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Jul
03
2012

4 Steps to Help You Achieve Financial Freedom

Financial freedom may seem like an elusive goal that few achieve.  However, it is possible to achieve personal financial freedom if you follow the right steps.  Here are 4 steps that can help you to gain control of your life and finally realize financial freedom.

Step One: Create a Budget

Creating a budget is an important first step for anyone who truly wishes to gain control of their financial destiny.  Once you see exactly what you are earning and how much you are spending, you can anticipate monthly expenses, avoid late charges and start to save for the future.

Step Two: Stop Being an Impulse Buyer

Do not buy something right when you see it.  Go to local stores or online stores to search for specific items.  If you see something you wish to purchase, sleep on it, read some reviews, or run it by your spouse.  Do whatever you need to do to ensure that you are not spending money on impulse, as you may greatly regret an impulse buy later on.

Step Three: Set Financial Goals

Setting financial goals is a great way to achieve financial freedom.  Set short term and long term financial goals and reward yourself when you achieve them.  For example, you could set a goal to reduce your electric bill by 10% or more by using less energy, or you could set a goal to save 25% on your grocery bill by buying less expensive brands.  Set savings goals too, and then follow through and actually save money every paycheck.  You will be surprised at how fast it can add up!

Step Four: Keep Your Long Term and Short Term Savings Separate

It is important to save for the future, both the immediate future and the distant future.  Make sure that you have an emergency fund to pay any unanticipated medical expenses or other unexpected bills, and that you are also putting money away into savings for retirement.  Consider investing in an IRA or stocks and bonds, with the help of a financial advisor.  Step Five: Be an Intelligent Consumer

By being an intelligent consumer you can make your money go a very long way.  Most everyone wishes to make more money, but at the end of the day it is about making intelligent financial decisions.  Believe it or not, people who make unwise financial decisions may very well be living paycheck to paycheck even if they make over six figures a year.  Do not overextend yourself financially.  By avoiding unnecessary purchases and being fugal you can stretch your dollars considerably.

These 4 steps can help you along the path to financial freedom.  However, to truly be successful in achieving financial freedom, you will need to decide what that phrase means to you.  Do you wish to be free of debt?  Do you wish to have significant savings?  Decide what you most desire and make it happen.  Today is the first day of the rest of your life!

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