Recommitting to your Budget (Your Budget Misses You!)

Recommit to your budget

This is what it looks like when “Life” happens.

 

There are two things you HAVE to know to be successful with money.

1. Your budget is your primary tool for financial freedom.

2. Your budget won’t work unless you do.

It’s only the second week of the year, but by now most folks have already broken their new year’s resolutions.

One thing we’re experts at in this country is failing to follow through on our commitments.

Likewise, the biggest issue most people have isn’t that they don’t know how to budget, they just aren’t doing it.

Life happens.

 

We forget.

Or worse, we get frustrated.

We make decisions based on emotions in the moment rather than on principles that have withstood the test of time.

So let me ask you…

Do you need to recommit to your budget? Did you start strong only to fall off the wagon when life got busy? Did you give up because of an argument you had with your spouse?

Your budget is simply a piece of paper that tells your money where to go. If you don’t tell it where to go it gets lost. So don’t overcomplicate it. Just get started.

Will it be perfect? No.

Can I guarantee it will work? No. But I can guarantee it won’t work if you don’t do it.

Yes I know it’s the last season of The Office (we’re sad too). But get your hiney off the couch and do something that will change your life.

Recommit to your budget.

-Wesley

P.S. You will need to recommit often. We still fall off the wagon and fail to do our budget some months. Oh yeah…we ALWAYS overspend on those months. Hmm…interesting how that works isn’t it?

Three Keys to Survive the Storms of Life

How to survive the storms of life

Have you ever had one of those seasons where life just knocks you around? Where you completely lose sight of your vision, your goals are all but forgotten, and you’re doing your best just to get through each day? How do you survive the storms of life? I just got through one. Let me explain.

How to survive the storms of life

Merry Christmas Baby!

My career is in insurance, and when hurricane Sandy pummeled the northeast I suddenly found myself in New Jersey for several weeks. Then in December, our son was born (Say hello to Hudson!). Both my professional and my personal life were demanding insane amounts of time and energy.

Chaos ruled the day.  For two months I didn’t exercise, didn’t listen to podcasts, didn’t read, didn’t post, didn’t stay connected on Facebook…you get the picture. (Speaking of picture…how cute is this!)

How to Survive the Storms of Life

1. Drop All Extra Cargo

Remember the story of Paul’s shipwreck in the book of Acts? Here he is in the middle of a huge storm and how did the keep afloat? By throwing all of the non-essential cargo overboard.

When chaos reigns, you stay grounded by focusing on only your top priorities and nothing else. Forget about any secondary goals and desires. Just throw them off for a season knowing you can get to them later when the storm subsides. And forget about balance. This is all about focusing only on what matters most and not even worrying about anything else.

2. Set Your Anchor

If your soul isn’t anchored in God you’re going to get blown all over, especially in the storms of life. Even though my time in New Jersey was chaotic, I managed to carve out a little time on most mornings to grab my bible and some coffee and spend time with God.

I can’t tell you how refreshing this is. There is a rest that is deeper than sleep, and you can only find it in God. Despite several nights of just a few hours of sleep I was able to smile through the chaos because I was tapping into an endless source of joy and peace that wasn’t dependent on my circumstances. The harder the winds blow the more secure your anchor needs to be.

My storm was caused by incredible busyness. But you may be experiencing a storm of great sorrow or loss. The principles here are still the same, but I’d say the greater the pain, the deeper your anchor needs to be.

Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
3. Enjoy the Journey

I have two babies now…one beautiful 15 month old girl and a handsome 3 week old boy. Oh…and I work from home. Oh and I’m still slammed with work thanks to Hurricane Sandy. So life for me is still very chaotic. But it’s my life and I embrace it.

Despite all the poopy diapers, sleepless nights, long days of work interrupted by children crying, I know that I only get one shot at this. I only get one January 7th, 2013 to hold Hudson or play on the floor with Macey. So instead of cursing this season I bless it. I live in it rather than wishing it were over. Before I know it I’ll be sending these kids off to college.

Life is too fast, so learn to enjoy the journey, even with its twists and turns.

You have to keep perspective. Realize it’s just a season. And don’t forget you have an enemy (see 1 Peter 5:8)…God is on your side through this so work together with him.

If this has helped you, or if you have other tips you’d like to share on how to survive the storms of life, please leave us a comment!

-Wesley

Book Review: Secrets of the Millionaire Mind

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth

I’m super excited! This is our first video post and our first book review. It’s a review of T. Harv Ekers excellent book “Secrets of the Millionaire Mind.” Enjoy!

Here’s a link to Amazon if you’d like to check out the book reviews or order a copy. It’s an affiliate link, so I’ll make about 20 cents if you order it from here! :)

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth

3 Ways to Crush It At Work without Losing Your Family

Should you Crush It? Pursue balance? Or…neither?

Every morning I take a forty minute walk with Beth & Macey. Often we’ll follow it up with coffee on the porch until Macey’s nap time around 9:15. All in all it’s about 90 minutes smack dab in the middle of my morning routine.

I’m blessed to be able to work at home. But I’m very aware that there is a tremendous amount of work to do, both on Debt To Life and in my “real” job. Usually I’ll get up a couple of hours before the rest of the family, so that when it’s “walk time” I don’t feel the pressure to skip it since I’ve already got a head start on work.

But this morning I overslept. Ooops. Continue reading…

How We Averted Disaster By Checking Our Credit Score

Raise your hand if you check your credit every year!

“But you don’t understand…I didn’t take out this loan!”

In February, we received a call from a creditor about an outstanding loan that we had supposedly taken out. The problem was, that we hadn’t taken out any loans in several years.

As we looked into it deeper, we realized that someone had used my wife’s social, along with my cell number, and was able to secure an online pay-day loan. Continue reading…

If You’re Not Failing, You’re Probably A Failure

If You’re Not Failing, You’re Probably A Failure

When Peter stepped out of the boat and started walking towards Jesus, the bible says that he saw the wind and the waves, became afraid, and started to sink.

I’ll have to admit, if that were me, my first response probably would have been, “I’m such a failure. How embarrassing. I should have never gotten out of the boat!” Continue reading…

9 Things I’ve Learned About God From Being A Dad (Part Three)

Meeting my princess, September 2011

Welcome back! It’s been an amazing first year of fatherhood, and I’ve really enjoyed looking back on this year and reflecting on the things I’ve learned. This is our final post on lessons I’ve learned about God from being a dad. Click here for parts one and two. Let’s jump right in where we left off.

7. Every rule has a reason.

Here in Florida, the #1 cause of death among children is drowning.  It’s unbelievably tragic, as it can easily be avoided if the right boundaries are in place. Like a fence around the pool, every rule that Beth and I have for Macey is for her good. Her limited understanding doesn’t always see it that way, so she pushes against the boundaries we have set up for her. Continue reading…

9 Things I’ve Learned About God From Being A Dad (Part Two)

Swaddling my 6-day old princess.

Hi friends! We’re going to pick up right where we left off. Our last post was focused on love & grace; this post dives into the deeper issues of pain and difficulty. My hope is that this will speak to you right where you’re at, and that you sense the nearness of God even in your difficult moments.

4. God doesn’t desire pain for you.

Pain is a part of Macey’s story, just as it’s a part of your story.  She falls everyday. She gets upset sometimes when she isn’t allowed to do or touch something. But the pain she experiences isn’t “my will” for her as her father. Continue reading…

9 Things I’ve Learned About God From Being A Dad (1-3)

Things I've Learned About God From Being A Dad

Me & Macey, August 2012

Did you know that Jesus called God “father” over a hundred times in the gospels? Fatherhood is central to who God is and to how he relates to us.

A couple of weeks ago we celebrated Macey’s 1st birthday. Looking back over this past year, there are 9 things I’ve learned about God from being a dad.

 1. God loves you because you’re his.

If I was on a boat full of 100 toddlers and it started to sink, guess which toddler I would rescue? Mine. Hopefully I could rescue them all, but if only one child was going to be saved, it would by MY child. Why? Because she’s mine. Not because she’s the nicest, most loving, prettiest, or anything else. I love her because she is mine. Continue reading…

What is the Real Key to Success?

What's the Real Key To Success?

How Many Keys To Success Can There Be?

I get so tired sometimes of hearing about success.

Almost every blog I read can be boiled down to how to be successful in one area or another. The problem isn’t the issue of success. Success is awesome. The problem is that I’m always being sold to. Everyone is trying to sell their version of success (influence, money, etc), or their method of obtaining success.

What is the real key to success?

Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

So instead of (here comes a deep thought), actually doing what we know we should to reach our goals, we get distracted by a dozen other programs and systems that promise what we want.

The result? We jump all over the place in search of the right formula for success. After several years of this we realize we’ve zigzagged ourselves nowhere.

Lately, I keep hearing the same message from people I would call successful. It’s odd frankly. It doesn’t matter if it’s in a book I’m reading, on a podcast, or meeting with fellow entrepreneurs. The message has been the same across the board. If you want to be successful, pick a path and stick with it. This is water to my soul…here’s why. Continue reading…