The First Step to Taking Control of Your Money
- Stewardship.com Team stewardship.com
- 2017 1 Feb
If you’ve committed to transforming your financial life this year, you’ve probably been focusing a lot on behavior change. Things like cooking more food at home and eating out less, paying with cash instead of a credit card, and making a budget every month.
If so, that’s awesome! Those kinds of actions are critical to achieving financial peace once and for all. But here’s the thing: Sometimes people quit. When it comes to New Year’s resolutions, for example, most people have jumped off the bandwagon by December, as reported by StatisticBrain.com. Don’t be one of them!
Start with the right mindset.
Many times, people quit because they just don’t have the right mind-set. Behavior change isn’t enough on its own to predict success. To see your money goals to the finish, you need to combine that behavior change with the right way of thinking.
Here’s what we mean. If you’re serious about creating a better financial future for yourself, you have to start your journey by getting mad at your money problems. You have to actually believe you can overcome them. It’s the first step!
Related: Learn practical steps to beat debt and take control of your money. Sign up for Financial Peace University
Declare a wholehearted commitment to overcome your money problems.
Beginning the process with that attitude—as opposed to an attitude that’s halfhearted and unsure—can be the difference between success and failure.
In 1 Corinthians 9:24 (NIV), Paul describes that sort of mindset like this: “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.”
Running to win sets you up for success! Now, everyone will experience a behavior setback at some point—everyone. If you’re hopeful and confident in your abilities, you’ll realize a setback doesn’t have to determine your future and you’ll quickly course-correct. But if your mindset isn’t rock-solid, you’ll equate that setback to total failure and fall into your old ways.
The right mindset really is a powerful tool!
The Bible points to this truth. In Philippians 4:8 (NLT), Paul encourages the people to, “Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”
Paul understood the power of positive thinking, specifically when that revolves around Christ. He told the Romans “not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2, ESV).
Ready to freshen up your own mindset to reach your money goals this year? If you’ve already set your financial goals, it’s not too late to make some small adjustments to your thinking to see a big payoff when it comes to lasting behavior change.
Maintain your mindset and try this:
First, take a look at your goals and expectations around your finances and make sure they’re realistic. Choosing store brands over name brands at the grocery store is a better way to reduce your food budget than eating cold cereal for dinner every single night, for example.
Then accept that you’ll probably slip up at least once. When it happens, don’t think of it as the end of the road. Get back up and keep pushing toward your goal! And celebrate smaller successes along the way. Those little bits of encouragement will keep you motivated!
Most importantly, maintain your mindset throughout the process. Keep your thoughts fixed on Christ, your attitude hopeful, and your confidence unshakable. That will keep you focused on your goals with each new challenge that comes your way.
Learn Dave Ramsey’s 7 easy-to-follow Baby Steps to create a budget, get out of debt and make a plan for your money! Learn more about Financial Peace University!
This article originally appeared on Stewardship.com. Used with permission.
Photo Credit: ©Thinkstock