Tag Archives: Personal Finance

These People are Toxic!

When you make a mistake, these people are never far away. Lurking behind the corner, they are quick to criticize and slow to congratulate. It is almost as if they are only capable of seeing the negative in everything. Even if they unintentionally run across something good, they manage to twist it into a negative. They drain the joy out of everything.

Their negativity applies to your finances and life balance. Instead of encouraging, they tell you what you can’t do. You can never pay off your home. You can never send your kids to college. You can never eliminate your credit card debt. You will never have enough time. Your goals are too idealistic. They say these are facts of life we must all accept. They tell you that the glass is half empty, and it’s ugly.

Here’s the good news- they’re wrong! Since they’re wrong, you don’t have to listen to them. Avoid their negativity. Exposing yourself to it only undermines your ability to get out of debt and into the life you want. Don’t believe the lies. You can pay off your home. You can send your kids to college. You can reach all of these goals!

Also, don’t just avoid the toxic people. Replace them with positive people! These people can encourage you as you pursue your goals and strive to live debt free. Listen to people who encourage you. They will help you as you attain your goals, and they will be there to celebrate your victories with you.

You have a choice, and the choice is yours.

Bryan Cooper

My Financial Life Coach LLC
“Helping You Get Your Financial House In Order”
2280 W William St., Suite A
Delaware, OH 43015

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Filed under Attitude, Budget, Events, Finance, Goal Setting, Life Balance, Money, Personal Finance, Relationships & Money, Stress, Thoughts

Time to say goodbye….

Dear John (or Mary),

I’ve been patient. I’ve put off writing this letter as long as possible, hoping things would change. I dreamed that this would finally be the year you follow through on your promises.

I can’t do this any longer. Every January, you tell me things will be different. You say this is the year you’ll pay off your car. This is the year you’ll follow a budget. This is the year you’ll let your goals control your finances.

John, don’t you understand how much this is hurting me? I want this for you, not for me. I have always wanted what’s best for you. I want you to take control of your finances so that money isn’t running your life. You have goals. I’ve heard your dreams. They’re wonderful. I want you to achieve those, but you never will until you get your finances under control.

I hope you defeat this monster you’ve created. I hope you reach your goals. But John, I can’t stand the disappointment. I have to leave you. You’ve given me no choice.

It’s not about the money. Financial success is about you achieving your goals, living out your dreams. It’s about living the life you’ve always wanted, for both you and your family. You’ve given up on me. We’ll never have a healthy relationship if you keep living like this

I wish things could have ended differently between us.
Best of luck,

Your Financial Success & Dreams

(Note from Coach Bryan – So what are you willing to do to make your finances or your work-life balance better in 2013? Need some daily motivation about saving money or saving time? Please stop over at https://www.facebook.com/MyFinancialLifeCoach  and “Like” the page so you can start receiving daily tips. While you are at it, hit the “share” button on one of the articles and bring your friends along for the ride as well. You will find yourself more successful in saving money and saving time if you are doing it together with your friends. Bryan Cooper – My Financial Life Coach).

My Financial Life Coach, LLC



January 7, 2013 · 8:30 pm

The enemies of your financial goals

English: A picture of a large drill used in co...

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a.       Discontentment

Nothing will blow your financial goals or budget faster than discontentment. Discontentment leads to purchases that are not in the budget. The neighbors redo their landscaping and so now you feel you need to update yours. You were fine with your landscaping until that happened. So now you go out and update your landscaping, which wasn’t in the budget this year.

b.      No financial training

I’ve talked about this before and this is a big issue. I never had a single class in school on budgeting, managing a checkbook, debt, etc. Unfortunately a lot of training comes from sales people, not teachers. Most of people learned about purchasing and paying for a car from a car dealer or car lot. We learn how to buying a home from a realtor and mortgage company. Many decisions are made based on input from folks who will profit from the sale of the item. They get paid if you buy, they don’t get paid if you don’t buy. It is hard to get unbiased advice in that situation no ma

c.       Impulse buying – using existing resources.

I call this the “I want it now; even if it means I can’t get what I really want later.” This is a trap a lot of folks fall into but they don’t see it as an issue because no debt is directly involved with these purchases. Basically they buy what they want and spend everything. The real issue is that because they are spending all of their money, they do not put money away for bigger ticket items like appliances, cars, and retirement. Because they are not saving for these items they will most likely go into debt at a later time for these items.

d.    Impulse buying – using future resources (BORROWING)

I call this the “I want it now. Therefore, I will borrow!” This is called spending more than you make. Anytime you borrow you are taking future income, that you do not know for sure that you will have, to pay for something you will begin using immediately. That involves risk. Another point to this is when you borrow money you pay interest. When you pay interest your money doesn’t go as far. It is like getting a decrease in your income.

e.     Not understanding the differences between needs, wants, and desires.

This is another area that will mess up your budget quickly. I like to use a drill as an example. For an individual uses a drill 2-10 times a year, their need can be met by a $30-50 drill. Nothing is gained by buying a more expensive drill since the users doesn’t use it much. Most likely the batteries will go bad before the drill wears out.

For the do-it-yourselfer who uses it almost every weekend, the $30-40 drill will not hold up so they will need to move to a $70-130 drill. They may be tempted to move to the professional grade drill but all that is accomplished is they spent more money for a drill when the $70-130 drill would have met their needs.

For the professional who uses a drill every day, they need a drill in the $130-300 range. None of the two previously mentioned categories of drills will meet their need.

I understand buying quality products. In example above it would make no sense for the individual who uses a drill 2-10 times a year to shell out $300 for a drill. The $300 drill in this case is totally a “desire” and not a “need.” Look around your house and look at the items that you have purchased where you bought “desire” instead of need or even a “want.”

Two other areas where we confuse needs, wants, and desires are with homes and vehicles.  Nothing wrong with getting into the “wants” and “desires” as long as it isn’t messing up your overall financial goals.

“Is your current lifestyle getting in the way of your goals?”  – Bryan Cooper

Thank you for reading the My Financial Life Coach blog where we talk about money, goals, family, life events, spending, and economic news. We do make every attempt to avoid the topic of politics but we will bring up economic policies that need communicated. Our job is to educate and motivate you to the debt-free life style.

Don’t forget to checkout our website, www.MyFinancialLifeCoach.net  for 100’s of resources including tips, articles, spreadsheets, web-based training, and more.  Why not tell a friend? Looking for daily motivation on your financial walk? Checkout the My Financial Life Coach Facebook page.


Filed under Balance, Budget, Economy, Events, Family, Finance, Goals, Life, Life Balance, Money, Personal Finance, Priorities, Uncategorized

Step 2 – Determine your goals. Think LONG-TERM

 “Your personal goals (vision) need to determine your spending, not your spending determine your goals.”    –  Bryan Cooper 


Dream a little . . . what would “Financial Freedom” look like to you? Close your eyes, can you see it? Can you taste it? Reflect on this for a few moments.

As I’ve coached over the years I have learned that you must spell out what financial freedom means to you and you must start establishing and prioritizing goals to get there. When I work with a client the first thing we do is spend 30 minutes in this area and we revisit it during the entire process. This is where you design life around family, events, etc.

Please understand that you don’t need to have every detail figured out before you start, you just need to start!     Brainstorm your goals. Your goals should include financial and non-financial goals. Establishing the right goals will help you with life balance.


Your goals need to include:

  1. Very short-term goals –  (under 1 year):
  2. Short term goals – (1-5 years):
  3. Long term goals – (over 5 years):

Your goals should become your compass. Everything you do will be measured against your list of goals. As every new opportunity comes before you, you will evaluate it to see if the opportunity helps you toward your goals, or away from them. If it helps, consider it. If the opportunity distracts or hurts your progress towards your goals, eliminate, say no to it because it will get you off course.

Remember, your goal list is a living document. You will make changes to it as priorities change or as other life events unfold in your life.

Take Action

So today why don’t you do the following two action items.

1. Take a pencil and paper and start writing out what Financial Freedom means to you.

2. Write out your goals, breaking them into < one year, 1-5 years, and > than 5 years.

It’s your life; why not make the most of it?

Remember, YOU have a choice, and the choice is YOURS.


Bryan Cooper

My Financial Life Coach, LLC

Delaware, Ohio



Thank you for reading the My Financial Life Coach blog where we talk about life, food, family, life events, spending, and economic news. We do make every attempt to avoid the topic of politics but we will bring up economic policies that need communicated.


Filed under Blog, Change, Events, Family, Financial, Food, Goal Setting, Goals, household budget, Life, Personal Finance, Stress

Three attitudes that really mess with your financial wellness

Attitude is Everything!

Attitude is everything in the game of personal finance. About 60% of the folks I meet with have the right attitude, the attitude that they can take action and correct their situation, no matter who caused it. For this post I want to talk t0 the other 40%.

1.   The government or my employer will take care of me.

It isn’t wise to allow others who have little or no vested interest in your well-being to have control over your future. I’m not making a political statement here. It is in your best interest to take an active role in your finances, your education, your employment, your health, and your retirement.  Being passive or not taking responsibility in these areas could result in a non-positive outcome. You need to take action and own the responsibility.

2.   I’ll do something about my situation tomorrow.

You need to DO IT TODAY! Stop procrastinating. Take action. The two main reasons I see procrastination with finances is a) lack of knowledge, or 2) the fear of failure so no action is taken, which results in failure anyway.

3.   I don’t need a written plan for my financial goals.

I’m sure you have heard the saying “What is measured gets managed.”  It is also true with budgets. Writing it down:  a) it keeps it in front of you b) it improves the communication because it is documented, and c) it makes it real because you can read it and touch.

Remember, YOU have a choice, and the choice is YOURS.

Ten years or twenty years from now, will you be saying “I wish I had gotten my finances in order”, or will you be saying, “I’m REALLY glad I DID get my finances in order!”    – Bryan Cooper

Bryan Cooper

My Financial Life Coach, LLC

Delaware, Ohio



Thank you for reading the My Financial Life Coach blog where we talk about life, food, family, life events, spending, and economic news. We do make every attempt to avoid the topic of politics but we will bring up economic policies that need communicated.


Filed under Blog, Budget, Change, Economy, Events, Family, Food, Goal Setting, Goals, household budget, Money, News, Personal Finance, Priorities, Procrastination, Saving Money

Step 1- Know Your Financial Condition

Now that you spent time putting your budget together how are you feeling about it? Have you been looking for spare change in the car or couch?

I typically hear one of the following four responses

1. We are so stupid with our finances.

Now that the spending has been put down on paper it becomes real, very real. Most of us never had any personal finance training in school; instead we were busy learning things like the Periodic Chart (which most of us have never used), instead of learning personal finance that we all need/use every day.  Bottom-line, you had no training in personal finance so your issue may be that you lack knowledge, but it doesn’t mean you’re stupid.

2. I’ll bet you have never seen anyone in this bad of shape.

There is always someone worse off than you, both in your town and in another country. Be thankful for what you have, and if you are feeling sorry for yourself . . . STOP!! You are now aware of the situation and you have the resources to correct the situation. Read a book, read a blog, take an on-line training course, attend a class, or talk to someone who knows how to help you. You have options…but you MUST take action!!

3. I’m so embarrassed

Don’t be. None of us are experts in everything but it is your responsibility to get out there and learn what you need to learn so you can effectively manage your finances. This will be a continuous process, not a once and done. Like I just mentioned above, you have options to get this corrected. Get out there and find the resources that meet your needs; and ignore the advice from that broke brother-in-law of yours.

4. I’m (We’re) better off than we thought.

Good for you! You may be better off than you thought but are you where you need to be?

Whatever your reaction, whatever your situation, the key is to not ignore it. Get in there and get your situation turned around. Budgeting is not rocket science, you can do it.

Remember, YOU have a choice, and the choice is YOURS.

Bryan Cooper
My Financial Life Coach, LLC
Delaware, Ohio

Thank you for reading the My Financial Life Coach blog where we talk about life, food, family, life events, spending, and economic news. We do make every attempt to avoid the topic of politics but we will bring up economic policies that need communicated.

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Filed under Education, Family, Finance, household budget, Money, Personal Finance, Stress