Position yourself financially speaking

7:12 PM, Mar 15, 2011   |    comments
Position yourself financially speaking
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GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. -- I played college basketball at the University of North Dakota. I had to play a "big-man" position, meaning a forward or center, by default. Dribbling and shooting were not my strengths, so playing the post was my only option.   

The problem is that I'm only 6-6, which may sound tall. But I was one of the smallest post-players in the league. Rarely did I guard opponents shorter and/or smaller than me. The only reason I was able to play at that level is because I had good positioning.

Before the ball would even cross half-court, I would be working on getting my defender off the block so I was in a position to get the ball or rebound. If I waited until the ball was in my area to get my much larger competitor out of the way, I was toast. Getting good position started long before the actual play occurred.

Personal finances operate under the same concept. Make good decisions with money NOW to put yourself in a good position later.  Plan as if something is GOING to go wrong. I'm not saying you should be an eternal pessimist constantly worrying about life's worst-case scenario. But, be a realist. Life happens! The water heater may need to be replaced, your car could need repair, little Johnny might need braces or you could lose your job. Take this into consideration, because it always seems like things go wrong when you're least prepared for them.

Debt will ALWAYS put you out of position. That's the problem with debt. If you had the money in the first place you wouldn't need to put on credit. And until that loan or line of credit is paid off, you're living life on the edge...out of position. That "easy-to-make payment" might possibly be THAT DAY. But as soon as life happens, you're WAY out of position. Don't do that to yourself!

Being in good position opens the door to make SMART purchases. Just recently a deal on a home heating/cooling system came up. My wife and I were planning on replacing ours sometime next year or the year after. However, this off-season deal came up, so we grabbed it! Why? It's because we were in position.

Being in good position prepares you to take advantage of open doors.  Before our move to KARE 11, my wife and I were living in Arizona in beautiful position. We had no debt, plenty of cash and weren't strapped down with a heavy mortgage. Our goal was to make it back to Minnesota, eventually. We didn't know how or when it was going to happen. But we knew we needed to be ready. So, when KARE11 came calling, we were able to JUMP at the opportunity.

Looking to change jobs, buy a home, or retire someday?  Make sure you are methodically and intentionally putting yourself in position TODAY. Get out of debt and save for emergencies! Don't live life out of position any longer! 

(Copyright 2011 KARE. All rights reserved)

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