Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The first step to get out of debt

The first step you must take is to stop borrowing money. If you want to get out of a hole, you need to stop digging.

Take the first step towards getting out of debt. Cut your credit cards up or freeze them in a block of ice.

If you don't have enough money to get through a month without using a credit card then you have to face reality and either cut your expenses or raise your income.

Get $500 worth of Marketing for $100

As a small business owner, don't ever settle to get only what you paid for out of your marketing. You should be getting way more for your money!

Of course, most businesses only get what they pay for when it comes to their marketing. They will forever stay in the bottom 98% of normal companies. If you want your company to be great, you must take it to the next level.

If you advertise in a magazine, make hundreds of copies. Include reprints in your marketing material "As Seen in Time Magazine". Put a copy on your website, tell everyone you know.

The credibility of the magazine will automatically be transferred to to your business by the customer.

Of course it's not necessary to do this. If you want your business to remain normal, simply keep doing what everyone else is doing. Pay for marketing and only get what you pay for.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Your Spouse Must be Onboard

Whether you're getting out of debt or starting a new business, you spouse must be on board. When money is tight and one spouse wants to get out of debt but the other spends like their is no tomorrow the marriage is often hanging on by a thread.

You must both be on board if you want to make progress. Part of my job is to show couples how to work together to execute their plans.

Feel alone in trying to reach your goals? Often times I have each spouse separately write their list of financial goals on paper. We get back together and compare. Almost every time both sheets of paper contain the exact same goals.

Retirement, money in the bank, nice home, etc. If you have the same goals, why are you fighting?

When helping someone find work they love or start a business I like to meet with the other half of the marriage to see if they approve. They don't have the be involved, but without the support and encouragement of a trusting spouse it is much harder to succeed.

Try separately writing down your goals and comparing them with your spouse today. It could mean a world of difference and even save your marriage.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Ministry Isn't Done at Church

Don't get fooled into thinking that God has a call on your life for ministry so you must work for the church. I'm in ministry and I don't work at a church. My trash man is in ministry and he doesn't work in a church. Every Tuesday morning the kids rush to meet him in the driveway. Whether we're out there or not he honks the horn.

Most people think this level of worker never completed college or even high school. Whether that's true or not, he'll never know how much his presence every Tuesday morning at 7am means to our family. It's usually the best part of our Tuesday's to see the big truck and someone who cares enough to go the extra mile.

Ministry was never meant to happen inside a building, but rather in the community. Find the work you love and use it as your ministry.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Change is Scary!

That may be true, but we all go through it. The world changes every day and you must keep up or you risk falling behind.

It's been said that if you're still doing the same thing you were 5 years ago, you have probably fallen behind.

Don't fear change... embrace it! It's going to happen so find the good and latch on for the ride!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Why Financial Coaching?

There are many options available to you and your family regardless of whether you're doing great with money, or very poorly.

You could visit a CPA, financial advisor, financial planner or even a financial coach.

As a financial coach, here's my outlook on the different types of services.

CPAs are usually focused on your taxes and not necessarily very helpful in developing a budget. They should be able to help you set up a list of expenses vs. your income, but that's only about 20% of the budgeting process.

Financial advisors and planners can be very helpful as well, but keep in mind that they only make money if you buy insurance or investment products from them. That's not a good combination if you want an objective view of your money.

As a Financial Coach, my focus is to have a global overview of your life. My coaches and I look at your insurance, investments, your tax strategy and your estate plan. More importantly we work on the important part of budgeting, the 80% that most other professionals leave out.

This is personal finance and 80% of it is your behaviors and habits. Our focus is to help you determine a plan that works for you and your family. We teach you about insurance and investments, but don't sell any. While there is nothing wrong with making commissions, my team and I are unable to offer the best advice if we get kick-backs from products. Instead, we teach you what you need and show you where to get it.

You may be able to get a great plan from many different people. My advice is to schedule a meeting with a few professionals and interview them. If they won't meet with you for at least 30-minutes for free, then move on to someone that will.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Back to Work

After a 3-day holiday weekend are you excited to go back to work? I talked about that idea on the radio show today and mentioned how excited I am to get back to the work that I love.

I honestly believe that if you don't feel that way about your work, you're most likely in the wrong job, career or vocation.

What would it take to turn your passions into profits? It's obviously much easier to make money doing something that you love than it is if you're working at a job you hate.

Can you put plans on paper and slowly move in the direction of utilizing your full potential?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Debt Stress

It just doesn't sound good, does it? No, it's certainly not something I want to have.

A recent poll shows about 20% of Americans suffer from debt related stress. Here are a few things and article from USA Today pointed out that these people suffer from:
  • 44% had migraines or other headaches, compared with 15% with low debt stress.
  • 29% suffered severe anxiety, compared with 4%.
  • 23% had severe depression, compared with 4%.
  • 6% reported heart attacks, double the rate for those with low debt stress.
  • More than half, 51%, had muscle tension, including pain in the lower back. That compared with 31% of those with low levels of debt stress.
How about developing a plan to pay off your debt in just 24 months or less and then do it?