by Lyle Daly | April 8, 2019
With a book and now an extremely popular Netflix series to her name, Marie Kondo has brought minimalism into the public eye like never before. If you spend much time on social media, you're bound to see people using the KonMari Method to declutter their homes.
Although Marie Kondo's teachings focus on home organization, they can be just as useful for tidying up your finances. With a few adjustments here and there, the financial side of your life will be a well-oiled machine that doesn't cause you any stress.
When Marie Kondo works with clients, her first step is having them visualize what they want their home to look like. This image provides motivation and gives them a goal to aim for.
You can do the same thing by envisioning where you want to be financially and then figuring out actionable steps to get there.
Let's say you want to be debt-free, have $15,000 in an emergency fund, and save 20% of your income. To get there, you may decide that you need to:
Gone are the days when you needed to file away every receipt and financial document. It's much more efficient, both in terms of space and organization, to digitize your records.
There are some documents you'll need to keep physical copies of, such as birth certificates, marriage records, and your Social Security card. But for the vast majority of your documents, it makes sense to store them digitally.
Switch to paperless statements with your banks and credit card companies. With physical documents you need to keep a record of, just scan them into your computer and then shred them. If you keep your files stored on your computer and uploaded to cloud storage, you'll be protected even in the event that one storage method goes down.
An essential part of the KonMari Method is decluttering by removing unnecessary belongings from the home. We can do the same with our finances by taking a good, hard look at our monthly spending.
Go over every expense and ask yourself:
The point here is not to remove all but the bare essentials from your life. It's to ensure that you're only spending your hard-earned money on what really matters to you.
Aim for quality over quantity with your banking, credit card, and retirement accounts. More accounts just mean more to manage.
Here's how to consolidate your accounts in each of those areas:
If you find yourself juggling multiple credit cards, having trouble keeping up with all your bill payments, and spending money frivolously, then tidying up your finances could be exactly what you need. It doesn't take long to make a positive change in how you handle your money.
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