Welcome to week 50 of Simplify Your Life! I don’t know about you, but I cannot believe we are finally here. I will admit this was a bigger commitment than I ever imagined, but I feel proud for seeing it through- especially writing these last handful of weeks while on the road with my family when my mind does not seem to want to connect with the laptop.
I had saved money for last and now see the side benefit of the timing to serve as a reminder to be intentional about our money at the one time of year many of us seem to go with the flow and shop til we drop. Often we feel the pressure to deliver wonderful gifts as a sign of our love, thanks and consideration for everyone in our lives from friends to families to teachers and those who serve and support our lives.
First we discussed being aware of where you stand financially and where you want to go. Then we looked at ways to reach our financial goals by cutting down our outgoings. The next piece of the puzzle to reaching our goals is increasing money coming in! Here are a handful of ideas to get you started.
Increase your salary
The most obvious, but often hardest to achieve is simply to get a raise if you are employed. Easier if you are overdue and the company is doing well. Harder in tough economic times. Just remember “if you don’t ask you don’t get”.
Women are more likely than men to wait patiently for an employer to reward their efforts rather than prepare and present a case of why they deserve to be rewarded financially. Do your research and have your argument ready – simply needing more money is not a valid approach to an employer.
If you have your own business / work freelance consider where your rates currently sit. Are you competitively priced or underselling yourself to keep the work coming in. Consider raising your rates so you are working smarter and not harder. What will the market bear? Who are your ideal clients?
Find more/ paid work opportunities
Whether you currently have paid work or not, you can look for paid opportunities to bring income into your household. Consider using your skills for consulting or freelance work allowing for income without long term commitment. You can also look at taking on part time roles – either as a second job or as a way to boost income for the family while still taking care of household duties.Seasonal roles are a very attractive way to boost income to meet a goal or knock down debt.
Sell your unwanted or unneeded goods
Most of our homes are filled with items we no longer need or love. Just because they are not right for us does not mean they are ready for the trash pile. If you have not finished the challenges from weeks 22 and 23 , declutter your home and your wardrobe for items that are still in great condition and look at selling those online, at a consignment store or via garage sale, etc.
For much of my children’s early years I cleaned out their stuff at least two or three times a year and sold items before they had a chance to be ruined (ie if they were not being played with I admitted this and sold them) and usually brought in enough money each time to fund the next round of purchases (ie birthday gifts) so that I was very rarely using new funds. I even made a profit several times on popular kids’ items I had scored at a bargain price, used and then sold months later.
Make your online time pay
These days you can earn money without ever leaving home or doing actual “work”in the traditional sense. Look into taking surveys (be aware of the rate of pay and the time involved so you use your time wisely). Use browsers or shopping sites that give cash rewards or rebates.
What other ways do you know to increase income: What has worked for you? What will you be trying in the coming weeks and months?
Find your simple,
Photo credit: Money image from flickr user 401(K) 2012
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