Manage your Finances: Just Track, Pay, Save and Insure

How I learnt to manage my finances

Benjamin Franklin said, “A penny saved is a penny earned.”

I agree. Though it is said that money can’t buy happiness, you can’t deny it still unlocks the doors to a decent life. It can be that solid helping hand when you are in dire straits. Thus, you really don’t need to be told how important that statement is, do you?

Once as a little girl I had ended up saving Rs. 1500. Obviously there was so much I wanted to do with it. But dad persuaded me to deposit that entire amount in the bank. Essentially he convinced me to save so that I could use the money when actually in need. He was there to give me all that I wanted anyway so there was really no point spending it, was there? I found reason in his argument. That was how my first savings took shape.

A few years later when I was awarded cash for scoring well in high school that too found its way to the bank. That’s how, slowly yet steadily, the habit of saving was inculcated in me. That’s not to say I never wasted money as a teenager, I did. But by then I had also gained a reasonable understanding of the value of hard earned money.

In fact, even during my stint in Australia, dad convinced me to create a fixed deposit for my savings there. In his own traditional way he taught me how savings today become the safety net for tomorrow. And of course, it worked well with the ideology of neither a lender nor a borrower, of which we were and still are staunch believers. I started out my journey as a financially independent woman with this as my mantra, and I’m happy to say 7 years down the line I’ve stuck to it.

From the moment I held my very first pay cheque I realized earning money is just one part of the process. What we do with it later is a completely different ball game altogether. While I had my dad as a role model on the HOW-TOs about finances, it took me some time to get the hang of it all. Even today, I know I have a lot to learn but that’s a story for another day.

Today, I want to talk about what I believe works for me, about how I manage this rather complicated aspect of life fairly easily. It’s so simple that it actually can be summed up in just four words – track, pay, save and insure.

  • Tracking: Maintaining a list of my monthly expenses helps me keep track of my money.
  • Paying Bills on Time: The most effective way of managing the inflow and outflow of cash is to pay your dues on time. If possible, at the beginning of every month. I do the same. I never wait till the due date to make payments. That not only saves me headaches but also helps me keep my finances in check.
  • Savings: I cannot stress enough the importance of this, however small. One of the first things I do religiously after a salary credit is transfer whatever chunk possible to a savings bank account.
  • Insurance: A part of what I earn goes into insurance premiums. This has helped me on my rainy days more than once.

I’m fairly old-school when it comes to managing finances. Hence, I don’t believe in taking too many risks. But even with that I have been able to build a safety net. You can too. All it takes is a little bit of conviction. And if you need help to manage your finances, there are apps for that too. Money View, for example, is one that is great for managing personal finance.

So, what are you waiting for?

Remember — track, pay, save and insure!

A Blogger and Social Influencer, Nabanita works as a Software Engineer for a living. In reality though she lives through her writings. You can find her musings at Random Thoughts — Naba.