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Chapter 24. The Freedom Plan > 6. How much money do you really need? How much i...

6. How much money do you really need? How much is enough? Is enough enough?

You will need to do your homework, reach out to some resources, and continue your soul searching to get to these answers. The first order of business is to construct a budget if you don’t already have one. Enter every possible expense that you can think of. Don’t forget items such as vacations, dining out, charities, gifts, insurance, car maintenance or transportation, extra medical expenses, magazines and newspapers, sports, hobbies, and classes. Even enter items such as manicures, facials, or massages if you do this regularly.

Get a fix on what you spend each year and examine what is necessary, what could be cut down, and what could be cut out. A good, informative exercise is to create a spending diary. Write in every dollar you spend for a month and see what surprises you find. I created a diary after a panic attack, just before I was about to give my final notice. I was afraid that I didn’t have enough money and would have to eat tomato sandwiches for the rest of my life. This fear ran through me even though I had checked and rechecked my budget and financial plans many times. My surprise came with the amount of money I was spending on cabs and dry cleaning, both areas that could and did decline in my new life, but certainly not a block point to my plan. You will quickly see which drains your monies are going down and take steps to plug them.


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