Plug the Holes in Your Finances

The fastest way to financial freedom is to spend less than you earn

In the start-up phase of any small business, keeping things simple and costs to a minimum are key to success. Gearing up to transition from your job can be a challenging part of the process. Once you have made the audacious decision to change your work life and veer from the status quo, a number of factors will present themselves to be solved. Presumably, the existing work situation is one that is no longer satisfying your needs, so hopefully you will have already decided on your new trade.

Amid the business planning there will be decisions on a legal structure. Sole trader, limited company or social enterprise and the due diligence into what best suits your trade. Your vision, your mission and you objectives as a freelancer operating as a sole trader or company director running a social enterprise. Creating packages for your service or products for your line, test sales and then letting the world know you are in business.

In your personal life, this career leap may affect your family. Your partner will have to adjust to the new path of your career, things may change for your children and you may have to field criticism or judgments from parents or siblings. It can be unsettling for them too if you are perceived to be leaving a ‘perfectly good job’ to pursue some crazy idea. Often times this version of reality is coming from fear or regret and you shouldn’t allow any of this to get in your way. Frankly, it’s not your stuff.

Old habits are strong and jealous. ~Dorothea Brande

How will you price your products or service and what will you base them off? Deciding on a budget and putting together a survival budget to make projections on how you will fund the first phase or year in business. This is the make or break time, either you jump or you remain in the familiar frustration of what you don’t want or have outgrown. Consequently, the money becomes the last piece of the puzzle and at the same time the biggest obstacle. But it does not have to be. Money is a circumstance like any other and you will have overcome many circumstances in your life already. Why would you let this one stand in your way to the freedom, creativity or other unique reasons that you seek in your work life?

There are ways and means to prepare to exit the job market you desperately want to escape and when it comes to finances, saving enough to survive for the first six months is good preparation feature number one. Additionally, finding ways to plug the holes where money goes down the drain is something you can start now.

A simple fact that is hard to learn is that the time to save money is when you have some. ~Joe Moore

Plugs that look like:

1. Call you gas and/ or electricity provider to request a final bill. You are moving to a cheaper company which you found on a price comparison website.

2. Do you seriously watch all the programmes on all the channels on your satellite TV bundle, all of the time? Get the basic package and get your time and your mind back.

3. Call your mobile phone company and ask them to reduce your bill. If they say there is no record of default on your account, miss a payment and then call them back. They will be obliged to offer a solution to your hardship.

4. Cancel your mobile phone insurance. But first check that your phone is covered on your home insurance policy.

5. Saving for you new work life doesn’t mean you are starved of your favourite leisure activities. If you have a theatre in your area find out about the postcode discount and sign up.

6. For theatres that are not in your area ask what day you can pay what you can. Most if not all repertory theatres will oblige.

7. West End theatre is not strictly out of bounds either. Call the box office and ask about papering, standing or reduced view seats.

8. Join your local library and borrow books instead of buying them all from Amazon or Waterstones.

9. Meal prep 1: bake a pie, boil up a large pot of soup or prepare a dozen salad jars that will last you the week.

10. Meal prep 2: carry a pack lunch to work at least 80% of the week. That’s a saving of around £7 per day and it will probably be a lot healthier.

11. Meal prep 3: invest in a keep cup and swish past your local coffee house with you home made latte, in the knowledge that you are saving £20 plus per week.

12. Make your own hair and skin care moisturisers using coconut oil and essential oils. Send me an email if you need a recipe:

13. If you’re adventurous and like vintage, pop into your local charity shop (or thrift store) for bargain winter coats, statement tees and accessories aplenty.

14. Quit fast fashion! Bypass H&M, Gap, Zara and similar high street stores for what’s ‘on trend.’ Stick to classic styles, good quality basics and well made shoes.

15. Cancel that gym membership, you never use it anyway.

I need your help, because there’s more to add to this list. Leave your suggestions in the comments below. Thank you!

If we command our wealth, we shall be rich and free. If our wealth commands us, we are poor indeed. ~ Edmund Burke


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