Are you a slave to money? Do you often stress about how much money you have and are struggling paycheck to paycheck? If so, you may want to consider developing a financial literacy program that will free you from this vicious cycle.
Through my mentorship program, I have helped many people attain financial freedom and independence. Although smart money habits are best cultivated early in life, many of us simply aren’t taught the basics—and that’s one reason why a good financial literacy program is so effective.
Here are some key steps to develop a financial literacy program and attain financial freedom.
A Financial Literacy Program
- Master the basics of household budgeting. Whether you are using an Excel spreadsheet or some basic budgeting software, it is important to track your savings and expenditures. Doing so will help you avoid late fees, credit issues, cash flow problems and a number of negative consequences.
- Understand how credit and debt works. A good credit history makes navigating through life much easier—and much less expensive. Poor credit can prevent you from obtaining a home or a job. It also means you will pay more for anything you buy on credit. It is also important to understand the key distinction between good debt and bad debt.
- Learn the fundamentals of investing. The power of compounded interest is truly magical. Here is an example that will show you why: An investment of just $25 per week returns more than $113,000 over 30 years if your money generates a very reasonable seven-percent return. Learning the basics about 401ks, IRAs and other tax-advantaged retirement vehicles is vitally important if you would like to obtain financial independence.
- Stay covered. Health insurance, life insurance, and disability insurance all have a role to play in helping you avoid financial catastrophe. Don’t risk being without coverage. It could be costly.
It is almost impossible to achieve financial independence without being financially literate. Here is a list of resources to help you master financial literacy and develop a viable program:
- This website from the U.S. Department of the Treasury is a comprehensive and highly valuable clearinghouse of financial literacy information and concepts.
- The National Financial Educators Council has resources available for both individuals and educators. I was honored to be named their Financial Educator of the Year in 2015.
- For a fun way to encourage financial education in your family, check out our award winning money and life reality game, ThriveTime for Teens.
The Bottom Line
It is never too late to become fluent in personal finance. Use the building blocks provided to start your education in financial literacy. A sound financial literacy program can help you develop the savvy and discipline you need to thrive in the future.
For more information on developing a financial literacy program or if you are interested in being mentored, contact me today.