5 Free Tools to Help You Get Your Finances Straight

Girl in boots

I have a renewed interest in my finances.

That sounds really terrible and I know that I should always have an interest in my finances, but honestly, I don’t. Like with most things in my life, my desire to sit at my desk and crunch numbers ebbs and flows. Sometimes I can be extremely enthusiastic about the possibility of knowing where every red cent is going and on other days, I’m like, “yeah whatever.” It’s difficult for me to get and maintain that level of consistency needed to get (and keep) my finances straight. And I’m talking straight.

Knowing:

What’s coming out?

What’s going in?

What are the best investments?

Did I make a sound financial decision?

Umm, when is the electric bill due again?

I need systems and tools to see my money clearly and know what’s going on with it at all times.

A case for systems and tools

I should start this part by saying that I love, love, love systems. I am a sucker for routine, no matter how much I try to deny it. The INTJ in me just loves a good systematic approach! That, on the other hand, may not  be your thing. You may be a fly by the seat of your pants kinda gal and that’s okay. But let me at least try to turn you out…when it comes to systems.

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Managing Debt & Living Life

This is a sponsored post by Denny’s. All opinions (and debts) are mine.

Managing Debt

I’m pretty sure that I have more debt than the average 27 year-old millennial. Between mothering a kid with a chronic medical condition (hospital debt!!) and my shiny degree from the ritzy, private college, I owe people a lot. A whole lot. I’m not talking about, “OMG, how am I going to pay off this $5000 student loan that I just had to get to cover my last semester in college?” lot, but an “OMG, my insurance didn’t cover my C-section, my kid spent 12 days in the hospital when I’d just changed jobs and didn’t have insurance yet” kind of a lot. Sometimes it can be overwhelming to think of how much debt I’ve accumulated in my short 27 years. I’m trying to buy a house for goodness sake! That’s even more debt, even more people to owe. Ugh, what’s a girl to do?

Living with lots of debt

To be fair, I’ve had the internal tug of war between throwing everything I have towards the debt versus just living with it–on a near daily basis. It’s hard to willingly “blow money” on fun things when you have so much debt hanging over your head, day in and day out. In the end, though, I’ve always sided with living with the debt, doing what I can to manage it, but not stopping my life because of it. I just feel like life is too short to always be living for tomorrow. Yep, debt elimination is important and something that everyone should strive for. But am I going to miss out on any part of my life because of it? Not a chance.

I know this sounds like something a cocky millennial would say and that’s probably because I’m knee deep in millennialism right now. At 27, I see things a bit differently than, say, a 37 year-old might. I’m in the thick of it, with a family, and I’m doing the very best I can to manage my debt, but still live my life.

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