As we usher in the year 2016 with an optimistic outlook for a bright future, we must have a
decisive game plan to create a more prosperous New Year. Instead of just rehashing wishful resolutions from past years, make a concerted effort to attain these specific financial objectives:
1. A S.M.A.R.T. goal
It’s been said that ‘a promise is a comfort to a fool’; and some people believe that resolutions are foolish wishes that bring cold comfort. Your dreams may seem impossible to achieve if you don’t convert your ideas into specific, measurable, actionable, relevant and time-based goals.
Select one dream that would make the biggest difference in your life. Write it down precisely, expressing how you would measure it, take action on it and know when it was complete. Consider all the steps you need to take every day to realise your goal and persevere until you accomplish it. Continue reading 7 Money Must-Haves for 2016
Life is like a box of chocolates, as actor Tom Hanks memorably said in the movie Forrest Gump; you can never be certain what types you’re going to get until you open the box. Life can indeed be full of surprises, but unlike a package of sweets, not all of the components may be pleasant.
To live to the fullest, the irony is that you must accept the various risks which life can bring. Risk is simply the possibility that your plans may not turn out in the way you hoped. Instead of obtaining the positive results that you expect from your efforts, you can actually receive a negative outcome.
To be financially secure, you must find ways of spreading the risks that life may bring so that you don’t have to absorb them all by yourself. To do this, you need to put in place certain strategies which will prevent you from having to deal with the full financial cost of undesirable life events. Continue reading A Bridge Over Troubled Financial Waters
From June to November, many in Jamaica keep an anxious watch for signs of an impending storm. During the months of the annual hurricane season, we are more likely to see these dangerous weather systems developing in the tropical waters which surround our island.
If one of the ominous cloud formations appears to be drifting in Jamaica’s direction, people often think about preparing for the possible arrival of heavy rains and wind. However, if we are spared the onslaught of bad weather, some persons will simply abandon their plans until the next scare.
The reality is that we are always faced with the potential of an emergency occurring at any time. As our Jamaican proverb of the week states, “Trouble nuh set like rain.” While a downpour is always preceded by gathering dark clouds, a major calamity can take place in your life without warning. Continue reading Jamaican Style Money Guide: Trouble Nuh Set Like Rain
Last week we discussed the role that saving plays in creating a secure financial future. Saving helps you to develop the discipline required for money success; experience money accumulation, not just money attrition; amass emergency funds; and build a solid base to boost your investments.
An important part of planning for your finances involves determining areas of risk which could potentially jeopardise your ability to realise your objectives. Once you have identified these factors, you need to implement strategies to avoid or mitigate these problems as best as possible.
Like any other aspect of your finances, your savings are subject to certain dynamics which can put your money at risk. Let’s examine some of the various situations and challenges which have the potential of crippling your savings goals. Continue reading Defending Your Savings
Your financial wealth is not determined solely by the amount of money you have in your savings account; the value of the assets you have accumulated over time is another factor. Many people believe that purchasing a home would be an important acquisition that would boost their net worth.
Owning a property can provide you with a physical sanctuary that will give you the peace of mind to excel in your other financial endeavours. Knowing that you and your family will always have a place to call home can also give you the impetus to work harder to protect this important legacy.
Whether you direct your money into the ownership of property, place funds in formal investment options, or invest your resources in operating your own business, it is important to consider all the possible challenges that could arise which could jeopardise the preservation of your wealth. Continue reading Safeguarding Your Property
Last week we looked at the connection between wealth and wellness, noting that ill health can jeopardise your finances. Sickness can decrease your work output, deplete your savings and destroy your plans for the future. You need to have good health to pursue great wealth.
Since wealth can be defined as a “plentiful source of a particular desirable thing”, you could say that good health is a form of prosperity in itself. Whether you have an income shortfall or you have significant net worth, you must preserve your health if you want to be truly financially secure.
Very often, persons will explain that a shortage of time and/or money hinders them from pursuing healthy lifestyles. Let’s look at some of the common excuses and outline some strategies that can help you to find the right balance between managing your wealth and maintaining your health. Continue reading Maintaining your health
For a few years now, I have been neglecting my health, mainly because I have been working hard to solve my financial problems. This has caused health problems such as fatigue, sleep deprivation and weight gain. How can I achieve financial stability without jeopardising my health? — Reader
In today’s fast-paced society, many of us are faced with the challenge of balancing work, home, school and service responsibilities. Trying to complete all these conflicting tasks can lead some people to over-schedule themselves and ignore the need for rest and relaxation in their daily agendas.
If you are going at a frenetic pace to make ends meet, generate extra funds to pay off debt or save for an important goal, then you may readily find excuses for working too hard. However, if your mantra is ‘no pain – no gain’, you might actually be harming your health and weakening your wealth.
Financial success is not just about having more than enough money to cover your needs and achieve your goals; good health is an integral component of your overall wealth. In fact, your mental, physical and emotional well-being all impact your ability to attain financial wellness. Continue reading Good Health, Great Wealth
Last week we discussed the significance of life, pointing out that the amount of income you create and the sum of your possessions are not the only determinants of your true value as a person. The positive impact that you make on the lives of others can be a key indicator of your real worth.
I believe that each person has unlimited potential to achieve great things and make a tremendous difference to the world. However, most people never really tap into their latent abilities and may never discover and accomplish everything that they were intended to do during their lifetime.
Whether you decide to experience your life to its fullest or you’re content to pass your time without fulfilling your life’s purpose, your existence on this earth has a value that needs to be protected. While your life is really priceless, it is possible to put a price tag on the contribution you make to other people. Continue reading Preserving Your Life
Fear has been described in the acronym False Evidence Appearing Real, indicating that very often the thing you fear is not factual, but just based on some perception in your mind. Sometimes you may even be embarrassed about some of the strange thoughts that secretly cause you to be fearful.
Fears about money can leave you feeling vaguely uncomfortable about your finances, intensely anxious about your future prospects, or send you into full-blown panic mode. Even if your fears may be irrational they can cripple you mentally and physically and prevent you from actualising your goals.
Many financial anxieties may stem from your concerns about losing something important that money can provide, while certain types of financial mistakes can be serious enough to warrant extreme distress. Let’s look at some common financial fears and simple strategies which can help you to deal with them. Continue reading Financial Fears
Historically, the first day of May was celebrated around the world with activities, including the crowning of the May Queen and dancing around a maypole. In modern times, the May Day festival has been merged with the Easter holidays, and it is no longer popular in most countries.
Apart from its association with ancient celebrations, the term ‘mayday’ has a less pleasant meaning. Mayday is used as a signal to indicate that a vessel such as a boat or aeroplane is facing a serious emergency. It was coined because it sounded like the French expression, ‘m’aider,’ which means ‘help me.’
When sudden disaster strikes
Two recent tragic events affecting air and sea travel made me reflect on the mayday distress signal. The mysterious disappearance of Malaysian Air Flight 370, with hundreds of passengers onboard, and the sinking of the South Korean ferry demonstrated how a routine journey can quickly turn into disaster.
Although we may not like to think about it, in the twinkling of an eye our lives can go into a negative tailspin from which it can be very difficult to recover. Just like those persons who embark on a voyage, we need to make adequate preparations to protect ourselves from the uncertainties that surround us. Continue reading Money Mayday