Blog | Personal Finance

Make Money, Not Excuses

Now’s the time to own your current financial situation (and take action to improve it)

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When writing my book, It's Rising Time!, I discovered some interesting information about women and money, including:

  • Between one-third and two-thirds of women now aged 35 to 55 will be impoverished after age 65 if they do not immediately start to prepare financially for their later years, according to Dr. Christopher L. Hayes, Founder and Executive Director of the National Center for Women and Retirement Research.

  • A study in Britain reveals that 59% of wives would leave their husbands if they could afford it! The survey of 2,000 adults revealed that 12% would stay in an unhappy relationship just for an easy life.

  • According to the Population Reference Bureau, 26% of women ages 65 to 74 lived alone in 2018. The number jumped to 39% for women ages 75 to 84. This is due in part to women’s higher life expectancy than their male partners.

  • Women in America are 35% more likely than men to be poor in America, according to Legal Momentum, a national nonprofit that leads action for the legal rights of women. Also, 35% of single women with children live and raise their families in poverty.

  • The poverty rate for elderly women was 11 percent in 2017; women made up nearly two-thirds of the elderly poor, according to the National Women’s Law Center’s analysis of U.S. Census data released in 2018.

Do these statistics concern you? I sure hope so, because they absolutely terrify me.

But the question is…

How can you take care of others if you don't take care of yourself?

It's just like the flight attendants say right before take-off: “Secure your own air mask before helping your children with theirs.” These are words to live by whether or not you’re flying. It’s time to make money, not excuses — so that you’re taking care of yourself and are able to take care of others as well.

With this in mind, it's time to take control of your financial situation, and that starts with a financial education.

Major money excuses

Have you ever looked at someone successful and thought, “I wish I could do that. But I can't because I'm not ... talented enough, smart enough, rich enough, pretty enough, lucky enough...” You get the idea. Fill in the blank. We often view those who have achieved success as being gifted with extraordinary powers or luck that we ourselves don’t possess. If you find your thoughts traveling along this line of thinking, here’s a quote to consider:

“Don't let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin where he was.” —Richard Evans

Just let that sink in for a moment. Everyone starts out with challenges, even the most successful people. Overcoming those challenges and reaching one's goals despite the odds stacked against them, is what propels some people to success. For those who buy into the excuses about why they can't achieve something, their thoughts become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Studies indicate that women do not pursue their dreams of financial freedom because they lack time and knowledge. Also, they are simply overwhelmed by all the information out there.

Since we’re here today to make money, not excuses, let’s bust each of these excuses one by one:

  • No time? Everyone is busy with work, family matters, chores, school, fun activities, and more. It's a matter of making your financial education a priority. And with current, economic conditions, it's a necessity that affects your entire family and overall well-being — so set aside some time in your schedule each day devoted to learning.

  • No knowledge? It's not difficult to increase your financial literacy. Start by reading the content on this site and using the free resources we have. For instance, we offer free classes and workshops that can help you learn about investing, fix your credit, manage your money, plan your retirement and build your business. Figure out what you need to learn, and get the support of experts, peers, family members, and others to help you move forward.

  • Too much information?

    Yes, there is a lot of information available. A good way to begin your financial education process is to learn basic, financial words and definitions first. Start by reading my book Rich Woman, as it will give you the foundation for starting your path toward financial independence.

Start reading newspapers and magazines, watch television and Internet shows, and listen to radio programs about money. You'll start to become more knowledgeable and be able to prioritize the information that is important to your financial freedom dreams.

Make money not excuses, when it comes to investing

One of the smartest ways women can reach financial independence is through investing. Why? Because of these many pros of real estate investing. But when it comes to investing in particular, some of the common obstacles women face are:

  • Little or no money saved up for investing

  • Low income, living from paycheck to paycheck, or buried in debt

  • Little financial knowledge

  • No one in their circle of friends and family to turn to for support or advice on investing

  • Tried investing in the past, suffered losses, and afraid to try again

  • Family commitments make finding time to learn or invest challenging

  • Stressful job, long hours

  • No job, no income security

You may be able to identify with some of the challenges listed above, or have your own unique challenges. Instead of focusing on why your circumstances make it impossible to focus on investing, ask yourself how you can invest despite your challenging circumstances. Yes, that’s precisely how you’ll make money, not excuses.

Your dreams are important and worth pursuing. You can achieve them if you develop a creative mindset instead of an excuse mindset. Instead of saying, “I can't do that,” ask yourself, "How can I do that?” This simple shift in your thinking will open your world to new ideas and new possibilities. Oh, and you’ll be happy to hear that there are six ways to find investing money for beginners that won’t take a cent from your own pocket!

Be honest: Are you making money excuses?

If you are depending on others for your financial well-being, ignoring economic conditions and making excuses, then I’m sorry to say it, but your chances of enjoying financial freedom are slim.

With this in mind, make learning about money a priority today. Get the financial education you need to succeed, and most important, take action on what you learn. Then, excuses will be a thing of the past, and you'll have control over your finances no matter what happens in the future.

Original publish date: January 19, 2012

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