For most people a cluttered work space makes for a cluttered mind.
I am fortunate enough to have a home office. The past few days I have had the opportunity to get organized. This is what I did and a few tips for you.
I went through all of my papers and expenses. I looked at each item individually. If I didn't know or was unclear about something I called the company. I made sure I knew when the next payment is due, how much and the total balance owing. I threw out anything I didn't need.
-Notebook for Personal Finances:
I have a notebook I keep handy so any time I call or talk to someone I take notes. I write the day, date, time, the individual I spoke with and the conversation. -Don't write things down on random pieces of paper that you will loose. Have one notebook for your personal finances and keep it close to the expense file or on your desk, that way it is handy should you need to use or refer to it.
-Check Roster and Bank Statements:
I find that by keeping a current check roster it helps me know where I am at and eliminates unnecessary worry. By doing this I notice all transactions should I have forgotten to cancel, and unwanted subscriptions, sometimes there are crazy debits that I am able to stop immediately. I also print out my monthly bank statements and file in my filing cabinet.
-Follow up on all expenses:
Because of COVID-19 I was able to ask for an extension on two of my loans. It is so important to call and let them know your situation should you not be able to make a payment. By not calling it causes unnecessary stress and ends up hurting you in along run. Right now so many people are not working this isn't uncommon, by dealing with it immediately it will help you with undo stress. I was very surprised at the positive results I received by calling!
-Set up a simple filing system:
I have one manila file for all incoming expenses. I also set up a simple filing system using Manila file folders. (Rent, Utilities, Auto, Cable, etc). I have a two drawer filing cabinet which I keep in my closet with hanging file folders. This helps should I need a document, refer to a paid bill or bank statement, it is easily accessible and I don't have to freak out.
Spend no less than one hour a week on personal finances.
Update your check roster, I do this using my phone, (I access the bank app on my phone and I write down the previous weeks transactions in my check roster), pay bills, look at upcoming week. By doing this you don't need to worry about it the rest of the week. Do it and just get it done!
My thoughts: Most of us were not taught personal finance so it is something we worry about constantly. Not knowing where you are at, is scary. If you are disciplined and consistent, it will pay off, don't give up! There are some things in life no one can for you, you need to do it yourself. It is up to you to be responsible and diligent for yourself. I assure you, if you do your best in this area you will feel much better and worry less. I hope some of these tips helped you.
Create a simple, organized work space that helps you think clearly.
It doesn't need to be a room, it could be a shelf, a table, any where, - just make it as nice, tidy and pleasant as possible.