Taking Control Of Personal Finances

Lunch and Learn

Frontal standing pose (in front of my counter) with my white cane

Yesterday I went to THE best networking/financial luncheon seminar where I met some impressive entrepreneurs and gained valuable knowledge on personal/business finance! Coming from me this means a great deal because typically when talking finances, numbers or any combination of the two, my eyes glaze over.

A few months ago I mentioned that after receiving my professional image consulting certification I was starting my own business. Things were going along at a nice pace then out of nowhere – BAM a huge unavoidable setback.

Now that things have settled down a bit I am once again back on track to complete my business plan along with several related projects while simultaneously running this blog. Phew, there are days I wonder how I’m able to keep my head on straight but it’s all good because my passion keeps me going. At any rate back to the topic at hand.

The speaker, Tammy, was so engaging I couldn’t help but to be interested in the subject matter to the point of wanting more information. She talked about budgeting, credit, banking, and one of my favorite topics: wants versus needs where she gave us much food for thought on how we can reduce some of our monthly expenditures.

Cutting and Tracking Expenses

Cable and cell phones topped the list. Tammy asked us if we are not heavy TV users why then would we need the deluxe packages with a gazillion channels? Downsizing to basic cable, Netflix, Hulu, digital antennas or even satellite TV are more cost-effective alternatives,

Frontal pose with white cane leaning against counter.

Frontal standing pose with white cane leaning on right arm against counter.

As for cell phones there are many prepaid plans that use the same towers as the big carriers like Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint. Many of these plans offer unlimited talk, text, and data with the added benefit of no contracts.

Among the packets of information that Tammy gave us was a list of helpful financial apps that are all free and compatible with Android, iPhone, and iPad operating systems. The first two apps operate on the envelope system of budgeting (click HERE for more information).

  • Good budget
    Cloud based app that syncs across devices and web, allows users to divvy up money into different categories and tracks spending.
  • Mvelopes
    Syncs with user’s bank accounts and automatically categorizes spending and gives weekly reports.
  • BillGuard
    Tracks spending habits and allows customers to report fraud and suspicious charges with the click of a button.
  • Expensify
    Allows customers to photograph items or receipts to keep track of spending habits, visual interface captures spending leaks.

In addition to the topics mentioned, one of the things that Tammy stressed was the importance of credit monitoring. Beginning by obtaining free annual credit reports from the three bureaus at www.annualcreditreport.com (this site never asks for a credit card). In addition to the annual report, sites like www.creditkarma.com provide monthly credit reports, credit scores, and alerts indicating a change in credit scores.

Frontal standing pose with white cane in front of counter

So what does one wear to a networking/financial seminar? Since I knew it was going to be hot and humid my choice was simple. I wore a white textured midi skirt, black short-sleeved peplum top with d’orsay heels with a blue toe and black heels.

When it’s as hot as it was yesterday I try to keep my accessories to a minimum to avoid triggering a hot flash. The only jewelry I wore yesterday were earrings, bracelet and my usual rings. The earrings were 2 inches long, diamond-shaped etched silver with a diamond-shaped faux turquoise stone in the center and the shamballa bracelet has 7 small crystal encrusted beads with shiny hematite beads at the end of each adjustable pull.

Face to face encounters, especially those like networking events, are always a bit of a challenge for introverts which is why it’s critical to let your best self shine through. When feeling and looking good come together the natural outcome is confidence.

“Financial freedom is available to those who learn about it and work for it.” ~Robert Kiyosaki

Author: Steph McCoy

Hi I'm Steph, a businesswoman, style setter, blogger, and abilities crusader who breaks the myth that “blind people can’t be fashionable.” “It’s about walking boldly with confidence, transcending barriers and changing the way we perceive blindness”

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