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7 Simple Habits Of Financially Fit People

Ever looked at your checking account a week before payday and wondered how you were going to make it?

You’re not alone. In fact, 76% of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck.

That doesn’t mean you can’t become one of the elite 24% of the people who have a nice cushion on hand to get through the tough times. These people, the financially fit, are the ones to emulate.

Here are the 7 habits that the Financially Fit follow to keep them in the black, no matter what happens.


1. They Keep The Change

When they go to the store, the smart money is on using paper rather than metal. At the end of every day, the wise will dump their change in a jar and save it for a rainy day.

2. They Are Organized

One major reason you’re living paycheck to paycheck is that you’re not organizing your finances. Know when the bills are due, then apportion payments among each pay period. If the rent is $1,500 per month, set aside $750 each paycheck (assuming you get paid twice a month).

3. They Are Aware

The universe laughs when people make plans, as the saying goes. We’re all confronted with unforeseen events, and costs that we didn’t expect. Smart folks act as if they’re going to need some extra money tomorrow (or later today), and set aside a few bucks on a regular basis to ensure they won’t fall short.

4. They Are Forward-Thinking

The financially successful know they won’t be this young forever, and are plotting their exit from the working world. Whether it’s an IRA or a 401k, they’ve got their eyes on the long-term prize of a hearty retirement fund.

5. They Are Focused

The Elite 24% don’t need cable television with every premium channel because they know they can buy the full season of Game Of Thrones for less money than the cost of an HBO subscription. They know it’s more important to put away a few dollars than to buy more apps for their phone. Instead, they make sure every expense provides value to their life.

6. They Are Realistic

Ever wonder why so many diets fail? It’s because they require you to avoid something you love. Take away someone’s ice cream forever, and they’re sure to ricochet in a big way. The most financially healthy people know that if they restrict their ability to spend money on anything, they’ll eventually throw up their hands and go overboard the other way. That’s why they always make sure to keep a few dollars for enjoyment – be it a magazine subscription, a Spotify account or that periodic ice cream bar.

7. They Are Persistent

Being financially successful requires an understanding that it’s a marathon rather than a sprint. There will be setbacks, and the bank account won’t always grow as quickly as we’d like. Be patient and recognize that you’ll get there in time.

I’m sure these aren’t the only habits that the financially secure Elite 24% practice, so if you think of others place let me know.

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By |February 10th, 2014|

About the Author:

I’ve been a consumer protection lawyer since 1995, working to help people end their bill problems. I’m a faculty member at the Student Loan Law Workshop, a nationally recognized speaker, and a long-time member of both the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys and National Association of Consumer Advocates.

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