Good financial habits today are acts of empathy for your future self. Future-you will always appreciate when an emergency fund tucked away in earlier times comes in handy for surprises like a pet getting sick, a sudden need to move, or you know, a pandemic. Financial literacy is even more crucial during times of economic uncertainty because it will greatly influence how we position ourselves for future success.
When it comes to money and the economy, no one is expected to see around corners. Throw in a pandemic and predicting the future becomes nearly impossible. But one eternally useful skill is the ability to make smart and practical financial choices for yourself. This means something different for everyone because of unique goals and values, but being financially literate steadies the boat through choppy waters for everyone. Wall Street’s extreme volatility has been a daily reminder of how turbulent those waters can be. Now is the time to either learn to sail, or put your financial lessons into action to steer the ship to smooth seas.
When it comes to skiing, driving a car or performing heart surgery, knowing what you’re doing definitely increases your confidence. Duh, right? Well, it’s also true with regards to financial literacy. Before the pandemic, 80% of Americans were already living paycheck to paycheck and credit card debt was averaging $6200. Now, approximately 1 in 10 are seeking work. Many Americans are understandably stressed and scared about money right now, but the good news is that financial literacy is very teachable. Learning about money is a lifelong process and it’s never too late to educate yourself. The stakes are too high not to.
There are plenty of free online lessons about money that are available and it’s a tangible way to increase confidence in the face of economic uncertainty. Plus, financial literacy has been proven to decrease someone’s financial mistakes and increase their ability to directly address financial struggles.
More? Yes, please.