Step Six: Financial Workout
Our goals with the financial workout are to rebalance our spending by dissolving some of our bad spending habits and keeping our spending in check. The best way to create or dissolve any habit is by repetition. Now, you might think that a financial workout's goal is based on a dollar amount, but instead we're aiming for habit building.
Create a list of financial exercises:
Anything that saves money, reduces debts, or increases our savings and investments can be an exercise. Create a list of 10–15 financial exercises that you can do throughout the week. The best exercises are the ones we create ourselves, so get creative and pick out small areas of spending that could use the most improvement.
Here are some examples:
Set Your Level
You have to work for everything great in life, but don't try to aim too high at first. Take each step with pride. Ideally, we start at the bottom and increase our level each month for three months, working towards our financial training goals.
Noob: 1–4 Financial Exercises/Week
The noob starts the show. If you haven't played a video game in the last 15 years, this term may be foreign to you. Being a ‘ noob’ simply means that you're new to the game, and nobody wants you on his/her team.
Experienced: 5–8 Financial Exercises/Week
We're off to the races. We've got our feet wet, and are now digging in. From going to the store to paying our bills, our exercises are planned out, and we're keeping our eyes open for opportunities to increase our efficiency.
Veteran: 9–12 Financial Exercises/Week
These people are so fine-tuned in their spending that they even ask the gas station clerk for a discount!
Set Your Schedule
Here is where we need to decide and plan our exercises. Throughout our week, we have many opportunities that are best hit on certain days.
The above example list puts us at the top of the experienced level with eight exercises, but during our week, we can find even more ways to pick up extra points, which will put us into the veteran level by the third month.