GUEST BLOGGER: TASHA KILLIAN
Where are all the single ladies at? There’s got to be more than just me out here who follow this account that aren’t yet Utah Money “Moms”, right? If that’s the case, this blog post is for YOU. Let me introduce myself, I’m Tasha Killian. I’m an Assistant Professor for Utah State University Extension and I am single.
As a single person, budgeting, money, and finances are approached in a way that is different than our friends and family members with partners. According to research done by Ameritrade, less than one third of single people feel secure in their finances, and to top that off, the majority of single people who reported feeling secure were men. So, my fellow single ladies, the goal of this blog post and my future blog posts, will be to share some skills you can apply to help you build financial security now, without waiting for a partner.
As a single person, there’s a possibility that there’s a question mark tied to your financial identity because you don’t know what your family situation will be in the future. That makes it easy to spend a lot and not have a savings plan or any financial goals in mind, because eventually the hope is that someone else will come along and you’ll work on your finances together. At least, that’s how I spent my money for a long time. Until one day I realized that although my life hasn’t turned out how I’ve expected it to, my finances are one thing I can control. I decided I needed to set some financial goals for myself. Learning from others, I followed these steps and began my journey to financial security as a single lady.
Step 1 – Evaluate where you are now. Just like anyone following a road map or trying to get to a destination, you can’t get there if you don’t know where you are currently.
Step 2 – Envision where you want to be financially. Even if you envision yourself with a partner in 5 or 10 years, you can still envision where you’d like yourself to be financially with that partner, and if your current spending habits don’t match up with those goals, now is the best time to change that!
Step 3 – Set realistic goals. Jon Acuff, an expert on setting and accomplishing goals, talks about how when we set goals, we often set unrealistic goals that are greater than what we can actually accomplish. His suggested solution to that is to cut the goal in half. So, if your goal is to save a certain amount in 6 months, either cut the desired money amount in half, or lengthen the time you plan on saving. This makes the goal more realistic and easier to accomplish.
Step 4 – Think long-term, but be flexible. Life happens, and will continue to happen. Your goals may change, your life situation may change. Keep that in mind as you move forward.
Being single doesn’t mean you have to be insecure about your finances. You can take control of your finances today. You can depend on yourself and you can accomplish your goals. The best thing any single person can do is find a community, and learn from others.
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