Personal Finance Learning Solutions
You Can Use Today
Did those potential causes of money issues discussed in my previous article get you thinking? Are you feeling a little more relieved to realize your lack of financial savvy is not necessarily about your lack of ability, but more about the lack of actually learning how personal finances work?
You can revisit Article Two here: The Cause
Now, for the Solution, think about all those tempting ongoing choices bombarding you every day. Are you recognizing the media overload more consciously? Or noticing the impact of those relentless choices on your energy?
And now, more importantly, be aware of how that impact affects your ability to make wise personal finance choices.
So what ARE the solutions?
For many it’s just too daunting to do everything on their own. Some people clearly do best when they can talk directly to someone – a live voice, not a chat or email exchange. They want to have someone who will listen and understand them, hold them accountable and not feel judged. These are the people I talk to on a regular basis. I’ll talk more about this solution at the end.
Yet there are other solutions for gaining personal financial knowledge and confidence. Remember, everyone learns differently.
The key is knowing the learning style best for you. Just because someone suggested a way to manage your finances, doesn’t mean you have to assume that this particular recommended method is best for you.
What personal finance learning approach DOES work best for you?
Let’s look at just a few of the possibilities.
1. Online Research
Any search on “personal budgeting”, “basic money management” and many other terms, will bring up scores of resources. Do you work best with online courses, watching videos or info graphics, reading blogs or financial websites or receiving regular email newsletters feeding you gradual information?
With all the options available during a specific search, you are bound to find quite a variety of websites and blogs to address ways of gaining information on your personal finances.
One website that has a wonderful focus on practical budgeting information is https://www.themodestwallet.com/how-to-budget/. The information in their articles and guides include many of the basic concepts I have provided in “The Budget Kit Workbook” and my general workshops for decades.
2. Live Interaction
Some people continue to prefer group interaction, as experienced through physical classrooms or even live Webinars or Teleseminars. There’s just something about that verbal exchange and listening to different perspectives from other people that seems to drive home the new information. That’s probably why classes still fill up at the traditional Community College, Continuing Education classes, the Learning Annex programs, church programs and others.
3. Interactive Tools
Or maybe at this point you love working independently and interacting with the latest app or software that automates much of your financial transactions and keeps you informed with alerts. This approach can certainly provide a ton of financial feedback and keep you aware with the alerts for deposits and withdrawals showing anything unusual.
If interactive tools are your “go to”, then research those tools that not only track the expenses, but also provide easy systems for creating a spending plan — a budget. One that captures your total financial picture of the household/personal expenses.
Be sure those tools help you outline and plan for those upcoming rare and periodic expenses that often blow a budget. Also watch for convenient ways to save and pay down credit cards.
A tool is only as good as the information it provides. Check that the app or software is a good fit for your particular financial situation as well as your personal way of doing things.
4. Online Chats
Are you in your element with online chatting? This is another way to interact, get support and answers for some specific issues around the product you are using and some budgeting issues.
This is a great solution for someone who is patient and quick with typing out their conversations.
If you ever noticed that a chat response occasionally takes a little longer, here’s a tidbit that may interest you. My friend saw a job opening for customer care for one of the financial budgeting websites. Part of the job requirement was to handle three chats at once, not to mention all the other listed duties. Now you know what might be delaying that response.
5. One-on-One Coaching
Even with all the above options, I deal with phone conversations regularly from people who have tried the whole gamut of personal finance learning software and tools.
They’ve read through the reams of colorful records and pie charts putting all their information neatly together.
Yet something is still missing. Many of my callers tell me that for some reason they still can’t seem to grasp the bigger picture. They just don’t feel like they have a clear, solid financial spending plan or budget that is working for them.
This may be true for you. In the end, after going through so many different attempts, you just want to sit down and talk directly with someone.
This is where the one-on-one coaching solution comes in.
Whether in person or by phone, this solution puts you in your comfort zone. Someone to listen to you. Someone who understands and has heard these “unique” stories before.
Someone who totally understands the overwhelm, embarrassment (yes there is shame), fear, and frustration you have around money issues.
And Someone who will discuss or go over all the handy information you’ve collected during the past weeks or months and help make sense of it all with you.
More than once I’ve heard “Figuring out all this “stuff” alone is just too much!” So, this is what I’ve developed, and can offer you now.
Go to Article Four: The Benefits
“Nobody wants to talk about how to do your budget. This work is valuable. I needed to bring the real financial issue into focus and get the true overview of my financial scenario. This has helped me tremendously. With support and encouragement I’m able to finally understand my finances, do the work necessary and finally get the hang of this budgeting stuff.” P.B. AL
I look forward to working with you and supporting you as you create your new life!
Wishing you much financial peace of mind.
Judy Lawrence, M.S. Ed.