Let’s Talk About Money

I’ve been talking money with some clients this week. Isn’t money the biggest mind monkey of all? There are coaches who have made an entire business from helping women with their relationship with money…

Some of us, it seems are bloody brilliant with money. My mum was one of them. She managed to keep and feed a family of 6 on virtually nothing and I don’t ever remember even being aware that we had so little. I see women who have neat little bundles of receipts and log them in notebooks. I see women who religiously sit down once a week to do their books. Mostly however, I see women for whom money is yet another thing to ignore when it gets tough. As long as we small business owners can keep some cash flowing, we can wing it, right?

I have been so useless with money in the past, that when I felt that I couldn’t afford someone to keep my books for me, I solved it by just not keeping any records at all! You can imagine how much that ended up costing me when HMRC wanted their information. I’ve had an interesting relationship with money in my life so far. I’ve had times where I’ve had lots of it and times when I have had so little I’ve laid awake at night wondering how I was going to survive the month. Since I became a single mum at the end of 2008, I’ve found that maintaining control and being organised about money even though it doesn’t come easily to me is the best way to sleep well.

From the conversations I’ve had, I believe that most women’s problem with money is that they find the marshalling of it time-consuming and unpleasant. I certainly do and when I talk to others about it, they feel the same. We have this innate belief that earning and dealing with money is (or should be) very hard and we work like stink to make it as difficult as possible.

For this week’s blog post, I thought I would tell you about 3 apps that I use to help me marshal my income and outgoings so that I can stay on top of the boring stuff.

Mileage

I hate recording miles, yet I travel many of them each year. My old habit was to not record it, and then every six months I’d sit down and go through my diary and with the aid of Google maps, work out how far I’d travelled. It drove me mental, yet somehow I could never remember to just write down my mileage.

Now I don’t have to do that because I have a fabulous app called MileIQ that just knows where I am and when I’ve stopped. Every now and again I go into the app and I swipe each journey, right for business, left for personal (kind of
Tinder for journeys!). The app even creates reports for me that I send to my bookkeeper. I no longer get cross with myself for not recording mileage. Perfect!

I no longer get cross with myself for not recording mileage, because I am recording it without thinking about it. Perfect!

Receipts

The Purse Of A Fabulous SaleswomanAnother place where I find that we can falter, is in the recording of receipts. Hands up if you’ve ever had a
whole plastic carrier full of receipts? (I see you!!) There are loads of receipt apps out there and I’ve tried them all, My favourite is 1Tap Receipt. I like it because it’s a no-brainer. You take a picture of your receipt, tag it with whatever it was for and then bin the receipt. The app sorts out the rest. Perfect!

Income Recording

I find that one way to help with the flow of money inwards (rather than it flowing out of one’s account) is to record every single little thing that comes in, whatever form it takes. If I get a given a gift (a coaching session, or a sample of something perhaps) I record a value for it. I also record monetary income and I do it all via yet another app.

The Lucky Bee app (iTunes link – not sure if it’s available on Android) allows you to set a target each month and then
record every single bit of income, monetary or otherwise. It’s really simple to use and I love, love, love it. I recommend it lots! The purpose behind it is to help you recognise how much you’re earning, even when it feels like you’re not. The first time I ever used this app, I realised that I had brou
ght in more than £6,000 in a month, yet I couldn’t work out where it was (or where it had gone!). This app made me a whole lot more aware of my ‘money in’ situation!

What do you use to help make the money flow more easily? Let me know in the comments below – I love time/effort saving apps.