred (or thousand) dollars. For example, a medical bill or a last-minute flight to visit a dying relative.

Now, you’re probably wondering how to begin the process of preparing yourself for a worst-case scenario. The answer is simple: Contribute whatever you can to a dedicated fund each month.

For example, I put approximately $500 into my worst-case scenario fund per month. And since I’ve been doing it for a long time, I now have more than enough money to cover pretty much any emergency expense.

If you don’t have a lot of money to contribute towards a fund, that’s okay. Just put in $10 per week, or whatever you can afford. After all, a little bit of progress is better than none at all.

3. Identify And Eliminate Your Bad Spending Habits

It doesn’t matter how much money you make. Instead, try to focus on how much you keep in your bank account at the end of each month. After all, many people win the lottery and declare bankruptcy due to terrible spending habits and a lack of financial education.

You won’t fix your bad habits until you can recognize and identify them. So whenever you get a chance, look at your bank statement for the last 90 days and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Where can I cut back on my spending?
  • What can I do to reduce my expenses by (at least) 10%?
  • What bad spending habits can I eliminate to improve my finances?

Asking those questions helped me to gain clarity on my financial situation and where I wanted to be in the future. Hopefully, they will do the same for you, too.

4. Build Additional Streams Of Income

Let me tell you something that might be a hard pill for you to swallow. If you rely on one source of income to provide for yourself (and your family), you’re setting yourself up for financial failure.

The reason? An income stream can disappear at any time. Many people thought they were in a stable job until the Covid-19 pandemic hit. But one day, they woke up to discover that they were out of work and would no longer be receiving a regular paycheck. So, they had to rely on savings and unemployment benefits just to get by.

If you want to improve your financial future, building multiple income streams is certainly worth considering. Because if one disappears (for whatever reason), you’ll have peace of mind knowing that you can still put food on the table and have a roof over your head.

5. Embrace The Art Of Getting Rich Slowly

Look, you’re not going to get rich quick. Instead, it’ll probably take several years (or even decades) to build a meaningful amount of wealth. As J.D. Roth writes in Forbes:

“The most successful folks are those who work longest and hardest at things they love to do. So try to find ways to make frugality fun, and recognize that you’re in this for the long haul. You’re making a lifestyle change, not looking for a quick fix.”

I used to be impatient. So as you can imagine, it took me a long time to embrace the art of getting rich slowly. But once I did, my entire life changed for the better.

I adjusted every aspect of my daily routine to create long-term health, wealth, and success. After all, I recognized that positive change would only happen if I made continual progress each day towards a better future.

So, I began eating healthier foods and going on long walks to improve my health & fitness. I also started reading a few pages of a book each evening to learn about new topics. Although those habits might seem small, they had a massive impact on my ability to build a better life. As Darren Hardy writes in his book, The Compound Effect:

“Since your outcomes are all a result of your moment-to-moment choices, you have incredible power to change your life by changing those choices. Step by step, day by day, your choices will shape your actions until they become habits, where practice makes them permanent.”

Fall in love with personal finance. Prepare yourself for worst-case scenarios. Identify and eliminate your bad spending habits. Build additional streams of income. Embrace the art of getting rich slowly.

If you want to build wealth, focus on implementing the above habits that will enable you to achieve your goals. Because as long as you can put one foot in front of the other, you’ll eventually reach your desired destination.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational and entertainment purposes only. It should not be considered professional financial or legal advice.

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