Do you have trouble keeping track of your money? Do you know what your financial philosophy is? Does money control you, or are you the one in control? What's your financial purpose? Do you think money is the "root of all evil," or the solution to every problem? The answers are vital to your ...Do you have trouble keeping track of your money? Do you know what your financial philosophy is? Does money control you, or are you the one in control? What's your financial purpose? Do you think money is the "root of all evil," or the solution to every problem? The answers are vital to your financial health!

You may not know the answers off the top of your head; however experts know that everyone has a Financial Philosophy, whether by design or default. A healthy financial philosophy gives you the confidence to be successful in your approach to money.

Your Financial Philosophy -- is simply the way you think about and use money! Sounds simple, but it completely rules your financial health! Find out how to make a conscious, healthy decision about how you are going to think about and use money. It governs what you determine are your needs, wants, goals, and what path you'll take to get there!

What influences your Financial Philosophy? It's essential you take time to understand the influences shaping the way you think about and use money. Your parents, your upbringing, gender, religion, personal experiences, education and susceptibility to marketing messages are a few of the primary influences shaping the way you think about and view money.

These influences shape your financial philosophy, your philosophy determines your behavior, and your behavior determines your final financial outcome. For example, if you think money is the "root of all evil" you are psychologically sabotaging yourself financially. The positive and healthier view on money is to realize money can be a great force for good in helping others.

Once you find out what has and is influencing your financial philosophy you can begin the important process of replacing financially restraining thinking with positive thinking to match what is most important to you.

Money Thinking Inventory - For starters take some time to honestly answer the following questions to help you realize how you truly think about money. The answers may not always be easy, but if you don't know what's most important to you, who does? You may want to write down your answers to refer back. Ask yourself:

•Do I think more money will solve all my problems?

•What do I truly VALUE? What is really important to me in life?(Money, things, travel, family, friends, etc.)

•What are my GOALS? (Happiness, financial independence, world travel, etc.)

•What are my NEEDS? (Home, food, clothing, utilities, insurance, gas, etc.)

•What are my WANTS? (Travel, designer clothes, expensive home, etc.)

•How much money do I need to get what's important to me, or to live a lifestyle that fulfils my personal definition of happiness?

•What can I do now financially to move in the direction of my goals/dreams?

These types of questions get you thinking about your true priorities. Once you define your priorities in life, it is much easier to decide how to spend and save your money. Also, your priorities should be in alignment with your ultimate goals -- this is "thinking rich."

What's Important? It is very useful to actually take a few moments and create a list. Your list should have 3 columns. In one column, write down your needs -- things that you definitely must have. In another column, write your wants -- basic comforts that you want, but could do without. And the last column is for those things that would be just wonderful to have -- your wants or dreams.

What are Your Priorities? Then take your list and number each item in order of their importance. Include all of the needs, wants, and dreams on your list. Obviously the needs will come first, but there may be some dreams that are more important to you than some "wants" on your list. Now that you can see your needs, wants, and dreams in this way, you can make wise decisions about saving and spending your money.

If you're married, you'll both want to make your own list. Then talk with each other about them. Together come up with a financial philosophy for your family so you're both working in the same direction. Money issues are one of the most common causes of divorce. For more on how to deal successfully with money in your marriage, see Money and Marriage.

Most Important - When you really focus on what's important to you and your family, you'll be surprised to find that many of your dreams have little or nothing to do with money. For example, let's say meaningful relationships or being a great parent are important to you. You can have and do both of these whether you are ultra-rich, poor, or middle-class. Money doesn't really count, except at the most basic level.

Your Goals - Once you define what is most important to you and then established a financial goal based on what's most important to you, the next step is to align your daily money behavior to that goal.

When you create your own financial philosophy, you're building the foundation for a long-term, specific financial plan. So be very careful and realistic when considering your dreams and goals. Your "money thinking" can make your break you!

How much is enough? Do you really need a motorcycle, a sports car, a boat, and an SUV? Do you really need a vacation to Europe every three months? Statistics show that most people continuously wear 20% of the clothing in their closets, and the other 80% just sits there. How much is enough?

Be patient with yourself, and use the list you created here to begin your own financial philosophy. Once you are honest with yourself regarding the way you view money and its importance in your life, you'll be making good progress towards a better healthier financial future by thinking rich!

Author's Bio: 

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