Most people have to live their life with financial limitations, though a certain extent of that can be self-imposed. It’s practically impossible to be fiscally responsible every waking moment, sometimes prompting us to make excuses regarding our financial dissatisfaction.
While some excuses can be valid, others do nothing more than further prohibiting us from achieving our financial goals:
“I Don’t Make Enough Money”
If you’re evaluating where to rent or buy a home and need to realistically consider what’s feasible, then saying that your earnings aren’t on par with a specific property can be financially responsible. After all, approximately one-quarter of your pre-tax earnings should go toward rent.
However, when this excuse gets in the way of minor expenses that could be worth their price, it can put you in a perpetual rut. If you aren’t making enough money at your current position and have time to spare, then take up a part-time job on the side. If you don’t have enough time, consider asking for a raise or searching for a new position with a higher salary. There’s often a way to improve your financial situation.
“I Don’t Have Time for a Side Gig”
Some jobs can be so draining that, upon arriving home, you want to do nothing more than relax. Consider asking for a raise or promotion if a job is especially demanding. Beyond that, it’s worth evaluating your time management skills. Specifically, using a time management app or system can make your work time more productive and less hectic, allowing you to save energy for improved performance or taking on a side gig after work.
“I’ll Never Be Debt-Free”
Considering that over 44 million Americans have student debt alone, this can be a very common money excuse. Unfortunately, student debt tends to be arguably the most rigid to get rid of, since medical debts and others can be negotiated down. Still, all types of debts can benefit from a payment plan for organizational purposes, with the possibility to base it on your income so you can pay a fair rate each month. Although it can take many years to get out of debt, looking into payment plans and keeping track of your payments can help ease the pressure considerably.
“I’m Just Really Bad with Money”
Fiscal management skills are incredibly important. You can also learn financial responsibility at any age. If someone complains that they’re bad with handling money, then suggest to them they should start learning how to be good with money. A variety of informational resources, from classes to books, help with everything from paying off debt to setting up a budget and saving for retirement.
One of the first things someone who’s bad with money should do is track their expenses over a month. Looking at the data, ask yourself which expenses you could have lived without. Is there an area in which you’re spending too much on each month? Combine self-analysis with seeking financial knowledge to improve your money skills notably.
“You Only Live Once”
It’s an excuse often accompanied by reckless spending. Saying “you only live once,” while true, can discourage positive money habits. Although there’s nothing wrong with splurging on occasion for a nice restaurant or new video game, doing so excessively while citing “YOLO” will just result in increased debt and stress. A happy, fulfilled life is not one with constantly increasing debt and financial pressures.
The excuse “I deserve to spend money on this” can be similar. Sometimes it can be true, though often it’s just an excuse to justify unnecessary spending.
“I Can Just Use My Credit Card”
Credit cards can be a great thing when used correctly. If you pay off your balance every month, you can qualify for a variety of rewards and incentives, often in the range of one percent to three percent for anything spent.
However, failing to pay your credit cards promptly can result in late fees, which would have been entirely avoidable if you didn’t spend on something you couldn’t afford. Now, in addition to spending recklessly, you have another payment to worry about.
If possible, treat credit cards more like a debit card. Don’t use a credit card unless you’re certain you have the money in your bank account to pay for it.
These are excuses we all use from time to time, without recognizing that they deter good spending habits. Being aware of these excuse and how to counter them is a great way to improve fiscal responsibility.