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4/17/2019

How to Achieve Financial Wellness With Four Tips

Can money buy happiness? We’d say yes—but only to a certain extent. 

When acquiring more money becomes a cycle without balance or enjoyment, it doesn’t bring happiness. Neither does the increased stress and anxiety from trying to keep up with the Joneses. However, money is beneficial if it leads to financial wellness, also known as financial well-being.

So what’s financial well-being? It’s “how much your financial situation and money choices provide you with security and freedom of choice,” according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.1 It further defined financial well-being as, “when you:

  • Have control over day-to-day, month-to-month finances
  • Have the capacity to absorb a financial shock
  • Are on track to meet your financial goals
  • Have the financial freedom to make the choices that allow you to enjoy life”

Start attaining financial well-being with these four tips.

  1. Prepare for the unexpected. If you don’t have an emergency savings fund, start by saving three to six months of income. That’s a moderate amount to help you manage an unexpected expense, though specifically how much you should set aside depends on your income, expenses, whether or not you own a home, and other factors. Consider opening a high yield savings account such as CIT Bank’s Savings Builder account. It offers a high interest rate to savers who make at least one monthly deposit of $100 or more or maintain a minimum monthly balance of $25,000.
  2. Free yourself from debt. High credit card or student loan debt is a roadblock to achieving financial well-being. But sacrificing saving to pay off debt could create its own barriers if you have an unexpected expense or emergency. Take things one step at a time. Try paying off the debt with the highest interest rate first, while making minimum payments on other debt. Then repeat the process. Soon you’ll be debt free.
  3. Focus on your goal, not others’ acquisitions. We all know what it’s like to sit on the sidelines watching other people’s accomplishments. Buying a fancy new car. Moving to a bigger house. Spending a month traveling through Asia. If those aren’t your goals, ignore them. Focus on where you’re going in life and what’s important to you, not what everyone else is doing.
  4. Get control of your finances. Gaining control over your saving and spending habits is critical for achieving financial well-being. It starts with the small day-to-day decisions. One day you choose to pack your lunches instead of eating out five times a week. Eventually, you’re successfully managing your money month-to-month and planning for short-term and long-term goals. We know this steady and sensible process isn’t exactly exciting. But it will result in a sense of satisfaction from knowing you don’t have to be a millionaire to have financial well-being — you just need to be financially aware.

Let’s face it: Worrying about money is the dominant contributor to stress. According to a 2018 Northwestern Mutual survey, far more Americans are stressed out by money (44 percent), than personal relationships (25 percent) or work (18 percent). 2

Don’t delay. Focus on your financial well-being and move toward a healthier, less stressful life today. 

At CIT Bank, we’re here to help. Get started on your path to financial well-being by checking out our Savings Builder account. It offers higher-than-average interest rates, plus we’ve got articles and resources to help you manage your money and quickly improve your savings habits.

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