BLOG – P is for Priorities. What are yours? (2 minute read)

The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.

Our priorities are the areas of our lives that are important to us. They’re the things we deal with first. The practices that we put genuine effort and time into.

I’ve got four priorities and one of them is financial security – or in my words, having money in the bank.

I’ve learnt that in order to say yes to our priorities we have to be willing to say no to something else. For example, to save money without dramatically changing my life, I’ve said ‘YES’ to a purchase ledger book and 11 bank account and ‘NO’ to online budgeting apps.

My parents, and grandparents, were all small business owners. They didn’t get paid every week, or month, by the ‘boss’. They were the ‘boss’ and personally responsible and accountable for managing their own income, expenses and cash flow. My mum and dad used a purchase ledger book for the household accounts. They’d sit together at the kitchen table and write cheques to pay the bills. They both knew what money was coming in and exactly how much was going out. They still do – although now they reconcille their ledger with their online bank statements. I’m truly grateful that my parents taught me the importance of managing, monitoring and saving money.

One of the first things I did in my year of no buying was to identify my priorities. In 2014 I set myself a goal to save one quarter (25 per cent) of my annual salary and to save money for one big experience – a 7 day horse riding holiday. I exceeded my goal by saving 38% of my salary. Sadly the horse riding holiday was not so successful. Two participants ended up in hospital on the very first day. Thankfully they are both ok now. I’m still waiting for my refund – the horse holiday company didn’t have any insurance… yep, there’s a priorities story right there!

What are your priorities?

Sarah in Melbourne did one of the Underspent programs last year and sent me this as feedback. “Step 1 was a game-changer for me and my husband. We now know that education and paying off the mortgage are our priorities. As a result of these activities we have decided not to buy a new car but to get a second hand one. Because for us having money in the bank and paying off the mortgage is more of a priority than owning a new car.”

Discover your priorities by answering the 4 questions/statements below or download the PDF Priorities Workbook from my website ‪‬ Instant access. No email address required.
1. My priorities are:
2. My financial priorities are:
3. I have these priorities because:
4. The reasons for my priorities are:

Underspent Step 1 is about identifying and focusing on your passions and priorities. It’s about spending money on your passions (the things you love and enjoy the most) and saving money for your priorities (the things that are most important to you) instead of impulse shopping and buying just for the sake of buying.

BUY the Underspent book. Available in e-book, iBook & kindle formats ($2.99) or paperback ($12.95) here ‪‬

Until next week…