Why You Should Complete a Financial Life Audit
Does it ever feel difficult to make a change in your life?
Of course it does, change is hard.
Whether it's picking up a new habit or kicking an old one, it's tough to break our normal routines. We get comfortable with our ways of life and struggle to make a change, even if we know it would benefit us.
Now, think about all of the things in your life that have an impact on your money:
Where you live, the car you drive, the food you eat, the job you have, the person you're married to, the hobbies you participate in... just about everything in life is related to money in some aspect.
That realization is why I believe it's important to complete a life audit and these are a few things I would focus on if I'd never completed a life audit before:
When was the last time you evaluated your career? Are you in a role that brings you happiness, and sufficient pay for the work being done?
We're in the midst of The Great Resignation and more people are taking the time to truly evaluate their career and work/life balance. Throughout the pandemic we've seen work become less of a priority while people have been focused on more important things, like their health - both mental and physical.
There's never been a better time to take a step back, evaluate where you're at and where you want to be, and then pursue whatever career or goals you come up with. Remote work is making it possible to land dream jobs no matter where you live and more companies are placing a priority on employee wellness and fair(er) compensation models.
A lot of personal finance "gurus" always talk about cutting back and spending less, but our careers play a bigger role in our financial lives.
You can only cut out so many expenses before life becomes unenjoyable, so if you find yourself in a position where you feel like you could be earning more or finding more fulfillment in a different role, don't be afraid to jump ship and move on to bigger & better places.
Read: Ramit Sethi's How to Find Your Dream Job
Where you live
Are you currently overextended on your housing? Would downsizing free up more monthly cash flow so you can spend more in other areas that make you happier than making a mortgage/rent payment? Can you afford more housing now that you've lived cheaply for many years?
You're not stuck in your current situation. It may feel that way because you live close to work, or close to your favorite restaurants, but those are conscious decisions you made and luxuries you placed a priority on - but you can reevaluate them.
Nobody's going to judge you because you chose to move from a downtown apartment to a single family home in the suburbs.
On the flip side, if you live in an area that has minimal opportunities but the cost is low, making an investment in yourself and putting yourself in a position to succeed could far outweigh the cost savings.
And where you live may be fine, but remember that you're not stuck there and housing costs are the biggest expense in most budgets, so it's worth evaluating.
The goals you're working towards
It's hard to accomplish things without goals. But a trend I've seen is people reaching a goal only to find out it's not as good as they had originally thought.
For example, if you're working towards FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) because you've seen the posts and blogs about how great the lifestyle can be, what if you got there and found out that you didn't want to "retire early" and you just sacrificed the last 10 years of your life living as cheaply as possible to reach that goal?
That's a reality for a lot of people.
Which is why it's unbelievably important to set goals that you want to achieve, not goals you've seen other people post about that look cool.
Do you enjoy work, but want a 2 month summer vacation every year?
Great, maybe it's worth becoming a teacher, or freelancing - but if you didn't know that you wanted that 2 month vacation, you wouldn't be able to start making adjustments in other areas of your life to make it possible.
✅ Set goals that are contextual to you
Just keep swimming,
Treyton DeVore, Certified Digital Asset Advisor
Financial coach | Writer | Creator