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How to improve your financial wellbeing

19 February 2021 | 6 min read

Wellbeing is big business these days.

From yoga and meditation to ice-baths and HIIT, entire industries have been built on helping us feel better.

And whether we’re talking physical, emotional, spiritual or financial wellbeing, the same principles apply when trying to get the best out of ourselves.

Healthy habits

At the core of all wellbeing teachings is the need to a) learn healthy habits, and b) make these healthy habits stick.

Whatever behaviours you’re trying to adopt, they need to become second nature, done without thought – like brushing your teeth.

There lies the challenge.

Have you ever joined a gym, trained your heart out for a month, only for the motivation to evaporate faster than the sweat on your brow?

The number one reason people fail in their endeavours to improve their wellbeing is that they try to do too much, too soon. In a bid to spend less, stress less or eat less they bite off more than they can chew.

High-performance coaches in any field will attest, when it comes to achieving your big goals, THINK SMALL!

As counter intuitive as it might seem, small goals achieved regularly give you the confidence to take another step, and another, and another.

Know your 'why'

The second important element of your road to wellbeing is knowing why you’re doing it in the first place.

Without knowing your why, there’s a good chance you’ll lose your way.

Take the time to cast a critical eye over your goal and what achieving it will mean to you and your loved ones.

Control and influence

Stress is the antithesis of wellbeing.

Too often our minds race with worries over events and circumstances outside our control.

It’s important you identify the things over which you have direct control, things you can influence, and things you can’t control.

Your aim is to focus on the first two and drop concerns associated with the last. It takes practice, but you’ll feel better for it.

Putting it into practice

With this advice fresh in your mind, it’s time to focus on your financial wellbeing. What are the practical, achievable steps you can take? 

Here are some ideas to get you started.

Don’t over-borrow

Debt comes in all shapes and sizes. Big commitments like home loans and car loans can take a big chunk out of your income. But it’s often the smaller ones that can feel like debt-by-a-thousand-cuts. Credit card and buy now, pay later purchases can add up to cause big headaches.

A simple rule is to spend less than you earn. Know what you can afford and stick to it.

Start with small savings

We’ve talked about setting small goals to achieve big things later. Open an account specifically for your savings.

Set up regular payments to this account, no matter how small and insignificant they might seem. You’ll discover that you can save money and your confidence will grow along with your balance.

Remember to celebrate little milestones along the way (just don’t celebrate with a shopping spree).

Take the next step

Once you’ve built a nice balance in your savings account, explore other investment options which could give you better returns.

You could invest in managed funds, shares, or a good old-fashioned term deposit account.

Consider a chat with a financial adviser to set your sights on your next milestone.

Manage your weaknesses

If you know certain types of spending is an area of weakness for you, you can set up rules on your Bendigo Bank credit card to help you avoid impulse purchases and negative spending habits

Whether it’s online shopping, gambling, alcohol or general splurge purchases that you know you’ll regret. You can set up some simple rules and better manage your transactions, to make it easier to keep working towards reaching your savings goals.

To do this, log in to e-banking or the Bendigo Bank app and block the particular merchants on your debit and/or credit card.

Take back control

You can see your progress and you want to keep the momentum going.

Take a closer look at your daily spending habits to find opportunities for saving. If you’re like most people, you’ll find something lurking within your bank statement you can do without.

Remember, these purchases are often completely in your control. You choose whether they’re worth making, or whether your money could be better spent (or saved) elsewhere.

Money worries are stressful, but wellbeing is holistic. Improve your financial wellbeing and you could feel the flow-on effects in all aspects of your life.

ANY ADVICE PROVIDED IN THIS ARTICLE IS OF A GENERAL NATURE ONLY AND DOES NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT YOUR PERSONAL NEEDS, OBJECTIVES AND FINANCIAL CIRCUMSTANCES. YOU SHOULD CONSIDER WHETHER IT IS APPROPRIATE FOR YOUR SITUATION. PLEASE READ THE APPLICABLE PRODUCT DISCLOSURE STATEMENT(S) ON OUR WEBSITE BEFORE ACQUIRING ANY PRODUCT.

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Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited, ABN 11 068 049 178 AFSL / Australian Credit Licence 237879. Any advice provided on this website is of a general nature only and does not take into account your personal needs, objectives and financial circumstances. You should consider whether it is appropriate for your situation. Please read the applicable Disclosure Documents before acquiring any product described on this website. Please also review our Financial Services Guide (FSG) before accessing information on this website. Information on this page can change without notice to you.

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