The whole point of hustling is to move financially forward, right? Side-jobs, projects, and other money-making endeavors are meant to bolster your finances and grant you more of a financial “cushion”. Why then, do we engage in habits that only serve to hold us back from those financial goals? You might not even realize that your bad habits are so severely affecting your wallet, to the point where it can feel like you’re actually hustling backward.
These five habits are probably currently in your life or were at some point, and all five of them have the effect of causing financial damage and hold you back from your goals. Let’s ditch them and start the journey forward, shall we? Here are five habits that’ll make you feel like you’re hustling backwards.
You had to know this one would be on the list, right? With the average pack of cigarettes falling somewhere between $4 and $10 depending on the state, it’s no wonder that smokers always feel like they’re moving backward. And that’s just the cost of the cigarettes themselves! Maybe that’s why so many smokers are ditching the habit altogether or opting for tobaccoless products instead.
Smoking can cost you hundreds each month and thousands per year, but let’s look closer at the habit. Let’s take into account the medical bills for things like lung cancer (health problems are inevitable when you’re a smoker), the value of your home falling by about 29% from smoking inside, and your car’s value dropping dramatically because of the habit.
Let’s say your home is worth $125,000. 29% would be $36,250. Let’s say your car is worth $10,000, and smoking dropped that value by $4,200. And, for the sake of speculation, let’s say you developed lung cancer, which can cost about $2,000 per month for treatment, which takes you one year and three months to complete. Oh, and don’t forget the $390 per month on actual cigarettes at two packs per day at $6.50 each.
That’s a total of about $75,000 for one year.
2. Impulse Spending
Those new shoes just look so good! But wait, you have 20 pairs in your closet already…but you don’t have these shoes.
Does this conversation sound familiar? We’ve all had it at one point or another, whether it was regarding those fabulous heels, that killer golf club set, or the latest iPhone. We are a nation of production and consumption, and everything seems to revolve around the concept of “Buy, buy, buy!”
Cutting out impulse spending can you save you a good portion of your income each year and help your reduce credit card debt. Since most credit card debt is accrued via unnecessary purchases, you could drastically reduce yours by practicing self-control; and you won’t feel like you’re moving backward.
3. Not Getting Enough Sleep
How can you hustle if you’re exhausted? Believe it or not, the higher quality your sleep is, the better your life is all-around. You’ll have more energy, motivation, and be more alert throughout the day. This can mean making better decisions, being more aware of what’s happening around you, and being more aware of yourself and your poor habits.
A strict sleep schedule might even reduce your dependency on caffeine as well. Caffeine is certainly an addiction for Americans, who consume millions of gallons of coffee and other caffeinated beverages annually. The money you spend on coffee and the hours of productivity you’ve lost to not getting a restful night’s sleep can leave you hustling backward. Time for bed!
4. Neglecting Your Credit Score
No one likes to track their credit. It’s inconvenient and can leave you feeling dispirited when you learn that your efforts aren’t paying off as quickly as you’d like. What’s worse than that? Ignoring it, of course.
Ignoring your credit score and report can land you in hot water with creditors. If you have a bill that goes to collections, it becomes a negative mark on your report, and you can bet that future creditors will take collections very seriously. With so many free credit report websites available today, there’s really no excuse for ignoring it.
You’re also entitled to one free credit report every 12 months, by law. You can get your free credit report here: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/index.action
5. Neglecting Your Investments
We’re not talking stock portfolios, here. We’re talking about your personal investments like vehicles, homes, and everyday items. Each time you purchase something, you’re investing in your future. You’re taking a chance on that item, praying that the initial investment will pay dividends in the end. Whether it’s the home you just bought selling for a greater value in the future, the car you purchased getting you to work every day, or the new vacuum functioning for years to come, it’s time to stop neglecting your investments.
That means maintaining your vehicle’s health. Get the oil changed regularly, the tires rotated, and have your major components inspected. Keep your home in good shape, make improvements, and don’t neglect its upkeep. What you put into your investments will show in the end!