By JASON BUTLER
We all know people who never seem to learn from their past mistakes. Whether it’s choosing unsuitable romantic partners and suffering emotional heartache, doing the wrong job and not being happy or not controlling spending and failing to build financial resources, we all make mistakes. There is no shame in making mistakes, as long as you learn from them.
I mentioned in a recent Money Minute video the importance of making a plan — however simple or imperfect it might be — but life experience has taught me to always do two more things:
- Plan for the worst and hope for the best; and
- Always have a plan B (and ideally a plan C).
You can’t control how things like the COVID-19 pandemic turns out, but you can control how you react to associated events, including your finances.
You can throw your hands in the air and tell yourself it’s hopeless or sit down and look at your current financial reality and work out how bad it really is.
You can tell everyone it isn’t fair and that something must be done (by someone else), or you can work with what you have and what you know so far, perhaps by doing a spending audit to find savings and making a claim for state benefits to ease cashflow.
But most of all use the current situation to take a good hard look at your financial situation and learn what you would have done differently in the past, had you known this crisis was coming.
Who knows, you might come out of this being even better with your money and happier with your life?
PS My latest Money Minute video below also covers the importance of learning from mistakes:
JASON BUTLER is a former financial adviser, based in Suffolk. He is a personal finance columnist for the Financial Times, and is Head of Financial Education at Salary Finance. You can find out more about him on his website.
If you’re interested in reading more from Jason, here are a few of the other articles he’s contributed to TEBI:
What does your financial wellbeing look like?
Learn to embrace the challenges
Beware investing in serviced accommodation
Time to face up to your money mistakes