Many people dream of a life of wealth and riches, or even just of being financially comfortable and having enough. Their reality is often far different; a life where they feel perpetually skint, poor or hard-up for money. They have less money than they need and certainly less than they would like to have.
In my life I have been skint and rich. I’ve suffered a lack of money, and I’ve also been wealthy. Having experienced life at both ends of the spectrum, I know which one I prefer.
I know the feeling of living from one pay check to the next when there are always more bills to pay than there is money available to pay them. To escape this situation can seem an impossibility.
If this describes your situation, you don’t have to despair or feel like you can’t achieve the financial freedom and comfort that you crave. The first priority is to resolve your situation by understanding why you are short of money, taking control and then changing things.
In this article I’ve shared ten reasons that are likely to have brought you to this point in your life. If you’re skint, one or more of these may help to explain why.
1. You haven’t learned about money due to the environment you live in
I believe there’s a difference between skint and poor and this is an important distinction to make. When someone is raised in poverty, in an environment within which money and opportunities for learning about it are scarce, they may not have learned how to make, manage and master money. They may have grown up in a third-world country where there isn’t Internet access, sanitation or the facilities that we take for granted. They may live in deprived parts of the western world. Either way, they’ve become used to living without enough money. Someone who has existed in this setting is what I would describe as poor.
I define someone as skint if they could in theory have learned about money in that they’ve lived in an environment with access to information via the Internet, however they’ve still not lived around or learnt about money. In either case, they have been deprived of the opportunity to learn due to their environment.
2. You haven’t had the right financial education
In common with reason number 1, if you’re skint because of poor financial education it’s not necessarily your fault, but it’s still a factor for many who find themselves skint or poor. Financial education isn’t part of what we are taught in schools. We’re not educated from an early age in how to make, manage and master money and it’s no surprise then that so many struggle with the various aspects of money, and find themselves skint in adult life.
If this is the case for you, it doesn’t mean you should be labelled a victim or that you can’t change your situation. There is always time to learn and to change your life.
Now we move onto the reasons that are within your control. If you’ve fallen foul of some of these and find yourself feeling skint or that money is scarce, these could help to explain why.
3. Money isn’t significantly important to you
If this is the case, then it’s likely that you’ve been spending your money self-indulgently on things that make you feel good. This has likely come at the expense of learning about earning, saving and investing money and looking at building businesses that could ultimately generate money for you.
Your focus has been upon the things that cost you money rather than the things that make you money. Once you turn this around, you have a chance to see the results reflected in your income and in the money flowing into your life.
4. You haven’t yet found the right business model
You may have tried a business model and found that it didn’t work or that it didn’t fit with your goals or personality. Perhaps you didn’t give it long enough and gave up when you’d incurred the costs but before you received any of the benefits.
It could be that your chosen business model equates to a lower-paid job that you feel stuck in. To escape this lower-paid job you may need to develop skills and experience to move up to a higher-paid job, but for as long as you are going through this process you may feel stuck and skint at the same time. In situations like this it’s important to commit and persist for as long as it takes to make it work. Ultimately you’ll make the shift that will then bring in the extra income.
5. You’re not prepared to take the necessary risk
If you are too risk-averse and allow fear and feelings of inadequacy or doubt to guide you then you’ll remain stuck in a rut, feeling skint and unwilling to make the moves that could ultimately increase your income. Somebody stuck in a £30k per year job may doubt their worthiness for a £100k job, and so their fear and insecurity prevents them from even taking a chance and applying for it.
You have to take progressively greater risks over time, if you want to make more money. That isn’t to say you should be careless, but calculated risks are required throughout life to make gains, especially if you want to stop feeling skint and start feeling wealthy.
“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life”
6. You don’t embrace sales and marketing
No matter the business model you are operating, sales and marketing plays an essential part in advancing your position and bringing in the money. In virtually every business model, whether you run a business or work as an employee, sales and marketing is the activity that will bring in money if done well, and prevent money from coming your way if done poorly.
The essential techniques of selling your product or service, telling your story, broadcasting your mission and evangelising about what you have to offer are vital if you’re going to generate money from what you do. Marketing prompts interest-in and demand-for your product or service, and both are vital to open the dam and stimulate the flow of money to you.
I’ve known some great and talented coaches, trainers and artists who have invested thousands in developing their skills and mastering their craft and yet their lack of interest or ability in sales and marketing prevents them from making a living. Don’t let apathy for sales and marketing be a reason for remaining skint.
7. You spend more than you earn
This is the most solid and time-tested fundamental of money; if you spend more than you earn you’ll end up skint, and if you earn more than you spend you’ll build wealth. Compounding applies in either case and will make investments grow almost exponentially, just as it makes debts grow too.
If you’ve got a history of spending more than you earn, the first step is to take control of the situation and stop doing it!
“Do not save what is left after spending. Spend what is left after saving.”
8. You don’t take responsibility for your actions and situation
When things aren’t as we’d like, it’s tempting to blame other people, the environment, the economy, the government, circumstances or whatever else for our situation. If you are constantly skint, it’s likely that the main reasons is you and the things you’ve done, the way you’re living and decisions you’ve taken.
Until you take responsibility and own the problem, you simply can’t take control of the situation. Until you take control, you can’t make it change.
Stop blaming external factors and take responsibility for where you are.
9. You are envious and jealous of the rich and successful
If you are envious, jealous or simply dislike those who are rich then it’s probable that you actually dislike that they have the wealth that you want, and you dislike that you aren’t rich.
It’s common to criticise the wealthy, to assume that they’ve come by money easily, through luck, an inheritance or some other means that makes them unworthy of it. Bear in mind that your feelings are all based on assumptions that are likely to be unfounded and unfair.
Instead of feeling envy or jealousy, it would serve you better to seek inspiration and motivation from these people who have demonstrated through time, effort and experience that wealth can be gained in an honourable way. Lose your judgments about them and instead seek to learn from them.
10. You’re on the right path, but just need to give it more time
The final reason you may feel skint is that you’re doing the right things, working hard at the business model and on the right path, but you just need to have a little patience and persistence. You may have given it six months or a year, and it’s going to take two years or five years, provided you just commit and keep working at it!
“Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success”
If you find yourself at times feeling skint, and you can relate to any of these reasons then perhaps that’s a good prompt to try and fix them by educating yourself accordingly.
I’m passionate about helping people to become more financially educated and financially free and it’s one of my life’s missions to do that through the businesses I own and the services I provide. There are many sources of help, information and guidance out there including my podcast ‘Money’ which will help you to understand the skills and mind-set required to make, manage and master money. These apply whether you’re looking to build and grow your business as much as if you feel skint and want instead to feel wealthy or financially free.
Being skint is temporary and it can be changed if you put your mind to it and take control.