Wisdom Wednesday: Living Within Your Means

budget

Spending less than you make is the foundation of personal financial success. In a world that encourages us to get rich quick and take shortcuts to financial stability, it’s often hard to sort out the good advice from the bad. However, simple math never lies. You cannot get ahead in life if you are spending more than what you bring in.

If you constantly feel like there is more month than money, work on developing these five habits and make your money start working for you.

1. Use a budget

A 2013 Gallup survey found that only 32 percent of all American households use a budget. The same poll also found that households making over $75,000 a year were most likely to budget. In other words, wealthy families and individuals become wealthy and maintain their financial status by budgeting their resources. You can find simple budgeting forms online or stop by the GOAL Center on DCC’s campus to speak with a coach about budgeting and receive a free budgeting binder to help stay organized with your personal finances.

2. Keep track of expenses

Make yourself accountable to your budget and you’ll quickly find out where you and your family are overspending. When you start tracking where and how you spend your money, you may be surprised at how much eating out for lunch, quick trips to the store, and movie night are really costing you. Keeping track of spending will also let you know where you can cut back.

3. Distinguish wants from needs

Every day advertisers try to tell us what we need to be happy. In 2011 alone, Ad Age estimates that companies spent over $50 billion US dollars on television advertising. Companies use marketing teams, social psychologists and millions and millions of dollars to trick us into buying things we don’t need. Be aware of how advertising influences your purchasing and ask yourself before every purchase, “Do I really need this?” Impulsive spending habits can lead to multitudes of debt and lack of essential savings.

4. Avoid comparisons

Mark Twain once said, “Comparison is the death of joy.” Trying to keep up with others will rob us of happiness and leave us in debt. When we’re chasing someone else’s lifestyle, we’re forgoing the opportunity to create a life filled with the things that truly make us happy.

5. Develop an attitude of gratitude

Much overspending could be avoided if we appreciated what we already have. Oftentimes, we buy things because we are feeling bored, lonely, isolated or upset. The next time you want to indulge in some retail therapy, make a list of ten things you’re grateful for first. Switching your focus from what you don’t have to what you do puts finances in their proper perspective. Accumulating stuff cannot bring long-term happiness, but feeling like a slave to your money will certainly bring long-term misery.

Financial advisor Dave Ramsey is famous for saying that finance is 20 percent head knowledge and 80 percent behavior. While it’s helpful to have a sound understanding of budgeting and financial planning, the most important ingredient for successfully living within your means is having a good attitude about money.

By being accountable for where your money goes and avoiding the pitfalls of social comparison, you’ll be well on your way to financial stability

Source: http://familyshare.com/5-must-have-habits-to-live-within-your-means
Written By: Heather Hale

Free Money for School: Scholarships @ DCC

College-financial-aid

Are you debating whether or not it will be worth it to fill out a scholarship application this year? Here are 9 great reasons why you should:

  1. You need a study break and filling out a scholarship application is a good diversion.
  2. You have studied many long hours to get great grades.
  3. Scholarships are investments in your future- it’s time to think about YOU!
  4. Not all scholarships are based on need, some are based on academic or personal achievements.
  5. Scholarships are a great way to pay for school – it is funding that you don’t have to pay back!
  6. Rather than having to search for scholarships and complete numerous applications, the DCC scholarship process is an opportunity to apply for multiple scholarships with one application.
  7. You are unique in all that you do and it is about time that you tell someone else about it.
  8. There are many scholarships that were setup with exactly you and your talents in mind.
  9. Writing an essay about yourself may not be an easy task, but good practice for writing cover letters, resumes and personal statements.

DCC offers a variety of scholarships for students in many categories.  Please read below for general information:

  • Scholarship recipients must apply for financial aid prior to submitting the scholarship application.
    (Call the Financial Aid office at 434-797-8567 or your Student Success Coach at 434-797-8536 to schedule an appointment to fill out your FAFSA.)
  • The grade point average and credit hour requirements for each scholarship vary according to the specific guidelines of the individual scholarship.
  • The scholarship must be used in the 2015-2016 academic year and will be disbursed in accordance with the criteria for each individual scholarship.
  • Only one application should be completed to be considered for all scholarships. (All questions must be answered for the applicant to be considered for a scholarship.  Please use complete sentences.)

Applications for the DCC Educational Foundation Scholarships for 2015-2016 must be received by March 31, 2015. Applicants must have applied for admission to Danville Community College by the scholarship application deadline. Late applications will be kept on file in case additional scholarships become available during the academic year.

  • The Online Application for Admission is also available in print form from high school counseling offices or may be obtained from the DCC Admissions office by calling 434-797-8467.
  • Scholarship recipients must be enrolled in a curriculum at DCC. (Call the Counseling Office at  434-797-8460 and schedule an appointment.)

Click on the link below to access the form and learn about the new online scholarship process:
Danville Community College Scholarship Application Form