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take a bite out of your expenses for BIGG Success

How to Control Your Finances in 3 Simple Steps

take a bite out of your expenses for BIGG Success

How can you take control of your personal finances?

Look for the low-hanging fruit!

Step 1: Take a bite

Pick one of your biggest, optional expenses and take a bite out it. Let’s take eating out as an example.

You don’t need to eliminate it altogether. Just reduce the amount you spend a little bit…say ten percent.

Let’s say you eat out ten times a month. You go to really nice restaurants. You order either an appetizer or a dessert each time.

You may:

  • Opt for staying in one of the ten times
  • Order a less expensive entrée two or three of the ten times
  • Go to a lower-priced restaurant two or three of the ten times
  • Don’t order an appetizer or a dessert five of the ten times

It doesn’t matter what you do. Just do something to start harvesting some extra money immediately.

Step 2: Don’t let it spoil

So now you have picked some low-hanging fruit. What do you do with it?

This is really important because, if you let it sit around too long, it will spoil. It will be used for something that doesn’t advance you toward BIGG success.

So use the money you save in Step 1 to:

  • shore up your emergency fund
  • pay down debt
  • PREFUND purchases

Start with the emergency fund so you’ll have the cash you need when reality bites. You won’t have to rely on a credit card or some special financing deal. How good will that feel?

Once you have six months in your emergency fund, you’re ready to start paying down your debt. Can you imagine not having any debt? Month by month, you’ll see it coming true.

When your debt is gone, use the extra money (and the money you’re saving from payments on debt that doesn’t exist anymore) to PREFUND future purchases. So instead of financing them, you’ll have the cash to pay for them on the spot!

Step 3: Take another bite!

Once you’ve fully digested the first bite we discussed in Step 1, repeat the process again. You may take another bite out of the same expense or pick another one.

Don’t fret about your money woes. Take action with these three simple steps! You’ll soon feel a sense of control over your personal finances. It leads to BIGG success!

Image in this post from stock.xchng

Does Your Career Affect Your Lifestyle or Vice Versa?

linkedHere’s a story we’ve been told our whole life:

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You choose a career.
You get a job.
It pays the bills.
Life is good.
You live happily ever after.
If you’re lucky. Because …

If you’re lucky, you love your job.
If you’re lucky, your work is stimulating.
If you’re lucky, there is room for growth in your chosen career. 
If you’re lucky, you earn enough from your job to support your desired lifestyle.
If you’re lucky, your job also affords you time to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
If you’re lucky, you realize that luck is only a small part of all of these things.

As the old saying goes, “It’s better to be lucky than smart.”

Lifestyle costs affect career decisions
However, smart decisions often increase your chances of getting lucky. And who doesn’t like to get lucky?

You get a job to support your lifestyle. But how does your lifestyle affect your career?

  • If the costs of your lifestyle put too much of a demand on how much you have to make, you may have to take a job that you don’t love just to pay for your lifestyle.
  • If your lifestyle consumes every penny you make, you may have to jump at the first offer that comes along instead of being able to select the job that fits you best.
  • You may have to take a job that takes up all of your time. You have no time to do anything else including things you love to do or spending time with people you love.

Find harmony between the two
The two are completely interdependent. Your career choices affect your lifestyle. That’s certainly true. But the piece that’s missing is that your lifestyle also affects your career decisions.

In other words, how you spend your money may determine how you earn money.

Bigg success is life on your own terms. The five elements of bigg success are money, time, growth, work and play. The bigg idea behind bigg success is that there is synergy between these five elements.

You are the entrepreneur of your life. It’s implicit in our definition of bigg success. You and you alone are in charge. Successful entrepreneurs understand that their business finances and their personal finances are linked.

Their business has to make enough money support them. But that’s only half the story. They also have to be careful that they don’t put too much of a burden on the business with their personal financial decisions.

Even if you aren’t an entrepreneur in the traditional sense, it’s helpful if you see yourself in business for yourself. You may have just one customer – your employer. Your lifestyle affects your career and your career affects your lifestyle. Find the harmony between them and you’ll find bigg success!

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Thanks for reading our post today. Please join us next time when we discuss the one thing you need to face challenges with confidence. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
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(Image in today's post by shho)

A Technique to Cut Costs

spendingHere’s a concept that business owners often struggle to really understand: Every penny you spend is an investment.

We’re used to seeing investments show up on our Balance Sheet. We buy a new computer and we see it added there.

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When we spend money on advertising or office supplies, it shows up on our Income Statement rather than our Balance Sheet.

But we’re still spending money. It’s an investment for the purpose of increasing our sales.

The financial statement on which it shows up on is based on accounting rules. We have to understand that we are spending the money with the purpose of increasing sales.

Interdependence of business and personal finances

While we say business owners, this concept applies to our personal finances as well.

As a business owner, particularly a business owner who owns 100% of your firm, your business finances and personal finances are completely linked.

Not in a legal sense – you’ll want to talk with your attorney to select the right entity for your company – but in a philosophical sense.

Your business has to do well or it will affect your personal finances. We all get that.

What a lot of people forget is that their standard of living may affect their business. If you spend too much personally, you put more of a burden on your business to produce more income for you to take out of the business. It can really add to the pressure, particularly for a start-up business.

In our personal lives, every penny we spend should add to our happiness. If it doesn’t, it’s not a worthwhile expenditure.

Start from scratch

There’s a technique that helps you decide if the returns you’re getting are sufficient. It’s called zero-based budgeting.

For every line item on your Income Statement, you assume you don’t need to spend any money. Then you add to it for the outlays you determine will give you the return you desire.

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georgeI do this in my businesses every three years. Costs can creep in. You commit to this service or that program. It all adds up. Instead of doing it all every three years, you may pick a few line items every year for review. Just make sure you cycle through all of them every few years or so.

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marylynnLet’s take an example that applies to our businesses and our personal lives – our cell phone. I might ask myself: Do I need the package I currently have or could I cut back? Do I need unlimited texting?

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You’ll also consider alternatives. If you weren’t spending this amount of money on your cell phone, what might you spend it on? You might find you could increase sales faster or be a lot happier if you spent this money on another thing.

You might decide to increase your long-term happiness and invest this newfound money. That may make you happier now and then.

By justifying the expense all over again, away from the emotional point of purchase, you’ll spend your money on what you really want. You’ll get the returns you seek. That’s bigg success.

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Get the tips and tools you need to be a BIGG success.
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!

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Thanks for the gift of your time today. Please join us next time when we ask, “Have you evolved enough?” Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Subscribe to The Bigg Success Show in iTunes. 

Subscribe to the Bigg Success feed.

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file:
http://media.libsyn.com/media/biggsuccess/00492-093009.mp3

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For example, large companies and small companies use different financial models. Large companies generally have the ability to raise large amounts of money when they need it.

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For small companies, it’s much more difficult. So it’s more critical for small business owners to watch their cash flow. For us as individuals, our financial model is much closer to the entrepreneur’s.

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We’re going to take a little different tack today than we have with the last two shows. We’re going to talk about two specific things we need to know when it comes to arithmetic.

These two things both involve our personal finances. That’s why they’re so important.
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