A lot of mainstream advice makes good money management seem like a part-time job: track your spending in a fancy colour-coded spreadsheet, collect receipts, monitor financial markets, go bargain hunting, meal prep, batch cook, buy second-hand, sell second-hand…

No wonder why some look at advice like that and just want to bury their heads in avoidance.

The truth is that it doesn’t have to be that laborious or time-intensive. You can set up simple, time-effective systems that do the heavy lifting for you with minimal fuss.

Once you do, you save money on autopilot. Your investments automatically grow over time without you worrying about the market’s ups and downs. Your bills all get paid on time. You know how much money is going where and how much you have left without tracking every 20c.

You can manage everything in about an hour a week, and then you’re done. You move on with your life and spend your time on things that actually bring you joy.

2. Think of it as a necessity instead of a hobby. The mistake many people make is thinking that finance is an area of personal interest that some people are “into” while others just aren’t. Like baking, sport, or opera.

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I’d argue there’s a key difference, though. Your survival is not dependent on baking, sport or opera. However, like it or not, money is a survival need.

We live in a world where caring about money isn’t really optional. So, I’ve found that thinking you don’t care about money is often a form of ignorance or avoidance.

You can notice this in the incongruence between what people say and what they do. Maybe you think you’re living a carefree life by not caring about your finances, but also you live in constant anxiety that you’ll run out of money. Perhaps you think people who want to accumulate lots of money are selfish or greedy, but also you’d like to get paid more to live more comfortably.

In our current society, you have to care about money on some level, whether you like it or not.

Accepting this can be quite liberating. Instead of spending energy resisting, avoiding, or running from it, you can choose to simply see it as one of life’s necessities.

Like taking out the trash, brushing your teeth, doing the dishes – and a whole host of other activities that you’re not particularly passionate about, but you do nonetheless. Why? Simply because doing them makes your life better and easier.

So next time you find yourself avoiding your finances, just remember – the other side of good money management is a life with more money to do the things you love and less stress while you do them. Surely, that’s an outcome worth being interested in.

Paridhi Jain is the founder of SkilledSmart, which helps adults learn to manage, save and invest their money through financial education courses and classes.

  • Advice given in this article is general in nature and is not intended to influence readers’ decisions about investing or financial products. They should always seek their own professional advice that takes into account their own personal circumstances before making any financial decisions.

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