How to use your budget as your financial GPS

A few weeks ago I drove to Peoria, IL for a leadership conference with some business partners and friends. From Germantown, MD, it is a solid twelve hours drive. We decided to leave at ten o’clock in the evening and drive through the night. We had a total of four cars so it made sense to caravan to be safe and stay together. Michael J. in the Honda Pilot followed its integrated GPS. In the Honda …, Jim used the app Waze and finally, the two other vehicles which included mine utilized Google Maps. For the majority of the trip, we stayed together keeping the same pace. Then the sun came up, it was seven o’clock and you guessed it, rush hour traffic began. If you have ever used the application Google Maps, you know that it alerts you when there are alternative routes which avoid traffic and reduce the duration of the trip. That’s exactly what happened and I deciding to take my chances. The issue was that not all cars were using Google Maps and for a period of twenty minutes or so, the caravan was broken. I was miles ahead of everybody and ended up having to wait on the shoulder of the highway to allow them to catch up.

Why am I telling you this anecdote? Your written, organized and detailed budget as shown in my book Money-Smart Millennials is your ‘Google Maps’ when it comes to your finances.

  • First, it determines your current itinerary. How are you spending your money today? How much do you bring in and how much do you spend? What are your expenses? When do you get paid and how does it affect your ability to pay your bills on time? Do you make enough money to sustain your lifestyle? Establishing your budget allows you to respond to these questions confidently.
  • Second, Google Maps avoids traffic and delays. Similarly your budget helps you make the necessary alterations in your finances. What is your goal? Is it saving two thousand dollars every month? Is it increasing the monthly payment on your credit card? Is it reducing your eating out expenses? Is it giving more to the charity of your choice? Whatever it is, when you create your budget, you are able to identify where adjustments may need to be made to reach that destination (your goal).
  • Lastly, when you use Google Maps it gets you to your destination faster. Your budget is the first component of the strategy described in Money-Smart Millennials that propels you to your goal faster.

I wrote Money-Smart Millennials for you. I am so excited for you to discover the habits and the mindset I have adopted over the years which led me today to a stability I did not know before. From my success and failures, from my experience working in banking, from talking to hundreds of millennials, from countless discussions with my coaches and mentors, I have learned what it takes to be a financially stable millennial. It is your turn. Even if you are not a millennial, you will benefit from this book. Subscribe here or send an email to for questions. Then get your copy on Amazon. I cannot wait to hear from you, your thoughts, your questions and your suggestions.

Welcome! You are now on your journey to being a Money-Smart Millennial!


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