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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

3 Steps to Overcome Financial Stress in Early Recovery



Changes in early recovery don't come easy.
There's almost always unresolved issues from before you became clean and sober.
One of the most common is the financial burden.
If you're struggling financially here are three ways to get yourself back on the road to financial independence.
1. Start With a Job
It's clear that if you don't have a job, you won't find financial security.
I hear people say all the time that there are no jobs available. What they really mean is "there are no jobs I'd like to do". This is a much different idea.
We don't always get the job we'd like, but you can't be too picky. Especially if you have to work two jobs to get the money you need.
If you already have a job and it doesn't pay enough, try to look for a BETTER position somewhere else.
and then...
2. Make Yourself a Budget
Think of a budget as a road map.
You need to know where you're going and check periodically to see if you're headed in the right direction.
Be sure to allocate a specific amount for every expense to avoid overspending.
You'd be amazed at how much you spend on simple things like fast food and coffee. So, limit yourself to enough money for entertainment and food... when it's gone, it's gone.
Don't forget to keep your receipts. It'll help you know where each dollar went.
And remember, you don't have to spend everything you earn. Take time to pay yourself and save a little from each paycheck.
If you save 10% of every check, 10% for charity and 80% for your living expenses you'll find there'll be enough money to go around.
A really good tip is to get yourself a calendar to write on. Write down your paydays and due dates for all your bills.
And finally...
3. Let Go of Old Habits
You've already eliminated alcohol and drugs from your expenses. Are there any other habits you could cut back from?
  • Do you smoke?
  • Do you eat out a lot or have fast food?
  • How many coffees do you buy?
  • How much do you spend on lottery?
Another bad habit that can hurt your income is credit. If you pay interest on debt, a significant part of your income isn't available to improve your standard of living or plan for your retirement.
The goal to become debt free is the single most important wealth building concept you can learn.
Being in early recovery is stressful enough. So, get a good job, stick to your budget and let go of your old habits and the months will get better.
And above all else... follow through.
If you or someone you know is looking for addiction support for families and friends of addicts visit to get them the help they need.
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