Personal Finances: How To Make The Most Out Of Your Money

Published on March 30, 2024

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Finances are on the top three list of worries and causes of stress for most adults, and with good reason. Handling personal finances can easily become a daunting task if you are not prepared or informed.

However, studies have shown that tackling personal finances head-on takes your stress and anxiety levels all the way down . But what are personal finances and what can you do to start getting a good handle on them? In this article, we will delve into this tricky, but fascinating world.


What is it and why does it matter?

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Personal finances are all about managing your money in a way that allows you to achieve your financial goals, ensuring a secure life. The process of handling your finances involves assessing your income, evaluating your expenses, and determining saving goals .

Not only does managing your money help with anxiety and stress, but it also secures your life making you feel independent and determined. Considering we are constantly making financial decisions, it seems only logical to learn how to do so accordingly, and here are some tips to help you achieve it.


Craft a budget that works for you


This is the first step to successfully get your finances back on track. Budgeting involves assessing your income in order to spend what you need , never more than what you get.

To craft a budget, you need to establish how much your salary is, how much money you need to spend on fixed and variable expenses, and how much you wish to set aside for savings and investing. The budget will be your roadmap for financial decision-making and it will foster disciplined spending habits.

You can use a notebook, an Excel spreadsheet, or a mobile app, whatever works for you.


Set realistic financial goals

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It doesn’t matter how much money you make, if you don’t have a clear goal, you will never make the most out of your money.

Consider setting realistic goals , buying a house in two months won’t be possible unless you are Tesla’s CEO.

Moreover, financial goals will be determined by not only the amount of money you make but also the stage of personal finances you are in. For example, if you are taking your first steps, your goal could be to save 20% of your income or create an emergency fund. But if you are an expert on the topic, you might set a big purchase as a goal or a riskier investment.


Always prioritize your emergency fund

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We all go through unforeseen circumstances, the car breaks down, our computer needs renewal, or we might even get fired and lose our income. Unpredictable things happen, even if we don’t want them to. And if you are not financially stable, they can quickly derail you.

Getting a good handle on personal finances gets you ahead in the game. When you have a budget and an emergency fund, they are easier to get over with. Ideally, an emergency fund should consist of three to six months’ worth of living expenses which can be used to support you during financial setbacks.

Remember, whenever you make use of the emergency fund, your first goal has to be to earn that money back.


Minimize debt

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Depending on where you are financially, this could actually be your first goal. Saving can never be a realistic goal if you are drowning in overdue bills, unpaid credit cards, or student loans.

Of course, some debt is unavoidable, but the bottom line is that debt cannot control your life . Prioritize paying off your debts, especially high-interest ones, and avoid accumulating additional ones whenever possible.

If you owe a large amount of debt, allocate a specific percentage of your income and make this a category within your budget.


Follow the 50/30/20 rule

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Remember that fixed expenses involve rent, car maintenance, and utilities such as electricity, water, internet, and phone plans. On the other hand, variable expenses include things like food, clothes, and more. Ideally, you should follow the 50/30/20 rule .

Let’s break it down: 50% of your monthly income should go to fixed and variable expenses, that is, rent, bills, groceries, etc. 30% of it should go to savings and emergency funds, while only 20% of your income should be allocated to non-essential expenses like clothes, dinners out, or concerts.


Reduce unnecessary expenses

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Reviewing your finances is a process similar to standing in front of your closet a going through a thorough discarding session. Why would you keep paying for that streaming platform you never watch?

After you have developed the habit of keeping track of your expenses, you will notice you have been spending money on things you don’t want, need, or worse, you didn’t even know about.

Identify which areas in your budget can be reduced or eliminated while maintaining your lifestyle standards, and cut back on those expenses.


Pursue Additional Income Opportunities

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Whether you need it or wish to increase your savings, side-job opportunities are always a good option , especially when they are not time-consuming. Additional earnings will allow you to accelerate your progress toward specific financial goals and provide you with a sense of security.

Now, just as your goals, side hustles need to be realistic in teams of adaptability to your main source of income and your lifestyle. And remember you might need to develop or leverage your skills and interests to do so.


Automate financial processes

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Simplify your financial management by automating routine tasks such as bill payments, savings contributions, and investment transfers. This will benefit you in three different ways .

First and foremost, automation reduces the risk of missed payments and debt generation. On the other hand, you will meet your goals without even noticing, simplifying the whole process. Thirdly, you won’t be tempted to re-allocate money to unnecessary purchases and this will unconsciously strengthen your spending habits.


Explore investment opportunities

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Long-term financial growth and wealth accumulation can never be achieved without investigation. Education will also help you understand which opportunities are available for you, the level of risk, and the profit possibilities.

Ideally, after accommodating your finances, you should be devoted to diversifying your investment portfolio to mitigate risk and maximize returns over time. When done correctly, and with the help of a guide if necessary, you might even be able to make a living out of your passive income.


Educate yourself

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Just like you took time to read this article, personal finances are a never-ending learning process . In the modern world, saving needs, investment opportunities and economic politics are always changing.

You should stay updated on topics such as market trends, macroeconomic politics that could affect your money, and more. As we said, the world of finances is as big as it gets, you should invest time, energy, and money in trying to enhance your skills and personal finance practices. Consider reading newsletters, taking online workshops, or reading online resources.


10 Outer Space Facts That Will Blow Your Mind

Published on March 30, 2024

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Exploring our surroundings is part of human nature . Thus, humankind has explored the heights of mountains and the depths of oceans. But since our hunger for knowledge is boundless, our curiosity extends to outer space, too.

The vastness and beauty of space leave us breathless, and while we've been studying it for ages, there is still so much we don't know about it.

Luckily, there are some things we do know. In this article, we'll tell you 10 amazing facts you probably didn't know about outer space!


Mars has a volcano larger than Mount Everest

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Olympus Mons is its name, and it is almost three times bigger than our Everest .

As you probably already know, Everest is the highest mountain on Earth, standing an astounding 5.5 miles above sea level. Huge, right? But wait, Everest looks like a baby compared to the dimensions of Olympus Mons.

At an impressive 13.6 miles in height and some 435 miles across , this Martian giant claims the title of the largest known volcano in our Solar System .

It is located in the Tharsis Montes, a volcanic region in Mars' western hemisphere, and the crater at its summit****is no small feat either, measuring about 53 miles in diameter !


Moonwalkers' footprints will remain there for millions of years

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Weather conditions or other people's footsteps will surely erase the prints you once left on the beach. Footprints on Earth can be ephemeral, but the same is not true on the Moon.

Did you know that the step marks left by astronauts who walked on the Moon more than 50 years ago are still there? And they will likely remain for millions of years.

While this may seem impossible to believe, it is true thanks to the Moon's unique conditions. Although some properties of the Moon could indeed alter its surface, their effect has proven to be very slight. With no rain or wind to erase them, the human footprints left there can still be seen.


When you look at the stars you see the past

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Have you ever dreamed of time travel ? So do we! Whether to fix past mistakes or to take a walk through history, the desire to travel back in time is universal.

Although using a time machine is not (yet) possible, there is an alternative: looking at the night sky. Yes, it's that simple.

Given the vast distances, light from the stars takes years to reach us. So, when you look at the stars, you are actually seeing what they looked like many years ago.

Do you wonder if that star still exists? Well, it's a mystery.


Our galaxy will collide with another

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Let's talk about fates. Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is destined to collide with our neighbor, the Andromeda galaxy .

Of course, there will be chaos, but although this sounds like a tragedy, the merge of these two will lead to the emergence of a new and more complex galaxy .

Anyway, this will happen in about 4 billion years . It's not something that should stress you out.


A day is longer than a year on Venus

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A place where a day lasts longer than a year : This fact may seem crazy, but let's examine it in detail.

For a planet, a year is the time it takes to complete one revolution around the Sun. In contrast, day is the time it takes for a planet to make one complete rotation about its axis.

Venus not only rotates in the opposite direction of Earth but also does so at a relatively slow pace. Venus takes 243 Earth days to rotate on its axis . On the other hand, it takes 225 Earth days to go around the Sun. That is, it takes longer to complete a day than a year.

Fun fact: as the planet rotates backward, the Sun rises in the west and sets in the east there.


Mars has bluish sunsets

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Speaking of crazy sunsets, this one will blow your mind.

Ah, nothing like watching a beautiful sunset, right? Those orange, red, and even pink shades have moved poets and inspired artists since ancient times.

But if we lived on Mars, things would turn a little blue. According to NASA, a sunset on the Red Planet would appear bluish to the human eye , thanks to its atmosphere, which is dominated by large dust particles. These particles filter out the Sun's red light, allowing the blues to make their way into our sight.


Neptune has completed only one orbit around the Sun since 1846

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Neptune is more than 30 times as far from the Sun as Earth. In fact, it is the farthest planet from the Sun , and, unlike Venus, its days are much (much) shorter than its years. A day on Neptune lasts about 16 Earth hours, while a year on this ice giant takes 165 Earth years!

That's right, cold Neptune has only gone around the Sun once since its discovery in 1846.

Next time you find yourself stressing about taking too long to complete a task, just think of Neptune. Suddenly, you are not doing so badly, right?


The Moon is lemon-shaped

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From Earth, we see the Moon as this beautiful, luminous sphere that understands our night sorrows, but its reality is quite different.

In fact, our Moon not only has no light of its own, but it is not even a sphere , at least not a perfect one.

You can grab a rubber ball and gently squeeze its opposite sides to get a rough idea of the Moon's shape . Another way to picture its figure is to look at a lemon, with its irregularities and all.

Let's not leave aside the lesson: its imperfection does not make it any less beautiful.


The Moon is moving away

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We have another piece of news about the Moon : it is moving away from us. The good part is that it is not that determined to leave us since it is moving only 1.5 inches per year .

Currently, the space between our planet and the Moon could fit about 30 Earths, which is already a lot. But it seems that our Moon needs more room.

The Moon's gradual receding from the Earth happens due to gravitational interactions between the two celestial bodies. When this occurs, the Earth's rotation slows down, and the Moon moves into a more distant orbit.


Saturn has more than 100 moons

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Imagine looking up at the night sky and seeing not one but two moons. It would be moving, wouldn't it? Now, if you increase the number to five or ten moons, things can start to look a little weird.

Jupiter has 95 moons, which already seems overwhelming. But Saturn beats it by far, with 145 moons discovered so far around the planet.

With this number, Saturn has more moons than all the other planets in the Solar System combined!

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