Hi. It’s the 5th of the month. As in, it’s August 5th. Also, as in, it’s the Financial Fifth. It’s really nice how you can capitalize words and they become important. You may or may not (I don’t know your life) have heard me talk about the Financial Fifth before. It’s a thing. I made it up, but for a very good reason. The Financial Fifth is the solution to all the bad money conversations you’ve ever had. No more being surprised by out of control expense categories. No more being on different pages about financial goals. The Financial Fifth, aka the 5th of every month, is now your money conversation day. Or if you’re single, the day you talk to yourself about money. This is the day you review the past month to see what you did right and what you did wrong. This is when you set goals and challenges for yourself. If you do it right, it shouldn’t take very long and it should be the only money conversation you need to have all month.
Because I want to help you get started on your first Financial Fifth, here is a tip in video form for your viewing pleasure:
In the last week I did something new in my financial life. I made the decision to split my direct deposit paycheck into two accounts. Previously, my entire paycheck went into one account. From there I parsed it out to where it should go. Now my paycheck gets split between my normal account and my savings account. This means what goes into my main account is my spending balance. I’ve already saved what I need to save. All this before I even had a chance to touch the money. If you’re terrible at saving or you “forget” to save or you wait to save what’s left over at the end of a pay period, this is the plan for you. This is a foolproof way to get money flowing into your savings.
I’ll be honest though, I got paid yesterday and it hurt to see the new amount going into my main account. Prepare yourself for this. Give it a few pay pay cycles though. You’ll adjust. I’ll adjust too. The crazy part about me being surprised by the amount is I made that exact transaction to savings immediately after I got paid anyway, it’s really no different. It’s a mental roadblock to get over.
Today during your monthly money conversation discuss what amount you want to go into what account and talk to your employer about making the switch.
Peter Dunn a.k.a. Pete the Planner® is an award-winning financial mind and a former comedian. He’s a USA TODAY columnist, author of ten books, and is the host of the popular radio show and podcast, The Pete the Planner Show. Pete is considered one of the foremost experts on financial wellness in the world, but he’s just as likely to talk your ear off about bass fishing.