Happy November everyone! Not only is this month Financial Literacy Month (a personal finance blogger’s favourite month!), but this week in particular is Credit Education Week in Canada.
What is Credit Education Week you ask?
A decade ago, Credit Canada Debt Solutions and Capital One Canada came together to start Credit Education Week, with the goal of increasing financial literacy and credit education across the country. Over the last 10 years it has grown, and this year it features more than 170 financial education events across the country! You can learn where to find them at www.cewc.ca.
This Year’s Theme is Financial Wins!
Every year there’s a theme associated with Credit Education Week, and this year the theme is financial wins, encouraging Canadians to share the moments, big or small, where they took control of their financial situation, so that others can learn from their success!
This year’s theme focuses on the positive aspects of personal finance, since most of the time it’s the negative aspects that get the spotlight. Like how you should budget better, pay down your debt sooner and save more money. Yes, those are all important things to focus on, but they don’t leave a lot of room for patting yourself on the back when you do something good.
This theme is right up my alley too since my husband and I are putting more effort on focusing on the positive. We both tend to get a bit down when summer turns into fall. It could be the colder weather and shorter days, but whatever it is, it happens every year like clockwork. We didn’t want to get into our usual rut this year and instead decided to do something different to build each other up and motivate each other to keep on truckin’.
It’s All About Focusing on the Positive & Giving Yourself Some Credit
One big thing we did was buy a notebook to write in every night. Each of us writes down one good thing that happened to us or we did that day, and then we share it with the other. It’s a small and maybe even silly thing, but it’s actually incredibly powerful. It forces us to acknowledge how good life really is, even when we don’t feel like it.
The same goes for acknowledging your financial wins, even when you don’t feel like it because you’ve got a laundry list of other financial goals you’ve yet to accomplish. Oh I hear ya! I have so many goals, when I accomplish one of them, I rarely take the time to say “Good one Jessica!”
What Are Some of My Financial Wins?
As far as my big financial wins this year, I’d say buying my first place is right at the top. To me, I consider it a financial win because my husband and I did our research, spent years saving, and then made a calculated decision to buy. We didn’t buy too much house, we bought in an up-and-coming neighbourhood, we were able to put more than 20% down, and the purchase hasn’t affected our lifestyle that much besides us splitting our income differently.
Besides becoming a homeowner, if I’m to look back at my biggest financial wins to date, these are the 5 wins I’d like to share with you:
- Crushing my student debt in less than a year
- Paying for our wedding in cash
- Quitting my job to explore better opportunities in Toronto with my husband
- Going back to school twice (once for my digital marketing certificate, the second time for my financial counsellor program) and not having to take out any student loans
- Saving up enough to afford my bucket list trip to Paris for my 30th birthday
It looks like the big reason I achieved those financial wins was by being patient and organized, and making saving a priority in my life. Which makes sense since that’s exactly what Capital One Canada and Credit Canada Debt Solutions discovered in their Financial Wins survey for Credit Education Week.
What Are Some of Your Financial Wins?
But enough about me, I want to know about you! I want to know what some of your financial wins are! Take this as an opportunity to give yourself some credit and share how awesome you are.
Have you managed to put a little extra in savings every month? That’s amazing and you need to acknowledge that. Did you save 50% of your income for the past 3 months? That’s awesome and you should be proud of that! Have you managed to put away 6 months’ worth of your living expenses into your emergency fund? I’m gonna give you a virtual high-five right now!
Bonus: Take the Money-Smart Quiz!
Want to find out how smart you are with money? I’m sure you’re plenty smart, obviously, you’re on my blog right now for a start. But, it’s always fun to take a quiz to see what it says, am I right? Not to brag, but I got Valedictorian. Okay, that’s definitely a brag. Click here to take the Credit Education Week Money Smarts quiz and find out what you are!
Share your financial wins in the comments below and let the positivity flow!