When it comes to finding motivation, brainstorming new ways to approach challenges, or literally any type of struggle with your money — it’s impossible to know where to begin. I say this because I have been searching for the answers for four years now, and I’ve learned that there are no solutions on the Internet because no one has the exact same financial problems or goals as I do. Generally speaking, though? Sure. I mean, a ton of people are saving a down payment, and a ton of people are saving money for their kid’s future college education. However, I can’t seem to find any articles that say:
“Hey Alyssa, this article will tell you exactly what you need to do step by step to save the exact amount of money you’ll need for your house price and also how much it’ll cost you to do all of that in your city and neighborhood of choice on your income.”
Weird, huh? Usually, there isn’t anything I can’t find online.
For anyone who is feeling the same way I do when it comes to seeking advice that is specific to their personal goals and financial lifestyles, here are forty prompts that might spark a unique way of looking at things.
40 Financial Prompts Fit For You — And Only You
Prompts to help you understand how money affects you emotionally:
- It’s easy to spend money — which is why I…
- Many people are trying to “Keep Up With The Joneses” — and I’m trying to keep up with…
- I feel the richest in my life when…
- When I look at my bank account I feel…
- Money brings me joy because…
Prompts to help you take one small step in a different direction with your finances:
- Today I will review my budget/spending/debts
- In 10 years time I want to be able to afford…
- I will calculate how much money I make per day and decide a reasonable amount I can save from that total
- One bad spending habit I can try to eliminate today is…
- I will open a high-interest savings account today to start planning for this money goal…
Prompts for anyone who is seeking more income:
- If I lost my job tomorrow, I would do _______ to make income while seeking new employment
- Have I asked for a raise since starting this job or in the past 12 months?
- I will write a list of all my hobbies and star any that could earn me a side income
- How much more income will make me happy?
- Do I need more income out of necessity or out of desire?
Prompts for the person who is learning what they value:
- Today I will research past spending and find the top three categories of spend aside from my needs
- Today I will go through my belongings and declutter anything that no longer “sparks joy”
- Of all of my belongings, I take most care of…
- To me, self-care means…
- If money did not exist, I would spend my days…
Prompts for the person who wants to learn more about investing:
- I am willing to invest $____ of my current savings
- Although I don’t know where to start, I will learn about investing by…
- I don’t know where I’ll be in the future, but I want to save so that I can…
- Why am I afraid of investing? Can I debunk these fears?
- Today I will open a practice investing account and see what I learn
Prompts for the person who is ready to tackle their debt:
- I will write down all of the debts that I owe on one piece of paper
- The debt that weighs on my mental well-being the most is…
- By the end of this year, I hope to pay off $________ of my debt
- If I feel hopeless, I will be brave enough to reach out for help from…
- What are three actionable things I can do today to start to control my debts?
Prompts for the person who needs an emergency fund:
- Without an emergency fund, how will I continue to pay off my bills in case of job loss, illness, injury, etc.?
- It costs me $_______________ to live each month
- How many months of savings would make me feel comfortable in my financial life?
- What in my life would I consider an emergency?
- The place that makes the most sense for me to keep my emergency fund is in my bank account where I can see it/in a different place that I cannot easily access
Prompts for the person who hopes to renew their relationship with money:
- I would like to feel _________ about money
- The dominant emotions that come to the surface when I think about money are…
- I will write one positive money thing in my journal each day
- What is the difference between my first money memory and my most recent financial transaction?
- I will create a positive affirmation for me and my money
Sometimes with money, the answer isn’t in a budget, spending detox or frozen credit card. Sometimes it has a lot more to do with our personal feelings, personal goals and how we’ve dealt with financial struggle in years past. You do not have the same income as the person telling you how to save — and that’s what sometimes makes it hard to understand why something that seems so simple to others can seem so overwhelming to you.
Start small with your money. Every teeny tiny accomplishment is going to impact how you approach your financial future (in the best way possible).
What prompt are you most excited to test drive this week? Let me know in the comments!
Alyssa Fischer claims she’s not an expert on personal finance — which is why it’s easy for her to explain financial topics without getting too intense. You can find her on her blog, Mixed Up Money, where she proves money isn’t boring (and that it’s also a little funny). You can also spend all day ranting with her about your finances on Twitter.
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