Money makeover

Have you applied your make-up today?  I am pretty sure that the ladies would understand the ‘make-up’ process more than men, even though these days some men too have pitched tent in the beauty industry.

Just for the avoidance of doubt, the make-up that l am referring to here is to infer the processes through which you would deliberately remodel or restyle part of the body to reflect a particular look that you want.

It is often made to make you look different, mostly beautiful or for some shenanigans, to deceive. Movie stars and other stage actors do it too. They love make-up to make them look good on screen.

In fact, whenever l have had to appear on TV, mostly for live broadcast, a little bit of ‘make-up’ (as it is used to describe all the foundation, fillers, etc. applied to the face) is applied on my face.

Often times, it made my face look so different; masking all the spots and leaving a very smooth face to the extent that l always wonder why men are not allowed to do it as freely as women do! It’s that good.

Now, using the same analogy, let’s look at how the make-up process could apply to your financial situation too. The make-up is meant to change something, right? Great!

It is often the case that it does not necessarily mean that you don’t look the part that is why you make-up, but rather because you believe a little bit of it brings a glow that makes you look even far better.

Applied to finances, the analogy is that you don’t need your finances to look bad before you apply the ‘make-up’ to make it over. Your finances may look good to you, but you may still need some adjustments to make sure that you are indeed looking the part.

Take the case of a simple family budget, for example. Whilst researching for my book, Dealing with the little leaks that keep you poor, l became fully aware of the extent to which a simple family budget could improve household finances. It was like a make-up. I was amazed about some of the things that l found during the research.

Some households explained to me how by just adjusting their spending habit, they were able to save about 20 per cent every month from what they used to spend.

“We spent so much on items we didn’t need after all. We were buying things because we felt we would need them, but we didn’t really. We just decided not to buy and hoard again when we drew up a simple budget, but rather we would buy on-demand, as to when we really needed the item.

“We also decided to look at the must-haves first and then we considered the nice-to-have”, one family explained.

Continuing, the family explained that “After we had all the must-haves, the children were then refusing the nice-to-haves. One after another, they all rejected what we had all along felt they needed. Indeed, when we went through the garage and the storage room, we noticed that some of the items that we had bought for them more than three years ago were still unwrapped.

They didn’t need it after all. That helped us to keep the house tidy and the budget slim too!”

So, that was indeed a lesson in financial make-over; a positive money consciousness developed to keep both the finances and the house tidy.

By Bernard Otabil / The Mirror/ Ghana

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