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I Don’t Want to Be Broke in 2017

I don’t want to be broke in 2017. And by hook or by crook I will not be broke in 2017.

To be brutally honest, 2016 was a year that showed me anything is possible as long as I work for it. The year started off with me busting my butt to pass a project management certification and I did it.  Then there was that crappy bank that charged an unfair and unethical service charge, so I closed the account. Let’s not forget about the annoying line of credit that pissed me off for which I used the debt snowball method to pay off.

Next year’s list of things to do is very long. But nothing on that list is impossible. I made a list for 2016, which detailed all of the things that I wanted to accomplish. Some of the things on the list I have no control over, so I am definitely not heartbroken that they did not occur. There are other things that I knew might not be possible in 2016 and would have to be penciled into 2017. And that’s perfectly okay.

But at the top of my list for 2017 is declaring for the world to hear that I don’t want to be broke in 2017.

Here’s my plan for 2017 greatness which will guarantee that I will not be broke in 2017:

1. Boost My Emergency Fund

I need to be prepared for anything including losing my job. Although I’ve been there for a while, I refuse to get sucked into a false sense of security that my job is secure. Past experience has taught me that things can change so quickly with businesses and just because today is good, does not mean that tomorrow will be good. So, I’m going to boost my emergency fund to cover at least six months’ expenses and a little extra. This might be a struggle because of the goals that I want to accomplish in 2017, but I understand that it’s necessary.

2. Make Wise Financial Decisions

Making wise financial decisions is basically taking a look at what you want to do, assessing it based on your goals and needs and deciding if it is beneficial. I like to think that I make wise financial decisions which benefit me in the long run. But there are times when I do things without thinking about them. 2017 is a year that will require a more focused approach to my finances and my goals. I’m not going to spend excessive amounts of money on foolish things that do not add value to my life and my goals.

3. Start Building a Home Without a Mortgage

There is no one in this world who can convince me to get a mortgage to finance all of the stages of my first home. I’m in my mid thirties and I’ll be undertaking this project on my own. Yes, it will be a hard and long process to build out of pocket initially, but I think that it will be worth it. The alternative is a 30-35 year mortgage which will put me past retirement age. I’ve been saving towards completing the first stage of the home and I’m practically there. This point alone describes why I don’t want to be broke in 2017 or any of the subsequent years. A mortgage is not all bad, but it’s just not the only solution for me.

4. Work Harder on My Side Hustles

My former supervisor always said that you should never really depend on one job. This inspired me to undertake several initiatives outside of my main job which have been very rewarding. I’ve gained knowledge and experience and made valuable side income. Next year I plan on working harder on this blog and maybe even create a few personal finance products. I also want to develop my web business which includes blog and website writing, and a project management consulting business that I’ve had for awhile.

5. Increase My Earning Power

I had hoped that my previous studies would have opened more doors for a fulfilling full-time career. But since that has not happened, I’ve decided to make use of some resources at my disposal to continue studying. Unfortunately, it’s not the dream PhD that I will be pursuing, but I believe that it will help me to increase my earning power. My biggest hurdle in getting into my dream career is not having enough experience. Qualifications are excellent, but very few employers are willing to employ people who don’t have endless years of experience.

6. Keep Debt at a Minimum

No more debt. If I want 2017 to be prosperous, I can not get myself into debt. My credit card is paid off, the line of credit is zero and my land loan is keeping me busy enough. There’s been lots of debate about good debt and bad debt, but you just have to know what’s best for you in your current situation. I’m not married and I do not have children, so my extra funds can get channelled into something else. When you have a family and responsibilities, borrowing money might be the only way for you to get things done. My advice to you is to choose carefully and weigh the pros and cons and the short and long term impacts.

7. Change my Mindset

Sometimes it can be depressing when I’m sticking to my budget and foregoing things that I want (not need). But I’ve realised that I can still get anything that I want – I just have to be creative. I went out with some friends earlier this year and I set myself a budget for the night. Because I knew that I had a limited budget, I made that menu work in my favour. In 2017 I want to take this way of thinking a step further and affirm that I can do anything that I want with a good plan.

8. Take More Risks

I am a scaredy cat. I avoid all risks like the plague. However, I believe that playing it safe at each and every turn has been detrimental in several ways. My goal for next year is to take more risks, but only after I’ve analysed the situation and confirmed that the worst result is not that bad. I’ve studied project management and I know that risks can derail a project and cause it to fail. But a good project manager knows how to create contingency plans which will mitigate both primary and secondary risks.

9. Create New Routines

I’ve used some personal finance tactics with much success. One of these was the ten percent rule which was used to increase my savings. But as I undertake new ventures in 2017, some of them might not be as useful as they were in the past. For things to change in my favour, I have to change the way I do things. It might mean stepping out of my comfort zone, but it will only be temporary (or permanent, depending on how it works). I’m willing to get out there to make changes that will benefit me and my future family. To get somewhere you’re never been, you have to do something you’re never done.

10. Being Thankful for Everything I Have

I actually started doing this since last year and it really changes one’s perspectives and outlook on life. I’m thankful that I can make money and do the things that I want to do. I’m also thankful that I can see when something is going wrong and make changes to make it right. Being grateful for what I have, makes all of my accomplishments much greater and more appreciated. I do not take anything for granted because I know that it’s very easy to lose everything especially when it seems as though you have everything.

I Don’t Want to be Broke in 2017

I’m using the law of attraction to make 2017 the year that I want it to be. I will not be broke in 2017. I want to attract positive things and experiences including good health, the ability to spend time with my family and just enjoy all that life has to offer. My attention will be focused on all the things that I need and the things that I have to do to obtain them.

Happy Holidays from the team at Odd Cents. Wishing you the best for 2017 as you work to reach your personal finance goals.