I recently had a conversation with a very bright, but self-admitted and purposefully undisciplined woman. She wants to do better with her money but does not want to change her ways. No Budget for her – No way, No how.
This presents quite a conundrum for a whiz-bang financial coach. Someone whispers they want to become wealthy; I’m all about finding a way to make it happen.
Here’s someone who professes a desire to “do better”. With a bit of conversation, we could grow that tiny seed of desire into a little sprout of a goal. Unfortunately, without a willingness to change, our sprout, in all probability, will wither and die.
This woman has a lot of wealth-building potential. She’s employed and in a position that holds promise for future advancement. She is not overspending on her basic living expenses; housing, utilities and transportation costs are all reasonable.
But she is not ready to change. Every dollar that finds the way to her hand is going to be spent on “good times”. She’s not going to make a budget and she’s not going to track her spending.
Enter the Redshirt Wealth Building Plan.
You know how a college basketball or football coach might hold out a very talented athlete their freshman year, allowing them to grow and mature a little more without losing eligibility? Well, we use that same idea here. Redshirt freshmen get to practice that first year; they just don’t get to play in the games.
Participants in the Redshirt Wealth Building Plan:
Stop borrowing. Redshirts may not borrow. Hide, cut up or give your mom your credit cards for safekeeping.
Embezzle Funds. No; not from someone else – from yourself. Open a savings account; ing is easy and online. Do it right now. We don’t ask redshirts to think much just yet. Decide how much you could live without each paycheck and make that transfer happen automatically.
Pay as you go. Live your life using your debit card and the money in your checking account. Don’t look at your savings, don’t even think about it and definitely don’t touch it.
Measure your Progress. Set an appointment with yourself every 60 days and ask yourself two questions: Can you increase your savings amount? Are you ready to make a commitment to get in the game?
It’s OK to give yourself some time to develop some muscle; but be sure to follow the redshirt plan so we don’t have to waste your wealth-building efforts digging out of a hole.