4 Tips to Eliminate Stress-Related Debt

Debt-stress-File-6021396-300x205When one is heavily in debt or have over-extended oneself, this can certainly cause a large amount of stress and affect every area of your life. Debt can be accumulated through credit cards, student loans, business loans, car loans, mortgages first or second, or small to large ticket items and at times this can be simply what some call everyday living. Clearly a lot can happen over the years and debt can build up. It can become very frustrating and create pressure on personal relationships, career, family, health and can lead to illness.

Here are 4 tips that may help provide you with some relief of the debt-related stress:

1. Focus on the big picture – you can become overwhelmed and frustrated while paying off debt which causes you to lose focus of the big picture. Remember your debt is only temporary if you stay focused. Allow yourself to focus on your emergency funds and retirement, imagine the extra money you will have once your debt is gone – in other words don’t lose the focus on the big picture.

2. Remember the why – the why is the big reason for striving to be debt free. Everyone has personal goals, focus on what those goals are and remember the why.

3. Make room for rewards – you cannot stop living just because you have debt. Celebrate those big wins with small rewards, set up a system based on your goals and then treat yourself when you accomplish them, so if you have a goal for paying off $1,000 in debt in 6 months and you pay it off in 3 give yourself an extra treat. Just make sure your goals are realistic.

4. Pay off debt like it’s a game – if you think of it as a game (and maybe include some of your like-minded friends and family) you can see who reaches the finish line first. Getting out of debt is more about your attitude than your finances, be a debt-fighting warrior and you will win the game.

When you start to utilize these tips you will feel a little less stressed and less frustrated, and perhaps a little more excited when you see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Want to read all of the blogs from this past week? You can read them all in full here.

Do you need some stress relief, debt counseling, or a better financial plan? If so contact me today and let me help.

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

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10 Tips to Eating Healthy on a Budget

Grocery-shopping-on-a-budgetAre you always trying to find a way to eat healthy on a budget? Do you need to learn how to stretch your food dollars each week? There are always things that can be done when working with a food budget it’s just about knowing how to get to the end result of savings each and every time you shop. There are, of course, 3 main steps to help you get there each time: plan, appropriate prices and meal preparation such as preparing once and eating three times. Prepare your list ahead of time you shop and try not to deviate from it.

Here are 10 tips to keep you eating healthy even on a budget:

1. Plan, plan, plan! – before you head to the grocery store and/or health food store plan your meals for the week. Include meals like stews, casseroles, or stir-fries to help stretch the expensive items into more portions. Check to see what foods you already have and make a list to buy the ones you need.

2. Get the best price – check your local newspapers, online and at the store for sales and coupons. Ask about a loyalty or reward card for extra savings at the stores you shop in. Look for specials or sales on items that you have listed.

3. Compare and contrast – locate the unit price on the shelf directly below the product and use it to compare different brands and different sizes of the same brand to determine which one is more economical.

4. Buy in bulk – it is almost always cheaper to buy foods in bulk. Smart choices are family packs of items that can be frozen and used at a later date. Remember to make sure you have the freezer space for bulk frozen foods.

5. Buy in season – buying fruits and vegetables in season can lower the cost and adds the freshness. If you aren’t going to use them right away, buy some that still need time to ripen.

6. Convenience costs… go back to the basics – convenience foods like frozen dinners, pre-cut vegetables, instant rice, instant oatmeal, or grits will cost you more than if you make it from scratch and should not be on your list. Always select fresh! Schedule the time to prepare your own foods and save money.

7. Easy on your wallet – certain foods are typically low-cost options all year round. Try beans which are less expensive and provide lots of protein, carrots, greens or sweet potatoes and fruit such as apples or bananas are also good to select.

8. Cook once and eat all week – prepare a large batch of favorite recipes on your day off. Freeze in individual containers. Use them throughout the week and you will not have to spend money on take-out meals.

9. Get your creative juices flowing – spice up your leftovers by using them in new ways. Try leftover vegetable stir-fry, quinoa with vegetables such as mushrooms or your can top your garden salads with colorful raw vegetables. Remember throwing away food is throwing away money.

10. Eating out – restaurants are expensive so if you must go save money by getting the early bird special or going out for lunch instead of dinner or look for “2 for 1” deals. Stick to water instead of ordering other beverages which will add to the bill.

Are you looking for help in finding the right lifestyle design for you? If so, contact me today I can help!

Visit my website to learn more about nutrition here. Read more of my articles here at my blog.

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

6 Fantastic Ways to Incorporate Self-Care This Holiday Season

Self-Love-and-Self-CareThe holiday season is always a time to give to others and as women we do that ten-fold but this season make sure that you incorporate self-care as well. There are 6 ways to incorporate self-care and in the process benefit those that are special to you.

Here are 6 fantastic ways to give back to you:

1. The gift of wealth – and I’m not talking about spending a ton of money, I’m talking about checking in on your investment portfolio. Start the year off right by making sure everything is where it should be in your investments and check your taxes, credits, deductions, and fees.

2. The gift of retirement – If you don’t have a retirement plan set up then you need to get that done, make sure you pay yourself first before paying others. You may not realize it now but when you get closer to the age of retirement and realize that you have not socked away any nest egg you will be working forever instead of being able to retire at an age still young enough to enjoy life. Don’t put it off any longer.

3. The gift of health – if you use FSA (flexible spending account) you will want to make sure that you have your flexible spending set up and have your predetermined amount to be deducted from each paycheck. Although this year you will be able to now carry over up to a $500 balance into next year.

4. The gift of time – let technology work for you this year so that you are able to take more free time. Set up automated payments, statements, retirement contributions and financial decisions. This will save time and you’re able to access it immediately!

5. The gift of protection – Protect yourself by making sure you have renters or home owner’s insurance to protect your assets. Get separate policies for jewelry since most basic plans do not cover them. Also make sure to have life insurance so that you can also protect your loved ones.

6. The gift of clarity – create your vision for next year. Plan your goals, accomplishments, and decide what you desire differently and more importantly what areas of your life you would like to change. Make the next year an ideal year for you. Focus on the why behind the changes you make to keep you motivated to maximize your results.

By giving yourself these 6 precious gifts you will not only protect yourself but you will also protect all of your loved ones. In creating an ideal year for yourself, you will create a new vision for those you love – make sure to give yourself and those around you the gift of time – spend as much time, with those you love and care for. Enjoy your holiday!

Want to read more past blogs? You can here.

Do you need help with your financial plan for the New Year? Are you interested in creating your desired lifestyle? If you need help contact me today!

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

6 Ways to Deal with the Stress of Holiday Shopping, and Hiding the Truth about Spending

holiday spendingResearch has shown that 40% of all couples have some kind of disagreements about how much is being spent in the holiday season and 1 in 4 couples confessed to lying to their partner about spending and shopping habits during the holiday season. The majority of these couples will actually pay cash to hide the larger purchases and 10% of couples has had at least one partner take out a credit card in just their own name to hide the spending.

Are they talking about you in this research? Do you overspend, hide shopping sprees and hide your spending habits during the holiday season?

Here are 6 ways to help you deal with the stress of holiday shopping and hiding the truth about spending season:

1. Have money huddles with your partner – this should be done on a monthly basis, if you have not started this then the holidays are a great time to begin a new tradition. It will help you to focus on where the money is being spent and pinpoint where there is room for adjustments.

2. Create a plan of attack when it comes to gift giving – make sure you are not buying gifts for the same person. Decide on a dollar amount for gifts, designate who will do the shopping and how, resist temptation to do what’s easiest and agree that if you come within or under your budget you will celebrate by doing something for just the two of you. Shop early!

3. DIY – this can be fun and creative and of course not a lot of spending has to be done.

4. Draw names – pool names of the entire family (brothers, sister, spouses and children) into a hat or pot and have each person draw a name that is the only person you buy for and make sure to set a price amount.

5. Be sure to put spending caps on any gift exchanges – resist temptation to go over the price limit set. Make sure to set price limits for family, friends, and company gift exchanges.

6. Celebrate another time – if you have to travel during the holiday that can become extremely costly, especially if you are buying presents. Instead schedule time to travel either before or after the holidays so that you can save on airfare and hotels.

From a financial standpoint the holidays can be the most stressful time of the year but if you follow these 6 different tips then you should be able to breathe easier this time of year.

Want to read more blogs? You can read all of my full length blogs here.

Do you need help with creating a financial plan? Do you need some stress relief? If so contact me today!

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

7 Ways to Secure Your Finances

spend lessHow much do you spend out of your paycheck? How much do you save out of your paycheck? Doesn’t it seem like it should be an easy task? Of course, what we don’t realize is that there will be a day when something goes wrong and we will have to use that entire savings to fix a car, repair the roof, or in some instances live on while looking for a new job. If it was easy to be successful with money everyone would be debt free. Now is the time to start not only saving but becoming more financially stable and successful.

Here are 7 ways that will help you create a more financial stability for the long haul:

1. Set goals – Create realistic, positive and actionable goals that will help to provide a purpose, focus or a direction towards what you want or desire. Don’t concentrate on the negative. Monitor your progress and reward yourself for your accomplishments.

2. Live frugally – Live within your means and find happiness doing it. People who spend lavishly trying to look wealthy may not be financially stable. If you want to have financial success you need to be able to live well with less.

3. Align priorities with spending – Focus on your own personal journey by avoiding the influence of others and how they spend their money. Create a budget that will help you to align your spending with your priorities – cut back if necessary on those things that are not needed at that time.

4. Keep a budget and track spending – If you ignore your budget and don’t track spending you could end up further in debt very soon. You need to know how much is being spent and what it is being spent on – it also helps to know how much is coming in each month so that you understand how much of it is going back out.

5. Continue education and increase financial literacy – remember that there is always more to learn about finances. Those who succeed with what they earn, save and invest understand that they need to continue their financial education and work to increase their financial literacy.

6. Earn more – If you want to save more, you have to do two things: earn more and spend less. Don’t hesitate to ask for a raise or start a business to earn more money. It will help to fast track your financial goals and accomplishments.

7. Take initiative – take action and play an active role in your accomplishments don’t sit back and wait for good things to come your way. Learn to capitalize on good opportunities that come your way and don’t be afraid to create your own when that well runs dry.

Practicing all of these will help to create better financial habits in the future.

Do you need help with saving more and spending less in order to build something wonderful in the future? If so, contact me today!

Read all of my posts in full here for more information pertaining to nutrition, health, well-being, fitness, and lifestyle design.

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

Would You Like A New Finance Lifestyle Design? Part 2

Pink piggy bank with a dollar bill in the slotEvery woman manages their own finances, usually, and pays the bills but do you work off of a budget? How much of your monthly income are you paying out? Is there a way that you can make reductions in your budget? These are some of the questions that you might be asking yourself every month. There are 10 things that you might be able to change in your budget while also making some small changes in your lifestyle.

Here is the second 5 ways to help change your finance lifestyle design:

1. Clothing – Yes you need clothes but create a strategy for what you need. Make a list, shop from your list and buy only what you can afford to buy. The worst thing to do is to make impulse buys.

2. Transportation – You need to be able to get places, transportation can take up to 50% of a budget. Pay attention to where you can save. Find a car that you will keep for at least 2 years longer than you normally would, check out the gas mileage that it gets, negotiate for better air fare if you fly, or ride a bike for short driving distances.

3. Household and babysitting help – Here is the tough one. For household expenses try to buy the cheaper brands (usually generic), go to discount stores and find bargains. If you have a good babysitter don’t decrease their pay, it is important to take care of those that help to take care of you.

4. Credit – Here is where you can save money. Get 2 month’s worth of credit card bills and total up the interest you paid, if you pay off the credit cards you save that much every month. Lower your credit limits as well so that you don’t have that extra amount to spend on those cards.

5. Taxes – Contribute to your 401(k) every month, make use of your healthcare and dependent care spending accounts at work.

Think of positive lifestyle changes, sometimes it is the littlest things that will help you to save the most money. Even vacations can be affordable and fun. Do your due diligence in researching all of these different avenues in your life; be creative and willing to make those necessary changes.

If you missed the first 5 ways to help change your finance lifestyle design you can read them here.

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.

Would You Like A New Finance Lifestyle Design? Part 1

Pink piggy bank with a dollar bill in the slotEvery woman manages their own finances, usually, and pays the bills but do you work off of a budget? How much of your monthly income are you paying out? Is there a way that you can make reductions in your budget? These are some of the questions that you might be asking yourself every month. There are 10 things that you might be able to change in your budget in order to create a new finance lifestyle design.

Here is the first 5 ways to help change your finance lifestyle design:

1. Fixed monthly expenses – The term fixed makes you believe that it means you can’t change things but it doesn’t mean they’re not negotiable. Make phone calls to try to negotiate terms.

2. Rent or mortgage – If you are paying more than 25% of your income every month in mortgage or rent payments you need to think if this is the long term plan that you want. Can you afford to keep making those high payments?

3. Utilities – Save money by turning down your heat and air conditioning. Do you need a bunch of phone lines? Is your cell phone a necessity to your life?

4. Insurance – If you have term life insurance that is 5 years old call around and get a better rate. Change your deductibles on your auto and home insurance to get a lower rate each month. If your car is paid off remove the collision insurance for a lower rate but keep the disability insurance.

5. Groceries – You don’t need name brand products, the generic ones are just as good. Don’t buy more prepared foods, you can make meals cheaper if you buy the ingredients and make it yourself. It is also healthier for you when it is freshly made by you.
Think of positive lifestyle changes, sometimes it is the littlest things that will help you to save the most money. Even vacations can be affordable and fun. Do your due diligence in researching all of these different avenues in your life; be creative and willing to make those necessary changes.

Come back on Friday for the next 5 ways to help change your finance lifestyle design.

Mavis Kelley, CHHC, AADP is a Certified Integrative Health and Wellness Life Coach specializing in nutrition, health, well-being, fitness and lifestyle design. For more information or to schedule a breakthrough session, please contact her at: Mavis@nspirehealthyliving.net or visit her website at: http://NspireHealthyLiving.com.