What Should I Do With My Stimulus Check? How To Save Money During The Coronavirus Crisis

A month into social distancing measures, most people are trying to understand the full scope of how the coronavirus pandemic will impact their lives. As state and local governments order people to stay home, many of us have shifted to work from home indefinitely, continued positions on the front lines, or lost jobs altogether. As a result, the economy has thrown retirement savings and other investments for a loop.

These changes, like any issue related to the gender pay gap, disproportionately affect women, who make up 75% of health care practitioners, almost 90% of health care support staff and one-third of independent contractors, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. More than 700,000 jobs were eliminated during the first wave of coronavirus-related layoffs in March, NPR reported, 60% of which were held by women; a recent report from the National Women’s Law Center found that women, especially Latinx, black, and indigenous women, are overrepresented in low-wage jobs and will be hit hardest by a post-COVID-19 recession. Women who are still employed might need to juggle new responsibilities like caring for children who are now learning remotely or for sick relatives alongside, you know, doing their jobs.

Financially speaking, it’s a tough time for everybody. Bustle spoke with economics and personal finance experts about what you should be doing with your money right now.

Plan How You’ll Use Your Stimulus Check

The stimulus package signed at the end of March is meant to offset some of the losses from the shaky economy. Single individuals who made less than $75,000 in 2018 will get $1,200, plus $500 per child. People making up to $99,000 and married couples who filed jointly might get slightly different amounts.

Yana Rodgers, faculty director for the Center for Women and Work at Rutgers University, says the package is “a step in the right direction but … insufficient” — not enough people qualify for stimulus checks, the checks won’t come quickly enough, and $1,200 isn’t really enough to sustain a household through this crisis.

Ande Frazier, a certified financial planner and CEO and editor-in-chief of MyWorth, a personal finance site, suggests using this money to cover immediate needs or boost your emergency fund. Lauren Anastasio, a certified financial planner at SoFi, a personal finance company, says that your emergency fund should consist of three to six months’ worth of essential living expenses; if you’re wondering what that number is, calculate everything you spend money on in a month and multiply that by at least three. If you don’t already have a budget, that would be a good project to take on now, too.

If you’re strapped for cash, plan to be “ruthless” with your spending for the next few months, Frazier says. Write down how much money is coming in and out, when your bills are due, and what you can cut. If you’re working from home, your transportation costs will likely be lower or nonexistent; if you take money out of your paycheck pre-tax for subway tickets or parking, ask HR if you can pause that deduction for now. You can also cut back on food expenses by meal prepping, Frazier says.

The package will also expand unemployment benefits; you can receive an additional $600 a week through the end of July and can get benefits for up to 39 weeks rather than the usual 26. If you’ve lost your job or been furloughed because of coronavirus, you can go to your state’s department of labor and see what you’re eligible for.

If you’re totally secure in your emergency fund and want to use the extra money to help others out, Frazier recommends donating it to domestic violence organizations or another cause close to your heart.

Call Your Bill Collectors About Coronavirus Relief

If the pandemic means you can’t cover your heat or electric costs, call your lenders to adjust or defer your repayment plans, Anastasio says. If you specify that you’ve been impacted by coronavirus-related job cuts, they may offer programs that will prevent your accounts from being reported to credit bureaus for late or missing payments.

Under the new stimulus package, federal student loan payments will be suspended until Sept. 30, according to The New York Times, so that’s one bill people won’t have to worry about; Frazier recommends putting the money you’d spend on paying off loans directly into savings if you don’t need it right away.

Frazier has been advising her clients to pay the minimum on their debts and concentrate on stashing as much money as possible in their emergency funds. If you want to continue paying off your debts during this period, try the avalanche method, or paying the minimum across all your debt and use the money left over to pay off anything high interest. If your debt feels overwhelming, try the snowball repayment method, meaning you pay off your smaller debts before moving onto the bigger ones.

Leave Your Retirement Savings Alone… Unless You Really, Really Need It

It might be tempting, but pulling money from your retirement probably isn’t worth it, unless your situation is truly drastic. Instead, Frazier recommends waiting out the market downturn.

“I know that this is very uncomfortable, but it truly is a natural part of the market cycle,” Anastasio says. “And for those younger investors who are experiencing this for the first time and watching their portfolio go down … this is not the first time they’re going to experience this during their career.”

Frazier recommends looking at your savings, the cash value of your life insurance policy, or even a home equity loan instead.

If you absolutely need to withdraw from your retirement savings, you can take out up to $100,000 from your 401(k) or IRA without being hit with a 10% penalty, thanks to the stimulus package, but you’ll still have to pay regular income tax on it, Frazier says.

“Taking money from your retirement funds probably should be a last resort,” she says.

Don’t Panic Invest During The Stock Market Downturn

You might have heard that with the downturn, it’s like stocks are “on sale.” Anastasio has heard of inexperienced investors who are borrowing money or even using their emergency funds to invest in stocks at a lower price, but she says it’s not a great idea to withdraw from an emergency fund for anything other than an emergency.

Most people shouldn’t make any changes to their investment strategy right now, Anastasio says. She says she’d rather see her clients focus on building a cash reserve — that three to six months’ worth of expenses — than trying to make short-term gains on the stock market. Ideally, you want to have those savings and your high-interest debt paid off before doing any kind of investing, she says. That way, you’ll be prepared to take care of yourself if you’re laid off or furloughed or if you get sick.

If your savings are in good shape and you’re itching to get into the market, talk to a financial advisor to make sure you’re making the best use of your money. But remember that no one is sure how long these ups and downs will last, and the stock market will still be there when this is all over.

 

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Phicklephilly Is Now A Dot Com!

Yesterday, I decided that after much research I should upgrade my wordpress account to a premium account.

For nearly four years, I’ve been writing phicklphilly on this platform. It’s been great. I started this blog in the summer of 2016 with a single post and hoped that I could stick with it.

So many times creative people start projects and never finish them. It’s sometimes hard for the creative mind to stay focused. The ideas are good, but the difficult part is bringing the body over with the mind.

My brain wants to be a writer, but the hard part is the actual writing. I think we can all relate to that. It’s like deciding to get in shape. You may say you’re going on a diet and starting a work out regimen, but getting the body to come along with that idea can be the major challenge.

So I paid the fee with some trepidation and navigated through the process. I wanted to monetize my site because I figured after four years I should have enough monthly traffic to get approved for that.

What I quickly realized is that once you upgrade, if you want to really take advantage of all the features of a premium account, you need a domain.

WordPress offered some horrible options. phi-ckl-ephi-lly.com, phicklephillies.com, phicklephilly.me, phicklephilly.tv. Just awful.

I’m like… I’m not using any of these crappy domain names.

But then I remembered something…

Three and a half years ago, when I was six months into writing Phicklephilly, I went on GoDaddy and bought the domain, Phicklephilly.com for $60. It was mine for the next five years. It was cheap because phicklephilly is a made up word. So there was zero competition to acquire the name.

I called GoDaddy last night, and spoke with a nice young man named Casey in Iowa of all places. We chatted and I explained my dilemma. I assumed there wasn’t much threat of coronavirus in Iowa. Who has any reason to go to Iowa? But he told me they were in quarantine too. All of the restaurants and bars are closed. So he’s been refinishing his basement. He has a couple of his buddies over and they put up drywall, shoot pool, play darts and drink beer. Sounds like a fun time.

He went into his system and found my account. (I had to go dig back into emails from 2016 to find my customer number!) He sent a transfer notice over to wordpress and that was it. It was that easy. I couldn’t believe how simple it was.

I got an email from wordpress to say they were accepting the transfer of my own domain. They proceeded to charge me and $18 fee for that. (I think I have to pay that every year, but who cares? That’s cheap!) I’m so glad I thought of doing this years ago.

So, if you look in the browser you’ll notice it now says, phicklephilly.com and no longer says, phicklephilly.wordpress.com anymore. It’s so cool to have the 24/7 support of wordpress, google analytics, more memory for data, photos and videos and of course ad space. Now that I have a solid domain and a blog website I own, I can now monetize the site. No pesky pop up ads, just digital banners around the site. Top and bottom and maybe one in the sidebar.

So with the sales from my books, and hopefully some revenue generated from the blog, I could see some return on my investment from my new premium account.

You shouldn’t see any real change in phicklephilly, which for me is comforting. I’ll just keep cranking out the quality content that I hope people continue to enjoy.

Also when I publish, the posts copy to Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Pinterest. So there’s an expansion in my reach.

I’m very happy about being able to take this step. It’s nice to see the site continue to grow. I suppose when the quarantine is over, I’ll order some new business cards!

Thanks to you all for your continued support of my work. It’s a delight to write phicklephilly everyday!

 

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Proposed: $2,000 Monthly Stimulus Checks And Canceled Rent And Mortgage Payments For 1 Year

Sounds good to me!

The CARES Act provided a lifeline for taxpayers and small businesses. But as a one-time cash payment, many fear that it didn’t do enough to support taxpayers in one of our country’s greatest times of need. Especially in light of the fact that many people still have not received their stimulus checks.

To address this, members of Congress have made two separate proposals, one that would provide Americans over the age of 16 with a $2,000 monthly check for up to 12 months, and one that would cancel rent and mortgage payments through the duration of the coronavirus emergency.

Let’s take a deeper look:

Proposal #1: $2,000 Monthly Stimulus Check

Representatives Ro Khanna (D-CA) and Tim Ryan (D-OH) introduced the Emergency Money for the People Act. This Act, if passed, would provide additional cash payments to Americans who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Emergency Money for the People Act would provide a $2,000 monthly payment to every qualifying American over the age of 16 for up to 12 months.

This would include individuals who were left out of the CARES Act, such as some high school and college students and adults with disabilities who were ineligible to receive the stimulus check because they were claimed as a dependent on another tax return.

Monthly Stimulus Payments Would Be Easier to Receive

Not everyone has a bank or a home address. To address this, the Emergency Money for the People Act calls for individuals to get this money through direct deposit, check, pre-paid debit card, or mobile money platforms such as Venmo, Zelle, or PayPal.

$2,000 Monthly Stimulus Check Eligibility:

  • Every American age 16 and older making less than $130,000 annually would receive at least $2,000 per month.
  • Married couples earning less than $260,000 would receive at least $4,000 per month.
  • Qualifying families with children will receive an additional $500 per child – for up to three children.
  • Those who had no earnings, were unemployed, or are currently unemployed would also be eligible for the stimulus even if they didn’t file a tax return.
  • Those who were not eligible in 2019 or 2018 but would be eligible in 2020, could submit at least two consecutive months of paychecks to verify income eligibility.

You can learn more on Rep. Khanna’s website or read the full bill here.

See this article to see the current one-time $1,200 stimulus check rules.

Proposal #2: Cancel Rent & Mortgage Payments Through The Coronavirus Emergency

Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) introduced the Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Act. This Act, if approved, would call for a nationwide cancellation of rents and home mortgage payments through the duration of the coronavirus pandemic, or up to one year.

The bill would include:

  • Full rent payment forgiveness for your primary residence
  • Full mortgage payment forgiveness for your primary residence
  • No accumulation of debt for renters or homeowners
  • No negative impact on their credit rating or rental history.
  • It would establish a relief fund for landlords and mortgage holders to cover losses
  • It would create an optional fund to finance the purchase of private rental properties to increase the availability of affordable housing.

The bill would be retroactive to March 13, 2020, and would last for one year, unless extended. Renters and homeowners who made payments during April 2020 would be reimbursed for their payments.

No Double-Dipping Allowed. The bill would only allow taxpayers to receive coverage for their primary residence. It would not cover second homes, vacation homes, or other non-primary residences. Those who have both a mortgage and also rent a home would have to choose the home for which they would want to receive financial relief.

Landlords and Mortgage Companies Would be Covered Through a Fund Managed Through the Department of Housing and Urban Development

The Department of Housing and Urban Development would create a relief fund for lenders and landlords to cover the lost rental and mortgage payments they would have received.

To receive these funds, lenders and landlords would be required to follow federal guidelines for fair lending and renting practices for five years.

You can learn more on Rep. Omar’s website, or read the full proposal here.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Special Report: Prepare For The Ultimate Gaslighting

You are not crazy, my friends

*Gaslighting, if you don’t know the word, is defined as manipulation into doubting your own sanity; as in, Carl made Mary think she was crazy, even though she clearly caught him cheating. He gaslit her.

Pretty soon, as the country begins to figure out how we “open back up” and move forward, very powerful forces will try to convince us all to get back to normal. (That never happened. What are you talking about?) Billions of dollars will be spent on advertising, messaging, and television and media content to make you feel comfortable again. It will come in the traditional forms — a billboard here, a hundred commercials there — and in new-media forms: a 2020–2021 generation of memes to remind you that what you want again is normalcy. In truth, you want the feeling of normalcy, and we all want it. We want desperately to feel good again, to get back to the routines of life, to not lie in bed at night wondering how we’re going to afford our rent and bills, to not wake to an endless scroll of human tragedy on our phones, to have a cup of perfectly brewed coffee, and simply leave the house for work. The need for comfort will be real, and it will be strong. And every brand in America will come to your rescue, dear consumer, to help take away that darkness and get life back to the way it was before the crisis. I urge you to be well aware of what is coming.

For the last hundred years, the multibillion-dollar advertising business has operated based on this cardinal principle: Find the consumer’s problem and fix it with your product. When the problem is practical and tactical, the solution is “as seen on TV” and available at Home Depot. Command strips will save me from having to repaint. So will Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser. Elfa shelving will get rid of the mess in my closet. The Ring doorbell will let me see who’s on the porch if I can’t take my eyes off Netflix. But when the problem is emotional, the fix becomes a new staple in your life, and you become a lifelong loyalist. Coca-Cola makes you: happy. A Mercedes makes you: successful. Taking your kids to Disneyland makes you: proud. Smart marketers know how to highlight what brands can do for you to make your life easier. But brilliant marketers know how to rewire your heart. And, make no mistake, the heart is what has been most traumatized this last month. We are, as a society, now vulnerable in a whole new way.

What the trauma has shown us, though, cannot be unseen. A carless Los Angeles has clear blue skies as pollution has simply stopped. In a quiet New York, you can hear the birds chirp in the middle of Madison Avenue. Coyotes have been spotted on the Golden Gate Bridge. These are the postcard images of what the world might be like if we could find a way to have a less deadly daily effect on the planet. What’s not fit for a postcard are the other scenes we have witnessed: a health care system that cannot provide basic protective equipment for its frontline; small businesses — and very large ones — that do not have enough cash to pay their rent or workers, sending over 16 million people to seek unemployment benefits; a government that has so severely damaged the credibility of our media that 300 million people don’t know who to listen to for basic facts that can save their lives.

The cat is out of the bag. We, as a nation, have deeply disturbing problems. You’re right. That’s not news. They are problems we ignore every day, not because we’re terrible people or because we don’t care about fixing them, but because we don’t have time. Sorry, we have other shit to do. The plain truth is that no matter our ethnicity, religion, gender, political party (the list goes on), nor even our socioeconomic status, as Americans we share this: We are busy. We’re out and about hustling to make our own lives work. We have goals to meet and meetings to attend and mortgages to pay — all while the phone is ringing and the laptop is pinging. And when we get home, Crate and Barrel and Louis Vuitton and Andy Cohen make us feel just good enough to get up the next day and do it all over again. It is very easy to close your eyes to a problem when you barely have enough time to close them to sleep. The greatest misconception among us, which causes deep and painful social and political tension every day in this country, is that we somehow don’t care about each other. White people don’t care about the problems of black America. Men don’t care about women’s rights. Cops don’t care about the communities they serve. Humans don’t care about the environment. These couldn’t be further from the truth. We do care. We just don’t have the time to do anything about it. Maybe that’s just me. But maybe it’s you, too.

Well, the treadmill you’ve been on for decades just stopped. Bam! And that feeling you have right now is the same as if you’d been thrown off your Peloton bike and onto the ground: What in the holy fuck just happened? I hope you might consider this: What happened is inexplicably incredible. It’s the greatest gift ever unwrapped. Not the deaths, not the virus, but The Great Pause. It is, in a word, profound. Please don’t recoil from the bright light beaming through the window. I know it hurts your eyes. It hurts mine, too. But the curtain is wide open. What the crisis has given us is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see ourselves and our country in the plainest of views. At no other time, ever in our lives, have we gotten the opportunity to see what would happen if the world simply stopped. Here it is. We’re in it. Stores are closed. Restaurants are empty. Streets and six-lane highways are barren. Even the planet itself is rattling less (true story). And because it is rarer than rare, it has brought to light all of the beautiful and painful truths of how we live. And that feels weird. Really weird. Because it has… never… happened… before. If we want to create a better country and a better world for our kids, and if we want to make sure we are even sustainable as a nation and as a democracy, we have to pay attention to how we feel right now. I cannot speak for you, but I imagine you feel like I do: devastated, depressed, and heartbroken.

And what a perfect time for Best Buy and H&M and Wal-Mart to help me feel normal again. If I could just have the new iPhone in my hand, if I could rest my feet on a pillow of new Nikes, if I could drink a venti blonde vanilla latte or sip a Diet Coke, then this very dark feeling would go away. You think I’m kidding, that I’m being cute, that I’m denying the very obvious benefits of having a roaring economy. You’re right. Our way of life is not ruinous. The economy is not, at its core, evil. Brands and their products create millions of jobs. Like people — and most anything in life — there are brands that are responsible and ethical, and there are others that are not. They are all part of a system that keeps us living long and strong. We have lifted more humans out of poverty through the power of economics than any other civilization in history. Yes, without a doubt, Americanism is a force for good. It is not some villainous plot to wreak havoc and destroy the planet and all our souls along with it. I get it, and I agree. But its flaws have been laid bare for all to see. It doesn’t work for everyone. It’s responsible for great destruction. It is so unevenly distributed in its benefit that three men own more wealth than 150 million people. Its intentions have been perverted, and the protection it offers has disappeared. In fact, it’s been brought to its knees by one pangolin.

And so the onslaught is coming. Get ready, my friends. What is about to be unleashed on American society will be the greatest campaign ever created to get you to feel normal again. It will come from brands, it will come from government, it will even come from each other, and it will come from the left and from the right. We will do anything, spend anything, believe anything, just so we can take away how horribly uncomfortable all of this feels. And on top of that, just to turn the screw that much more, will be the one effort that’s even greater: the all-out blitz to make you believe you never saw what you saw. The air wasn’t really cleaner; those images were fake. The hospitals weren’t really a war zone; those stories were hyperbole. The numbers were not that high; the press is lying. You didn’t see people in masks standing in the rain risking their lives to vote. Not in America. You didn’t see the leader of the free world push an unproven miracle drug like a late-night infomercial salesman. That was a crisis update. You didn’t see homeless people dead on the street. You didn’t see inequality. You didn’t see indifference. You didn’t see utter failure of leadership and systems.

But you did. You are not crazy, my friends. And so we are about to be gaslit in a truly unprecedented way. It starts with a check for $1,200 (Don’t say I never gave you anything) and then it will be so big that it will be bigly. And it will be a one-two punch from both big business and the big White House — inextricably intertwined now more than ever and being led by, as our luck would have it, a Marketer in Chief. Business and government are about to band together to knock us unconscious again. It will be funded like no other operation in our lifetimes. It will be fast. It will be furious. And it will be overwhelming. The Great American Return to Normal is coming.

From one citizen to another, I beg of you: Take a deep breath, ignore the deafening noise, and think deeply about what you want to put back into your life. This is our chance to define a new version of normal, a rare and truly sacred (yes, sacred) opportunity to get rid of the bullshit and to only bring back what works for us, what makes our lives richer, what makes our kids happier, what makes us truly proud. We get to Marie Kondo the shit out of it all. We care deeply about one another. That is clear. That can be seen in every supportive Facebook post, in every meal dropped off for a neighbor, in every Zoom birthday party. We are a good people. And as a good people, we want to define — on our own terms — what this country looks like in five, 10, 50 years. This is our chance to do that, the biggest one we have ever gotten. And the best one we’ll ever get.

We can do that on a personal scale in our homes, in how we choose to spend our family time on nights and weekends, what we watch, what we listen to, what we eat, and what we choose to spend our dollars on and where. We can do it locally in our communities, in what organizations we support, what truths we tell, and what events we attend. And we can do it nationally in our government, in which leaders we vote in and to whom we give power. If we want cleaner air, we can make it happen. If we want to protect our doctors and nurses from the next virus — and protect all Americans — we can make it happen. If we want our neighbors and friends to earn a dignified income, we can make that happen. If we want millions of kids to be able to eat if suddenly their school is closed, we can make that happen. And, yes, if we just want to live a simpler life, we can make that happen, too. But only if we resist the massive gaslighting that is about to come. It’s on its way. Look out.

 

I’d love to hear your comments…

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

Buy Phicklephilly THE BOOK now available on Amazon!

Listen to the Phicklephilly podcast LIVE on Spotify!

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Dating When You’re $120,000 In Debt

I thought my six-figure student-loan debt was making me undatable, but was it really the numbers that kept me from reaching the fourth date?

Here’s one from one of my female readers.

A lot hinges on the third date with a new person. By this point, you’ve seen enough of this potential significant other to determine the direction you want this newfound relationship to go in. A casual fling, your next serious partner, someone you’re sure you never want to see again—that’s all decided by date three. It’s the date on which you show your cards, air your dealbreakers, and hold your breath, waiting for the person on the other side of the table to respond.

So when you do have cards to show, you dread this date—which is how I felt sitting across from a man with whom I could envision a future, my mouth dry and my palms slick, trying to summon the power to reveal what I thought made me incredibly undatable. It was the reason I believed I was still single after countless awkward encounters. But I could tell things were going to progress between us—I was already imagining what falling in love with this beautiful bearded man would be like—and I knew I had to give him a chance to bail. Gathering all my courage, I formed the words I hated saying out loud: “I have student debt.”

After four years at the University of New Haven, a private university I couldn’t afford, and two years earning a master’s degree in journalism from New York University, I was saddled with a $120,000 debt for a career that did not guarantee a hefty return on investment. Although I loved my chosen field, I knew there were less expensive paths I could have taken. On my worst days, I spent hours tossing and turning in bed, desperately wishing I could go back in time and persuade myself to go to a cheaper school. I wished I had understood the gravity of what I was getting myself into, but I am the first child in my family to go to college, and neither my parents nor I truly understood the enormity of the debt I would be shouldering.

I felt suffocated, like I was barely treading water in a storm. I had already cut back in every aspect of my life—living at home with my mom, bringing lunch to work every day, switching to water after only one drink on a night out with friends—and it was barely a life I wanted to live. I couldn’t fathom finding a partner to join me in this misery because, ultimately, who would want to marry that burden?

I started to equate my self-worth with my net worth—and I was in the red.

I always knew dating in New York City was going to be hard. I had never been confident—I was self-conscious about my hips, my laugh, the way I rambled when nervous—and I often thought of a first date as Judgment Day. The few minutes before coming face-to-face with a man I had swiped into existence were always the worst; my heart would beat in my throat as I imagined him sizing me up, mentally comparing me with the person he had imagined me to be.

Being both single and in debt conjures anxiety like none other. You’re already at your most vulnerable while playing the field. Now mix in the possibility of rejection based on your financial situation. I started to equate my self-worth with my net worth—and I was in the red. If you’re worth what’s in your bank account, then I wasn’t just worth nothing. I was less than nothing.

I began to think, Why bother? I felt even if someone liked me for who I was, my finances would send him running. Choosing me meant hitching yourself to my debt—and why do that when someone with fewer financial complications was only a few swipes away?

It didn’t help that those fears had been confirmed. When I casually mentioned to the law student with dark olive skin and bright eyes that I had taken out loans for school, he had all but done a spit take. His eyes went wide and his head jerked back, as though the thought of anyone but your parents paying for college was ludicrous. “For journalism?” he asked. “Good luck ever paying those off!” He laughed, then took a swig of his beer, and a hot wave of shame washed over me. There was no fourth date.

Then there was the tall bass player sleeping on a mattress on a floor in Brooklyn who, despite all better judgment, I was very into. He hadn’t finished school and politely nodded when I broached the subject. In the moment, I felt relieved, but a week later, as I obsessively checked my phone for new messages and racked my brain for reasons he had gone silent, I couldn’t come up with anything other than my debt.

Sometimes the topic would surface naturally in conversation, which makes sense considering roughly one in four Americans are paying off student loans, averaging $28,800 nationally, after graduating. This happened on my second date with a charming physicist. He mentioned how many of his classmates had six figures’ worth of debt. He felt bad for them, he said, but he couldn’t relate. His grandparents had footed his bill. I swallowed hard as my stomach sank to my feet. This time, I didn’t bother bringing up my story; I already knew how this would end. Before we parted ways, we made plans to see each other that weekend, but after two restless nights, I canceled the date, using a canned excuse. “I’m just really trying to focus on work right now,” I said. “It’s not you; I’m just not ready for a relationship.”

Choosing me meant hitching yourself to my debt—and why do that when someone with fewer financial complications was only a few swipes away?

So, in September 2017, with a montage of these memories playing on a loop in my mind, I placed both sweaty palms on the table in front of me, looked into the eyes of the man I hoped to call my boyfriend, and said, “I have student debt. A lot of it.” He blinked once, twice, waiting for me to continue. When I didn’t, he cocked his head. “And … ?” he asked. I blurted: “Like, so much that I’ll probably be paying it off until I’m in my 60s.” He looked at me for a while longer, then shrugged his shoulders. “That blows, but you’ll get through it. You’re a motivated person.” And that was that. It didn’t come up again because he didn’t care. He didn’t like me any less. He didn’t disappear. We kept seeing each other until eventually we decided to date exclusively. My debt wasn’t the dealbreaker I had set it up to be.

Although my debt does come up when we plan for the future, it doesn’t seem like a liability; rather, it’s a challenge we’ll face together when the time comes to make big financial decisions. Since my debt-to-income ratio is skewed, we’ve discussed the possibility of leaving my name off the mortgage if we decide to buy a house. Although my debt is mine alone to pay back, he’s made it clear that I don’t have to weather the mental stress of it by myself.

Months after I bared all, he pointed out that I had gotten worked up for no reason. And that’s when it hit me: Worrying that my debt was making me undatable was what was actually making me undatable—not the debt itself. It was a self-fulfilling prophecy that I was willing into existence by stressing about it. Looking back at each failed date, I see now that it’s a very strong possibility that I was letting my anxieties and the shame I felt when I thought of my debt color how I interpreted the way those men had reacted.

Unless I’m the recipient of some huge windfall, my debt is something I’ll have to hack away at slowly over time, not something that will change overnight. What I can change is the way I perceive it and how I let it affect the way I conduct my life. My net worth doesn’t define me; my actions, my personality, and the way I live my life do. Instead of being heavy baggage, the thing I let determine my dating life, it’s now just another part of who I am. Now, two years after that fated third date, I’ve stopped worrying about it so much. Instead, I focus that energy on the relationship I’m in with the man who sat across from me that night, the one who accepted me for who I was, debt and all.

 

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Three Months Of Salary For An Engagement Ring? How About Go F*ck Yourself?

Here’s a re-post from one of my readers…

Felt it was worth sharing.

Engagement rings have become my cause de guerre. I’m thirty and well over half of my closest friends are either engaged or married, so these puppies seem to smack me in the face on Instagram every week now. Sure, I’m a hopeless romantic at heart. Notting Hill, No Strings Attached, You’ve Got Mail, When Marry Met Sally, the first 70 minutes of La La Land… if TV Guide magazine tells me any of these movies will be on TBS superstation, my night is booked. But when it comes to engagement rings, my mouth fills with acrid bile.

Engagement rings are a massive industry. Some people blame DeBeers; I blame women. Dangerous words in these delicate times, I know. But at some point, we need to realize that women are capable of being terrible people, just like men. That’s equality. That’s progress. To illustrate this thesis, we look to Instagram.

As wedding ring/engagement photos have proliferated across my Instagram feed, I’ve noticed a disturbing trend: many women post a photo of the ring and write “he did such a good job!” It’s a deflection, a humble downplay, like posting a shredded bikini pic while pretending to eat a hot dog with a caption like “empty calories, full stomach, can’t lose!” It’s meant to throw us off the scent of what it really is: a vagina-measuring contest. Because what’s really happening here is that she’s posting a photo of a commodity, the price of which we immediately start to estimate. And by we, I mostly mean other women, because they know the ring market.

An olive branch: if women just owned what they were doing with these posts, I’d applaud them for it. Remember ’90s hip hop videos, where rappers would flex in backwards football jerseys as a strobe light hit their $60,000 Jesus piece, triggering epileptic fits for unmedicated children? It was a flex, and they relished it. You didn’t see Diddy brandishing his new spinning Sprewell pendant with a disclaimer like “my friend bought me this, and he knows me so well! Thanks dude!” Today, similarly, these ladies are flexing their new ice on Instagram; but they couch it with deferential words to their buyer fiancé. I would have nothing but respect for a ring post with a caption like “Look at the size of this fucking thing! He spent more than I thought he would!”

But that would be too obvious. That would violate the weird, unspoken decorum of ringstagramming. Thus, we’re left with these thinly-veiled humblebrags that credit some hapless fellow who simply brandished six credit cards and held his breath. Not only do these dudes probably not give a shit about credit, they’re not worthy of it! When it comes to rings, you know who actually did a good job? Sam and Frodo. The ’72 Dolphins. The Motorola Razr. Heidi Fleiss. The Undertaker. Barnum and Bailey. These are first ballot ring HOFers; not your Dave.

I have a family ring from my late grandmother. As a family, we believe in heirlooms and preserving memories. Also, my grandmother was a powerful wizard who learned the dark art of splitting her soul, a portion of which lives on in the horcrux I plan to give my lady someday. The ring is beautiful, too. It’s a far nicer ring than I could buy right now from Zales or Adam Sandler.

Still, I can’t help but wonder how an Instagram post of this ring will be received. Do I somehow love her less because I didn’t spend three months of my salary on it? Do I need to buy her something to supplement the ring, to emphasize this promise?

Maybe. Or maybe I’ll take the money I saved on a ring and put it towards something nice for myself. After all, I saved. I was fiscally responsible. Dare I say… I did such a good job.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Habits That Keep You Broke

It is becoming more and more common for people to complain about their finances openly. It is no longer uncommon to hear your friends, family or acquaintances tell you that they are “too broke” for a specific event or purchase. Admitting that inflation has made life extremely expensive for the common man, there are some habits that tend to keep you broke perpetually. This is a state of being that exists regardless of how much wealth you inherit or how much money you earn that arises from consistently maintaining these financially terrible decisions.

Living Above Your Means

In a world where appearing rich has become more important than being rich, most people tend to live above their means. They manage their extravagant expenses on credit cards and other forms of debt, thus leaving them paying a substantial sum towards interest payments while living in constant worry over meeting bill payments.

You Don’t Track Your Money

If you constantly find yourself wondering where all your money went, then you fall into this category. A common mistake people make is not keeping track of their cash flow. Several apps are now available to help you keep track of this by noting your inflow sources, your outflow sources and presenting you with a composite chart of where your money is spent. It is important to know where you spend more of your money in order to be able to know where you can cut down on your spending.

You Remain Lazy About Your Finances

It is common for people to procrastinate with regard to those activities which do not excite them or which do not require immediate attention. Understanding and working about with your personal finances tends to fall into this category and gets pushed over to a stage in life where you’re in financial pain already or have too little money for savings. Keeping track of your finances on a weekly basis is our recommendation.

You Spend Before You Save

A common saying in the Finance World is “Pay yourself first”. This talks about the importance of your first chunk of income being set aside for savings and emergency cushions and the balance amount being used to pay bills and debt. This helps to keep you afloat in all situations as opposed to the strategy of spending lavishly while saving scarcely and erratically.

You Expect Quick Results

Another common mistake you make is that you’re trying to get rich quick. This leads to getting caught up in quick-money scams or dissolving investments at the slightest of losses. Building wealth takes time, patience and perseverance.

You Live In A Consumer’s Mind-set

Consumer Mentality focuses on extravagant purchases of items such as clothing, accessories, cars, boats, etc. However, focus on such purchases leads away from purchases in appreciating assets such as Real Estate, Commodities, Stocks, ad so on. Constantly focusing on consumer purchases rather than investor purchases leaves you happy in the moment but unhappy in the long run. A balance between the two is required in order to live a happy and financially healthy life.

You Are Trying To Impress The World

Thanks to social media and a consumer mentality, everyone’s trying to one-up their followers on Instagram and Twitter with materialistic purchases. Instead of spending wisely, you’d rather post pictures of the expensive shopping spree you went on or the luxury vacation you took, etc. Focusing on your own money goals is more important than impressing others who in turn are trying to impress you with their posts!

You Rely On Your Credit Card Wrongly

Credit cards give you access to purchases even when you don’t have money in hand. One of the biggest mistakes we can make is using our credit cards to purchase items which we cannot afford. This essentially helps us fall into debt traps and keeps us constantly broke.

You Have No Financial Goals

Setting financial goals is crucial as that is what provides you with incentive to implement your financial plans. Choosing to save over spending requires us to prioritize a future need in lieu of today’s desire. This isn’t an easy choice to stick to but can be made easier by knowing that the money you’re keeping aside is for a new house, higher education, a comfortable retirement, etc.

You Don’t Know Basic Finance

No matter how many experts you get on board for help, you must be able to take charge of your money. Knowing the basics of investing, saving and personal finance can make all the difference in your thinking and spending habits.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Alicia – Chapter 5 – Get Her Number

I used to be at war with my demons and now we’re all on the same side.

I need my sleep from life in general. I wake late on Monday morning. There are things I need to do. They need to happen today. The first day of the week. I have to go deposit my check and talk to Alicia.

There’s no real reason to do any of this, other that the directive that always drives me. I like Alicia my favorite teller, and I want to break the shell of her understanding and take her to a nice lunch. I want to get to know her.

Why?

Why not. I’m attracted to her and her aloofness. That and those arms. It’s weird but it’s mine. There’s something unique about her. If I can just secure some time with her outside the credit union I can learn all about her. Is it for me or the blog?

Do I really want to get to know this stranger that handles my money or am I just doing this to create content for phicklephilly?

Have I done things before that have simply driven the blog? I’m starting to think that I have. I’m managing my current relationship as best I can and all of the facets that come with that but why this teller?

I know nothing about her. She’s behind bulletproof glass. Is this simply a new goal for me to keep my life interesting and drop the dopamine?

I’m starting to think that. Is the art now driving my life?

I don’t have a problem with that but I can feel the anxiety placing its cold fingers around my heart as I climb the steps to my credit union.

I take some deep breaths as I unbutton my overcoat and loosen my scarf.

“I need to get into character and just do this.”

I walk into the credit union and head to the desk. I fill out my deposit slip. My hands are shaking a bit. Am I just nervous or are dementia tremors kicking in from the drinking? I write my name and social security number and it looks like the writing of an old man.

I’m 55. Middle age has got me by the throat, but I still have mad game and after decades of dealing with my anxiety and depression… I can push those loser off me.

I know what I’m going to say. I worked it out all weekend. I’m ready. I’m going to run the program like I always have. I’m so good at this now. I turn to Depression and tell him to cheer up and go to work. I turn to Anxiety and tell him to settle down and just be excited at the prospect of a new lady.

I used to be at war with these demons and now we’re all on the same side.

Get in line.

I’m standing there with my paperwork. There are tellers waiting on customers. Just another boring Monday at the office.

I see her.

Alicia.

Her back is turned and she’s working on something at the back counter behind the teller area.

Fuck! She won’t see me. I’ll have to go to one of these other people.

Bust suddenly she turns and sees me. She smiles.

“I can take you down here.”

Time to close this.

I scamper down to her window. The credit union’s quiet. I need to do this now. I push my check and deposit slip into the slit under the bulletproof glass.

“How are you? Nice to see you.”

“You too.”

This is where the rubber meets the road my friends. The move has to be made now or you will lose forever.

“You said you like french toast.”

“Yeah” she smiles.

“On the weekends brunch goes to 3pm, but during the week breakfast ends at 11am. Most end at 10:30. The only place to get french toast in this city during the week after 11am is Midtown Diner. I’m not taking you there. Great spot, but no. I spoke with my friend Jason at Square 1682. He’s the General Manager. I described the dilemma of your 11am lunch break. He told me if I email him and give him the day we’re meeting for lunch he assured me that you will have french toast for lunch at 11 even though breakfast ends at 10:30. And the french toast at Square 1682 is slammin.”

Alicia is listening intently and smiles. She is delighted by my efforts.

This is how you date my friends.

Go slowly. Build the trust. Make her laugh. Make her feel safe. Be non menacing. Be trustworthy. Be creative. Bend time. Be original. Be extraordinary.

So many men fire off to quickly and blow it. My father taught me to be the lion lying in the grass and doing nothing. Like wine it could take years. Most men aren’t that patient. You have to be if you want something. I’ve waited years for the things I’ve wanted.

If you can do that and be elegant, you’ll close the sale and win the girl.

It may not work out, but it’s never the kill. It’s the thrill of the chase.

That’s the true rush of romance. The best part. The unknown. The excitement of the possibilities.

This could just be a lunch, but I want nothing more from Alicia. I love the idea of the old horse being able to get a lunch date with a beautiful young girl though bulletproof glass can still happen.

I tell her my efforts and Alicia is entranced.

“I can’t do this week, but next Thursday at 11 would work.”

“Perfect. May have your number?”

Alicia grabs a pink post it and scrawls down her phone number. She sticks it to my deposit receipt and thrusts it back to me under the glass.

 

The die has been cast. I’ve won after over a year of desire.

I tell her I’ll push her my contact info in a text. She smiles and agrees.

I’ve done it.

There is a pause and we look into each others eyes. We smile and I realize I have all I need and my transaction is done.

“Okay then. I’ll set it up.”

“Yea. Have a great day, Charles.”

“I have some more checks to deposit so I’ll see you soon.”

“Okay.” (smiles)

I walk out of the credit union. Should I go out and have a celebratory smoke or go eat before my shift at the salon because I have to train the new girl (Eileen or Amelia) tonight?

Go eat. You’ve earned it buddy!

 

Lunch date with hot Alicia!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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13 Things Rich People Don’t Spend Their Money On, While Poor People Are Ready to Take Out Loans for Them

There are things that speak to a person’s financial wealth. Usually, they are things like fur coats, fine jewelry, and expensive watches. Some poor people are ready to save their money for years or even take out loans to be able to buy these things. However, rich people around the world have gradually stopped indicating their social status this way.

We at Bright Side are big supporters of sensible spending and that’s why we want to highlight symbols of wealth that are not trendy anymore. There are still many people who haven’t realized this yet.

1. Gold jewelry

Stylish and wealthy women usually wear a moderate amount of gold jewelry when attending events. In addition, the quality of these items is the biggest priority for them. Some of them even prefer large jewelry.

For those whose financial position is not stable, buying gold is still considered an investment. It is believed that by buying a gold item, you create a stash for rainy days in the form of a gold chain or a ring. That’s why poor girls prefer to wear jewelry with the mantra: “I’m wearing the best of what I have.”

2. Clothes and shoes from expensive brands

Oftentimes, even very wealthy people are indifferent to branded clothing and wear ordinary, mass-market jeans and sweaters that are basic items in their wardrobe and in their everyday life. In one of his interviews, Bill Gates outlined that the watch on his wrist cost $10, despite the fact that he could afford millions of watches from the most famous brands. Instead of shopping, rich people try to explore the other pleasures that life has to offer, like entertainment and travel. This means more to them than a brand new bag.

3. Plastic surgery

Earlier, plastic surgery was pretty popular around the world — everyone wanted to have a perfect body and a flawless face. Rich men would even offer to pay for the transformation of their “chosen ones,” while the girls didn’t mind at all. Today more and more celebrities and wealthy people are against plastic surgery and are promoting having love for one’s body and wrinkles.

Meanwhile, many girls are still ready to cut back on a lot of things in order to save enough money for lip and breast surgeries, as well as other procedures that could help them look young and meet the current understanding of beauty ideals, which are actually fading into the past.

4. Fur coats

Famous designers and their wealthy clients are refusing to wear fur coats, since they believe that it is unethical to wear them. There were cases when animal advocates poured paint on girls who were wearing fur coats. In addition, California state has a law banning the wearing and selling of natural fur.

But fur coats are still considered a luxury item and an indicator of social status for some girls. However, theoretically, they can be easily replaced by frost-resistant down jackets, winter coats, or warm fur coats that are made of artificial fur.

5. Flying in business class

Rational people around the world want to travel modestly, even if they have the financial ability to pay more. For example, the founder of IKEA, Ingvar Kamprad, believes that flying business class is an unnecessary luxury, that’s why all IKEA employees, despite their level, fly in economy class and stay in inexpensive hotels.

However, many people with a moderate income are ready to overpay for a trip in business class, despite the fact that prices for air tickets continue to rise and business class tickets have seen the highest increases. In fact, thanks to the existence of expensive business class fares, airlines can keep affordable fares for economy class. When we know about this fact, business class flights stop looking so attractive.

6. Home appliances

Wealthy people don’t strive to buy the latest models of home appliances. If the previous model they bought still works perfectly, they see no need to buy a new one. At the same time, this rule is constantly broken by people with an average income — consumer loans are taken out for any household appliances and gadgets.

This also relates to “one-time” home appliances like waffle irons, pancake makers, ice cream makers, and fondue pots, as well as massagers with 15 nozzles. Most often, people use these super devices only one or 2 times, and afterward they just lie on a shelf and “stare” at their owners with dumb reproach for insensibly spent money.

7. A lot of knick-knacks

Successful people try to keep minimalism in their home’s design. Rich people increasingly prefer simplicity in their interiors, so as not to be distracted by household items and so they don’t waste time choosing and buying furniture, or repairing it. It helps them free up time for family, relationships, meeting friends, and work.

Oftentimes, the middle class try to fill their houses with various interior details and the latest trendy things. They strive to constantly improve their interior, distracting themselves from the really important immaterial things.

8. A big house

Wealthy people prefer to buy promising real estate, for little money, in order to make a profit when it grows in price. For example, billionaire Warren Buffett still lives in the same modest house that he bought in 1958. His cozy house in Nebraska state only cost him $30,000, today it’s estimated to be worth $650,000.

A Mexican billionaire whose fortune is estimated at $50 billion, also lives in a modest house that was bought long ago and avoids expensive things. Amancio Ortega, the founder of the Zara clothing store chain, also didn’t let his success infatuate him — he and his wife live in an ordinary house in Spain. A professor at Stanford University, David Cheriton, who owns $1.3 billion in Google shares, once said in his interview, “These people who build houses with 13 bathrooms and so on, there’s something wrong with them.”

The middle class, in contrast, is mainly driven by the saying, “Every man should plant a tree, build a house, and give birth to a son.” That’s why the life of many people starts to center around the construction of a big house, that sometimes doesn’t stop until the kids grow up. It takes a lot of money, time, and energy, while the expenses for maintaining the house itself and its territory take a big part of their income.

9. Luxury cars

Nowadays, wealthy people don’t buy new car brands if their own car is in good condition and meets all their needs. Even Facebook owner, Mark Zuckerberg, drives a Volkswagen with a manual transmission and says he never cared about “looking” rich.

However, many people around the world use expensive cars to boost their self-esteem and even not having the money to buy or maintain a vehicle like this doesn’t prevent them from getting one. They just take out car loans.

10. An expensive education

Millionaires know that a free education doesn’t differ much from an expensive one, while success in life is obtained by discipline, determination, and perseverance. In addition, nowadays big international companies are ready to hire young people for work, if they have the necessary knowledge. This means that professional experience and real skills are becoming more important than a college diploma.

At the same time, many people believe that if they pay for an education and get a diploma, they are buying a ticket to a successful life. As a result, young people take out huge loans to pay for their education, but after graduation, they have to work outside of their specialty for the next 5-10 years to pay back the loan to the bank, which means they spend the most precious years of their life doing this.

11. Buying lots of toys for their kids

Successful people came to the conclusion that they could harm their children by buying toys in unlimited quantities. Research proves it too: 36 children were offered the chance to play for half an hour with 4 or 16 toys. It was found that the kids from the first group (the ones who had 4 toys) showed more creativity and came up with more interesting ideas using fewer objects. If parents spend time with their kids and pay more attention to them, they will develop faster than if they are simply playing with a lot of toys.

At the same time, most parents admit that their kids are literally snowed under toys: their stuffed toys are so big that they require a separate apartment, their amount of dolls is so big that they could build a doll army, there are so many Legos that it’s possible to build a 2-story house out of them. Kids don’t have time to dream — they have everything and all their wishes come true too quickly. That’s the way parents show their love to their kids and give them the things they themselves didn’t have in their childhood.

12. Training and courses

Personal growth courses are a business, and the coaches there are not interested in the effective development of their clients. Because of this, it is impossible to transform your life drastically with the help of a training session like this. Successful people know that you can only change your life by continuously working on yourself and your goals.

At the same time, these courses have become incredibly popular among people who are planning to become successful. Even though their cost is pretty high, tickets are still sold really quickly. Poor people are often trying to find a magic pill that will change their life for the better. When one pill doesn’t work, they start to seek help from another coach.

13. The beauty sphere

Today, the natural color of nails speaks to privilege and wealth. Successful women prefer a neat, natural nail, in a modest pastel or nude shade that looks nice.

But many girls want to be sure that their manicure is noticeable by everyone around them, which is why they often opt for brighter colors of nail polish, unique designs with rhinestones, and extreme lengths. If the length is not enough, they go for artificial nails. This style is often chosen by middle class women who want to show that they have an idle and relaxed lifestyle.

Which things do you consider a part of your social status and are you not ready to give up?

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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10 Ways To Stop Worrying About Money And Attract More Of It

It can feel unnatural to relax when you have bills pending and a dwindling bank account. But giving in to your fears won’t do anything to attract more money. In reality, giving in to your anxiety will generate negative energy that stops you from bringing more money into your life.

How to Stop Worrying and Attract More Money

Money comes and money goes, but worrying about it won’t make it come any faster. If you’d like to attract more money, keep reading to learn how to stop worrying and how to become the money magnet you really are.

1. Identify Any Negative Beliefs You Have About Money

Stop worrying about your bank account by recognizing your fears and any other negative beliefs you may have about money. Many people admit they are taught to never discuss money. Additionally, they believe that having a lot of money is evil, and that they should feel bad when spending money. These beliefs all stem from insecurity and need to be done away with if you hope to attract more money into your life.

Start becoming the money magnet you deserve to be by unlearning all these negative beliefs and replacing them with positive energy. It’s time for you to accept the idea that you deserve to have wealth.

2. Build a New Money Mindset with Positivity

The next step in learning how to stop worrying about money is the start of rebuilding your money mindset using positive affirmations. According to the law of attraction, what you think, you become. Thus, what you speak into your life will come to pass.

Start speaking positivity into your finances by using positive money affirmations on a regular basis. Begin every day by looking into a mirror and speaking the following types of affirmations to yourself:

  • I am a winner.
  • I‘m stepping into a new financial future.
  • My blessings and wealth are overflowing.
  • I deserve all the money I will make.

Positive affirmations like those above that tap into the law of attraction and your ability to bring about a change in your life with the type of energy you exude. By already believing that you deserve money and that you’re already building the wealth that you’re working towards, your life will automatically align to reach these goals.

3. Learn What You Deserve in Life

What stops many people from going after what they want is the fact that they don’t believe that they deserve it.

Want to get out of debt? Want to build generational wealth? While these may seem like lofty goals right now, the moment you already know that you deserve these things in your life is the moment that you start attracting them towards yourself.

The best thing about this obstacle of feeling undeserving is that you are fully in control of it. Stop worrying that you’ll never be financially stable and begin stepping into what you deserve.

Your dreams are only as big as you allow them to be and you deserve to dream big. Don’t give in to the insecurity that makes you feel undeserving. You are worthy of living the best life.

Start working on attracting what you deserve in life by realizing new goals. Do you hope to buy a house? Are you planning to build your savings? Write down all of your financial goals and understand that you deserve every single one of them.

4. Love Your Bills to Attract More Money

We have all been guilty of hating having to pay our bills. However, avoiding or hating your bills only adds more negative energy to your finances.

While it may seem absurd to try to love your bills, this little bit of love will go a long way. The key to attracting more money when paying your bills is to be confident, grateful, and happy as you pay the bills.

This is why part of learning how to stop worrying about money is to stop seeing bills as a black hole for your earnings. Your bills are a symbol of the life that you live, the blessings you enjoy, and your ability to finance your quality of life.

Additionally, the happier you are about getting to pay these bills, the more you will value the money you earn that you use to pay your bills. This positive energy and happiness will translate to you feeling more positive about the work you do and how you earn your money.

5. Be Happy for Others’ Financial Success

Jealousy and the feeling of missing out are strong motivators. We’ve all experienced feeling a certain sense of insecurity when we see others sharing about their luxury lifestyles or abundant lives. While these feelings can be inescapable at times, feeling this way isn’t effective if you’re hoping to stop worrying about your own finances.

Instead of feeling negative about yourself and financial situation when you see others doing well, start rejoicing for them. As you feel happier for the wealth that others are enjoying, the more the same energy will return to you.

Start destroying these negative and envious feelings by genuinely expressing excitement when you see someone else thriving. Speak the same into your life by telling yourself, “You deserve the same. You will have the same.”

This simple shift from jealousy to hopeful positivity will immediately affect how money flows into your life. Instead of being unhappy with where you are in your finances, your new happiness for others will spill over to your current situation, ultimately leading you to attract more money into your life.

6. Visualize Financial Abundance

Visualization is a powerful tool to bring about a change in your life. Do you want to increase your finances and live the lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of? Start visualizing it.

Visualize the life you want, deserve, and will have by writing out what you hope to see. And, imagine that you are living that life right now. While this may seem like a strange exercise, it will help to ease any fears you feel and help you to believe are already leading the life you long for.

To make visualization part of your daily life, commit to spending a few moments in the morning or at night to meditate on your money affirmations and visualize the life you long for. This will help you keep your goals fresh in your mind as you actively work to make them a reality each day.

7. Recognize Prosperity in Your Life

Prosperity is everywhere you go, if you know what to look for. By recognizing prosperity, you’ll be inviting it into your life.

Too often, we’re programmed to seek out poverty and notice what’s lacking in life. From your bank account to the world around you, you may be naturally inclined to see what’s wrong rather than look for what’s right.

Start transforming the way you look at life by automatically seeking out prosperity. In order for you to prosper, you must first be able to recognize prosperity.

 

 

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