20 Basic Rules for Financial Success That Everyone Should Know

Want to achieve financial success?

Being financially successful is a goal for many, yet achieved by few. However, planning for and ultimately achieving financial success is not a simple feat for many.

There are many things you need to do to be truly financially successful. Therefore, I have created what I think are the twenty most basic rules for anyone who is looking for financial success (which should be everyone).

Achieving and maintaining financial success can be difficult. There is no one-size-fits-all approach that will work for everyone. Instead, you need to take the time to figure out what works best for you individually. Do you want to know how to be financially successful? These basic rules will be the most effective way to start. 

20 Basic Rules To Achieve Financial Success

Have a Budget and Stick To It

The absolute first thing you have to do when taking control of your finances is to make a budget. That’s right- a BUDGET. You need a personal budget. You need one written down. Not only that- but it needs to be a budget that WORKS. A budget only deals with the money you have and not the money you think you have or the money you wish to have.

Have a Good Savings Plan

Some people don’t fully understand money’s importance to a good life. Perhaps they are young and have never experienced living without money; maybe they have lived a life of privilege, but I can tell you: while money is not the goal of life, it’s tough to reach your goals without money. 

I am not trying to extol the virtues of money or encourage you to think that everything is about money or that money is the end game. It’s not. Plenty of very wealthy people are extremely unhappy and lead terrible lives. Money cannot buy everything. 

To have money, you need to save money. Therefore, you need to have a savings plan in place. A savings plan means that every single paycheck, you put money aside for savings. Putting money aside should be a number one priority to achieve financial success.

The first thing you need to do is have an emergency savings fund. Start with building an emergency fund and then move on to a retirement savings plan. If your work offers a retirement savings match, make sure to take full advantage!

If you have trouble saving money, join the $1,000 Savings challenge now!

Make Extra Money

To be financially successful, you need to make money. There is no way around it. If you aren’t making enough money, you need to make more. You can do this by leveraging your current job (if you have one) and working on getting a raise, switching to another company that will pay you more, or leveling up your skills to be more qualified and move up the corporate ladder.

You can also start a side hustle or do small jobs and hustles to make extra cash on the side. Then, take all this extra money, whether $5 extra or $300 at a time and put it towards your debt repayment or savings. Doing this will put you straight on the path to financial success.

Spend Mindfully

Mindful spending is spending money on what you need and what brings you joy and acknowledging that. Mindful spending means taking the time to appreciate where your money is going and what your money is doing for you. Mindful spending allows you to have joy and contentment when spending money wisely.

Mindfulness is one of the best things you can incorporate into your life. This maxim is true with your finances as well. You will be able to control your emotions and make better decisions regarding spending money.

Give Charity

Charitable giving is not just rich people giving away money. Even if you are not well-off or wealthy, you still give money to those who need it. I think giving to charity is one of the most important things you can do with your money. We should be as proud of our giving rate as we are proud of our savings rate!

Money is a tool to better your life and the lives of the people around you. That means that you have a moral obligation to help people who are less fortunate than you. This obligation involves giving as much charity as you can.

Educate Yourself

Personal finance includes managing a person’s finances; typically, it is about planning your budget and ensuring that you can make payments. It can range from maintaining a balance in your checking account to planning for retirement.

Unfortunately, you don’t necessarily learn these things from school or your parents. If you didn’t, you need to EDUCATE YOURSELF about personal finance. You must know about budgeting, savings, investing, and potential pitfalls. You cannot achieve financial success without knowing. You can read blogs about personal finance or books about budgeting and personal finance to help you get started.

Live a Healthy Life

Not everything is within your control, but living a healthy life will help you achieve financial success. Healthy living segues beautifully into financial success. Eat healthy foods, exercise often, drink water, and avoid unhealthy behaviors- these tenets will help you lead a healthy (and better life) and help you pursue financial success.

Take Care of Yourself

There is no point in financial success if you are not in a place to enjoy it. If you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of your money and do good things in the world. So, fill your cup up in a healthy way and engage in positive self-care. Being at peace with yourself will help you make positive choices in life and with your money. Get yourself the help you need to help you be successful. If you don’t take care of yourself, then who will?

Live Frugally

There is an inherent value in doing with less, regardless of the amount of money you have. Even if you have a lot, there is value in doing with less, eschewing materialism, reducing your waste as much as possible, and leaving the smallest physical footprint in this world.

There is something good about living a frugal life. Frugal living can be rewarding in many ways. There is something about doing with less, about having less materialism in your life.

Get Advice

Besides educating ourselves, we all need to admit that sometimes, we can’t make the best decisions for ourselves objectively. So get advice when you need it. If you have people in your life who can help with this, then by all means- ask and take their advice! Sometimes, just talking something out with someone knowledgeable in the area can help you clarify your decision-making. If you don’t have someone to do this for you, hire someone to help you. You don’t have to do this alone!

Start Now

You need to start taking control of your finances and savings NOW. The earlier you start, the better off you are. That’s right- today. You NEED to start saving money and taking care of your finances today.

You need to start saving money now, no matter how old you are- a teenager, a college student, or a young newlywed. If you are older and feel like you have missed the boat- you haven’t. Start taking control today. Don’t push it off until tomorrow.

Educate Others

Educating others is a good thing to do. If you have kids, you have a responsibility to teach them about money and finances.

But did you know that teaching others will benefit you as well? When you teach other people, then you are teaching yourself as well. Explaining ideas and concepts to others and engaging in the natural back and forth will help you gain even more clarity.

Your kids will question you, and you will need to answer them- a perfect way to refine your thinking! It will also keep you on your toes! Teaching others makes it harder to slip yourself- it is a built-in accountability system!

Enjoy the Basics

Learning how to enjoy the basics in life will get you far in life. You will save yourself money and be a much happier person. Learn to enjoy the simple things in life. Learn to enjoy easy and simple pleasures and activities.

Allow yourself to fall in love with nature and appreciate the simplicity of a simple life. We have all had to deal with a stripped-down life recently- I, for one, plan to embrace that and enjoy the simpler life.

Teach and Train Yourself To Do With Less

Try living with less. Easier said than done, am I right? There are so many luxuries in the world- so many things we can buy, and we can have. Teaching yourself to be satisfied with what you have and making do with less is a healthy way to live.

Needing fewer things will make you happier in the long run. Try to embrace cheap hobbies, frugal activities, and lifestyles- actively work to live with fewer things and needless.

Plan for the Future

I think most people have been in a situation where they need money desperately. Life happens. Life is unpredictable. Things can get crazy. The secure job you thought you had can be gone in a blink of an eye.

That’s why you need savings. The no-risk investment or side hustle can be gone as well. Some people think that they can just cut expenses drastically if required. However, this is neither practical nor easily doable. You need an emergency fund. 

Additionally, you may find yourself in a situation where cutting expenses is less than ideal. (Global pandemic, anyone?). While cutting costs is an excellent idea when you can, you need to have a really good savings account. Using a credit card can be great if you need to, but credit card debt can quickly spiral out of control if you are not careful. Putting money away in the bank means having cash when you need it.

Keep On Going (Even if It Is Not Much)

One step forward and ten steps back- sometimes it feels like taking control of your finances and achieving financial success will never happen. Every win is negated by another failure. Life works like that. Keep it going, even if it is not a lot.

Every step you take towards financial success is a step more than if you would have done nothing at all. $5 saved is $5 more than $0. Every penny and EVERY DIME SAVED means something. Did you get knocked back? Keep on moving forward, step by step, and dime by dime.

Practice Gratitude

We must be grateful. We must practice being thankful for those things we were blessed with. Happiness should not be taken for granted. Relationships should not be taken for granted. Time should not be taken for granted. Health should not be taken for granted. Financial success should not be taken for granted.

If we are lucky enough to be given those things or blessed with the knowledge that we have to work hard to make those things happen, we need to realize how incredibly privileged we are. We have something that no money can buy. We are the lucky ones.

If you have money, you should spread the wealth- remember you don’t need more to be happy- do your best to share it with others. Giving and sharing make you a better person, and that is something that no money can buy.

Use Extra Money Smartly

When you get extra money, whether it’s from a raise, a stimulus, or working additional jobs- use it smartly. Those bonus amounts go a long way to achieving financial success. Large amounts of money move the needle on your goals and milestones more quickly.

As much as I believe every dime counts (and I do), a million dimes count even more. Use these large amounts smartly.

Celebrate Success

You should celebrate every single step of the journey. Every tiny moment of self-control and success should be recognized and hailed as the victory that it is. You don’t need to have a huge party to celebrate something- acknowledge that you have achieved something tremendous and mark the moment with a ritual or share the victory with others.

No matter how you choose to celebrate, make sure that you are working hard to achieve financial success- you should celebrate that!

Invest and Save for Generations

Hopefully, one day, we will grow old and then die. Leaving a legacy for generations should be a goal of every successful financial plan. Even if you don’t have children, you can leave a meaningful legacy in many ways—plan for your money to grow and help others.

Let your financial success be the catalyst for others’ financial success as well. Make sure that your financial plan includes planning for the future- even after you are gone.

Financial Success

To be financially successful, everyone must learn how to manage their money wisely. Financial success is hard to achieve. If you follow these twenty basic rules for financial success, you will not be disappointed!

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Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.

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