June 8th, 2011

5 Quick Money Actions To Boost Your Financial Self-Esteem

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How does your debt make you feel? Proud?

That’s what a new study suggests: young adults feel empowered by their credit card and education debts.

“Researchers found that the more credit card and college loan debt held by young adults aged 18 to 27, the higher their self-esteem and the more they felt like they were in control of their lives,” the study reports.

If you’re looking to get a boost in your own financial self-esteem, we don’t really recommend taking out $100,000 in student loans.

Instead, try one of these basic money actions to empower you in responsible ways.

  1. For one month, double a debt repayment. Whether it’s paying down more credit card, student loan, mortgage, or auto loan debt, you’ll be even closer to being debt free, and that’s never a bad thing.
  2. Open an online savings account. One of the best ways to discipline yourself to save for a big purchase is to put money away into a savings account. Need a new laptop? Saving for a special trip? Set up an account with Discover or ING Direct and let your money earn some interest while you save. Online savings accounts typically have higher APY’s, which will give you more bang for your buck.
  3. Learn one recipe. It may not seem like a money action, but it is. Eating dinner out several times a week can get expensive! Learning recipes will empower you to make more meals at home and eat out less. Don’t know where to look? Use Super Cook to find recipes for the ingredients you already have.
  4. Say “no” to one large expense. Maybe your friends are planning an expensive weekend getaway. Or perhaps you’ve been invited to a swanky summer event with a soaring ticket price. Either way, evaluate your summer fun. It shouldn’t all be expensive, and saying “no” to a large expense shouldn’t offend your friends. Try suggesting a less expensive alternative, like a picnic in the park or a free summer concert series.
  5. Lower one fixed expense. Have you ever tried to negotiate for a lower cable or cell phone bill? You may be missing out on discounts simply because you haven’t asked. Give your cable provider and cell phone carrier a call and see if you can negotiate a lower payment. And don’t let that extra savings go to waste– put it away in your newly opened online savings account!

Bottom Line: Building financial self-esteem is about being in control of your money and knowing where your cash is going. Make one of these money moves and you’ll get closer to being in control of your spending and debt.

Disclaimer: All information posted to this site was accurate at the time of its initial publication. Efforts have been made to keep the content up to date and accurate. However, Credit Karma does not make any guarantees about the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. For complete details of any products mentioned, visit bank or issuer website.

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