Most of the people don’t find the time for their personal finance. Surprisingly, I have seen those people who are worked in our Finance and Accounts department; even they are not serious about it as they believe they don’t have time, it is real for them. They have plenty of valid reasons to prove that they really don’t have time. People can’t seem to find an un-interrupted half-hour during which they can work on their personal finance in an entire month, for some an entire year. Sounds familiar?

If you look around, you are connected to everything that can help you elevate your financial life. It’s all here. It’s all available. A few keystrokes away.

The so called ‘busy’ people have no time for their personal finance but they somehow find time to be on chats, cricket, and other media sites. I always told people, here you are wasting your time in small instalments and you are not even aware of it.

It’s time to identify such unproductive activates and take action with regard to your financial life. A lot of what you do with your time has a direct connection with what you do with your money.

Typical Scenario

Then somewhere at the end of the year, around February, when they receive an e-mail from their employers requesting them to submit their documents for tax savings, they wake up and remember their financial lives. But wait, it just makes them stir a little, it does not lead them to take any action, because the deadline is still 10 long days away! If the 25th February is the last date for submission of documents, most people start collecting their documents and arranging rent receipts bills, 80C documents etc. only on the 24th February. And some even call agents because now they want to “invest”. Can you imagine the scenario? It’s actually come to a situation wherein “Giving proof of investments” is much more important than “Making sensible financial decisions.” It’s too late plan for things! Sound familiar!

Now all mutual funds and ULIP agents etc. are ready to take charge and sell you anything and everything which can save your tax. That’s exactly what many people want. At the last moment, they have no choice but to invest, so that they can “save tax”. I can’t imagine a scenario where someone says, “Wait a minute, let me just pay the tax and leave my finances the way they are because it’s better to not get into something which I don’t need”. To many, such person would appear extremely idiotic and might even become the news of the day! Read: Tax saving is not Tax Planning!

Waiting for “urgency”

Everything “just happens”. Things are moving on each passing day in our financial lives too. We buy an arbitrary insurance policy for the sake of tax savings. When we have to near financial goal like child’s education, or a car or house, it is then that we start thinking about how to generate the required money by sifting through our existing investments. We break FDs, withdraw cash from banks, redeem some part of mutual fund holdings and something even go in for a personal loan from their company or banks, if possible if things still do not fall into place, we just postpone the whole goal itself by a couple of years.

But all this leads to unnecessary stress. In today’s world, where life has become nothing beyond going from home to the office and back, we just ignore our financial life. We have started taking actions in our financial life only when we reach in that the stage of “urgency or emergency”. Sounds familiar?

Then we can say in desi language as “Akal badam khane se nahin aathi, balike thhokar khane se aathi hai”. It’s would be seemed true for those who are procrastinating in their financial life.

A lot of people procrastinate, some by choice and some due to ignorance. They always think that they have always tomorrow to do action for this.

Important Tasks

An important principal of time management suggests that we must take sure that we complete the important tasks, which are still not urgent, rather than delaying them. We have many things in our financial life which are very important but not “urgent”. So we do what we are best at: We postpone them! This could be purchasing term insurance, starting an SIP, making 80C investments, filing tax returns etc.  All these tasks are important but not urgent until some point of time. Once they become extremely urgent, that’s the time we wake up and take action. It’s very obvious that you cannot pay much attention to detail or undertake thorough research when you have reached the state of “urgency”.

Unless you have a “want-to” attitude towards changing your financial life, things will not change drastically. You are just expecting to have an awesome financial life by chance. It will never happen without your help but it could be by your choice. Read :Change Attitude towards your Financial Life!

Conquer  procrastination

The good news is that you can win your war against procrastination; it’s possible. You can always start small; taking small actions one at a time. Most of the time your mind makes all your personal finance tasks looks big and scary. We think of numbers and complicated calculations; we think of graphs and pie-charts when it comes to personal finance. So we procrastinate. Personal finance is not about numbers, it is about YOU and the relationship you share with money!

When we imagine creating a personal finance to-do list, the longer we push it into the future, the more frightening it appears in magnitude. Which financial planner should you trust? How can you find the right products? You can see that objects in the mirror of the future always appear larger than they really are. This is a time to take little actions. Only then will they seem like fun further than chore. When we start seeing personal finance as a game, we start enjoying the process and then it’s no wonder that you stop procrastinating!

Conclusion

Here, ‘ACTION’ is the ultimate answer.

Make small promises to yourself regarding how you will handle your financial life. Set aside just 1 hour this coming Sunday, after lunch, to have a look at your policies, investments, financial goals in life… and see if you are on the right track or not.

Consider paying for advice as an investment, rather than just another monthly expense. Get the best advice at the best price.

Just start with one thing… you know what it is… it’s the thing you’re thinking about right now.

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Suresh Kumar Narula

SEBI Investment Advisor, Founder & Principal Financial Planner at Prudent Financial Planners
Suresh K Narula is founder and Principal Financial Planner at Prudent Financial Planners. He has earned the professional CERITIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and got registered with SEBI as Investment Advisor. He writes on personal and financial planning articles and got published in Dainik Bhaskar, Business Bhaskar and The Financial Planner's Guild, India. He is also a member of Financial Planner's Guild India ( An association of practicing SEBI registered Investment advisers) to create awareness about Financial Planning in general public, promote professional excellence and ensure high quality practice standards. Suresh received his an M.com from Himachal Pardesh University and an MFC from Punjab University, Chandigarh. He can be reached at info@prudentfp.in
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