Taking full responsibility for your money has two phases. The first is about making your 100 percent list of tasks to complete so you can honestly tell yourself that you've taken total responsibility for your money.
The second phase is Awareness, the ongoing discipline of taking responsibility for your money. In our home we call it the Money Game because the better we play that game, the more money seems to come our way. You may laugh, but we've been doing it for over 30 years, and it's paid off big time. We call it a game because it's all about keeping score and knowing where we stand at all times. It's made finances interesting and fun, while giving us the security of knowing we're masters of our own financial destiny.
For example, would you be interested in the Olympics if gymnasts weren't rated, swimmers weren't timed, neither soccer team won, or runners had no finish line? In fact, if the Olympics weren't 'Games,' the show would have closed after the first event in Athens. Same issue with money. If you're not playing the money game, you can't win it!
Not that we haven't lapsed. I remember times when we spent with no idea what was in the bank or what we owed on our credit cards. We didn't know if we were winning or losing the money game because we had no idea what was happening. Not only was this madness, we were getting nowhere except deeper in debt.
In this situation you're out of control with no idea if you're winning or losing. What is in charge is your bag of excuses and justifications. And worse your lack of integrity and responsibility slam the door on your chances of generating more money.
Money miracles can't happen in a money mess!
That's why I call this article 'Awareness Brings Its Own Reward$'. Although this discipline takes us about three or four hours a month, we're well paid for every minute -- great ROI!
What do you need to do?
Here's what we do or have done at different times of our life. Perhaps not everything on this list is appropriate for you now, but carefully consider them all.
Use a personal money management software system.
Update your checking, savings, and credit card accounts every week.
Balance all your accounts, once a month.
Make an Annual Plan/Budget for income and expenditure and update monthly
Find out exactly how much money you owe -- all debts.
Calculate your net worth -- the most accurate picture of your financial position.
Prepare early so that you'll be able to retire when you want to.
Make a long-range financial plan for your retirement
Yes, it's a lot of work, particularly if you're just getting started. But honestly unless you're playing the Money Game by being aware of where you stand at all times, you're not in charge of your own life -- your money is. When you know exactly what's happening, you're the one who gives the orders!
I think Abraham Lincoln summed it up well:
"You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today. "
In the next week, complete the following:
Thank you for your response and your sharing about this series. Here are some of your answers to the question "What's the biggest challenge on my 100 Percent Money List?"
"My biggest challenge is probably trying to do too much too soon and not giving me space to digest this process."
"I have back taxes to sort out and been putting it off for a long time."
Given the amount of information I've shared with you over the last several weeks, my next article will come to you in two weeks rather than one. The fifth in the series will be: "How To Have More Money". Here's the full list for reviewing or sharing:
To make this journey toward sufficiency and abundance more meaningful for us all, please answer this question:
What are you going to do to get started playing the Month Game?
Write your answers as well as your comments or questions either below on The Huffington Post or to email@example.com.
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