The best way to predict the future is to create it.Abraham Lincoln
We are all living the corona life right now. We dream of going outside, travel, dine in a restaurant, visit friends and family. At this time, there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel. But as it appears life will never be the same as before. Our lives have been affected financially more than anything else. Many jobs lost, hours reduced, and businesses closed.
This time is hard for everyone. If this time is bringing you down emotionally and financially, ask the question – What’s the opportunity here? (as Robin Sharma would say). What can we do now, that would make for a better future? What action can you take now, that will help you if and when we have to deal with this again?
Here are a four steps you can take now protect yourself from a financial stress looming around the corner –
- Cut unnecessary expenses – Consider going minimal in your lifestyle. It is super easy. Take out anything that isn’t an essential thing and/or doesn’t bring joy into your life. Cancel subscriptions for things you don’t use anymore. We saved over $1000 a month by getting rid of expenses we didnt need to get to our house goals quicker.
- Create multiple streams of income – Create a lifestyle where think about having more than one income source. Here are some ideas for multiple income streams –
- Side hustle – handmade (etsy/shopify – like I do – handmadeovercoffee.com). There are a few books by Chris Guillebeau which are all about side hustles and ideas for them.
- Rental income/airbnb – if you have real estate investments, or spare bedroom, rent it out to cover mortgage and other expenses
- Income from stocks (dividends, royalties, capital gains)
- Emergency savings – This is what is going to save you in the worst scenarios. To start with you must have at least a months expenses and build gradually once you have paid off debts. This is for true emergencies!! and not 50% off at your favorite store.
- Pay off debt first – While you are busy creating income streams, it is crucial to put that extra cash as payments into your debt until they are done first before anything else. This will really boost your savings in the long term.
BONUS – Review your finances regularly – Weekly/monthly/quarterly reviews make a huge difference. Keep an excel sheet or use one of the apps to keep track of your income expenses and savings. My husband and I have an excel sheet where we put our budget, goals, income, debts. It really motivates us to work harder towards our goals.
We have the power to protect our future. Life was not promised to be smooth sailing. there will be ups and there will be downs. They make us resilient and strong. We are grateful each day to be in a place where we have shelter, water, food, health and love. I am sure we will all get through this and emerge stronger, and wiser.