It is very hard to be happy when you don’t have enough money.  This does not mean that you have to be rich to be happy.  It means that you have enough to pay for essentials like food and shelter, can indulge in the occasional luxury, have minimal credit card debt, and have enough savings to take care of emergencies like temporary job loss and medical incidents.

It’s hard to be happy when you are worried about money.  We all have enough anxiety without it.  To make matters worse, inadequate money brings a lot of other problems.  The anxiety in itself can create health problems like depression.  If you are scrambling to pay bills you may scrimp on auto insurance and medical insurance.  This can easily lead to even more serious problems.

Sensible Prosperity

So a sensible level of prosperity is an essential key to happiness.  Money really does bring happiness.  Or at least it brings relief from some major causes of unhappiness.  No need to get rich.  If you think that you have anxiety now, wait until you have multi-millions to worry about.  Just make enough money to be reasonably comfortable, and enough of a savings plan to cover emergencies and your old age.  Keep in mind that people are now living a lot longer than they used to.

The first step to sensible prosperity is to review your present situation.  How much do you bring in after taxes?  How much do you spend?  If you use Quicken to keep your account records and write checks, print out a spending report.  I guarantee you at least one surprise.  Probably more.

Set Goals

Next, set your financial goals.  How much should you have in savings to take care of emergencies?  How much should you have in investments when you retire?  It’s unpleasant to outlive your money, although many famous people have done just that.  Thomas Jefferson was supported by “loans” from his many friends when he got very old.  I guarantee another surprise when you find out how much you need to take care of your retirement.

Once you have taken these steps you have the beginning of a financial plan.  The next step is to examine what you have to do right now to reach your financial goals.  If you are lucky you are already in good shape.  If not, it’s time to examine what you could do about it.

There are basically two ways to put aside money; spend less than you make, or make more than you spend.

In the first approach you may decide to re-arrange your expenses, perhaps reduce or eliminate some items.  You may decide to take advantage of the many cost saving offers that are available.  Or hold on to your longer, before getting a new one.  There are a lot of things you can do and there are a lot of books on the subject.

The second approach is to explore ways to increase your income.  How long since your last raise?  When did you last explore changing jobs, even changing fields to bring in more money?  Have you ever thought about a home business that you would develop in your spare time?  These are just a few suggestions.

You may find that simply reading this article and taking some of the recommended actions makes you feel better.  This is a hint of how you will feel when you become more prosperous.

You will find a lot more information on prosperity on https://soundcloud.com/truefortunes/prosperity

Good luck!

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