What I Should Have Learned about Finance

Most women know all the “feminine” basics. Housework, basic sewing, cooking and baking, how to clean things, how to decorate a home, and possibly out of the box skills by learning basic plumbing and electrical work, too. Accomplished? More or less. Many know the rudimentary things about money – budgeting, getting a bargain, finding the best buys. In short, they know how to spend it.


As women age, though, the situation changes. Now they realize there's more than spending money, they must learn to manage it well and preferably let it earn while they do so. It's not hard to learn, but does require some application to do so.


There are some basic precepts that anyone can follow. If you have children, pass this knowledge on to them now!


First and most basic, spend less than what you earn. Most people know this but actually, it's one of the toughest rules to follow. There is always something more that someone wants, be it a new pair of shoes, a new bag, a magazine, another cup of coffee. Credit cards don't help either. These give you a false sense of being able to afford things even if you can't. Once you plug these leaks, you'll find that you have some extra money every month that you can use to earn more. 


Do you pay yourself? Why are you working, anyway? You're breaking your back for yourself, right? So why does everyone get a part of what you earn except yourself? Once you get paid, the first withdrawal should go into your own personal salary fund. Whether you deposit a set percentage or set amount, you'll be able to set aside savings or retirement funds that will be used only for you. Are you worth what you earn in an hour every day?


Be happy with yourself. This means that you don't have to own what your neighbor has to be pleased with yourself. Wouldn't you be happy with a simple home and almost no debts rather than a 5-bedroom home with a pool and half a million dollars to pay?


Debts come first. No matter if you have a mortgage or an account on your credit card, these should be priorities. Pay more than the minimum. You need the money and not the companies to whom you owe money.