July 1 2024

Financial wellbeing, the green smoothie for your money

Are you looking to improve your overall wellness? Time to dust off the gym passes, reorganise the pantry and download that meditation podcast. But while you’re busy focusing on your mental and physical health, don’t forget the third aspect of the wellness trifecta – financial wellness.
Piggy Bank

What is financial wellness?

Financial wellbeing is kind of like a green juice for your finances.

It’s all about establishing a better relationship with money and improving the overall health of your finances. Working on your financial wellbeing may mean you’ll be better placed to handle emergencies, achieve your goals, and even indulge a little. Leaving you more confident, less stressed, and ultimately feeling good.

Like any health plan, knowing where to begin can be a bit overwhelming. So, we’ve put together some handy tips to help you get started, whatever your financial situation.

Three ways to achieve financial wellness.

1. Budget like a boss

Creating a budget may not be first on your bucket list but it’s an essential first step to achieving financial wellness. Follow these steps to boss your budget and master money mindfulness.

Calculate your income. This is all the money that comes into your accounts – how much and how often (weekly, fortnightly, monthly).

Work out your expenses. These can be fixed expenses (rent, bills, groceries, transport etc.), debt expenses (credit cards, mortgages, and loans for example) or unexpected expenses (things like car repairs, medical or vet costs).

Set some spending limits. Once you’ve worked out the money coming in and out of your accounts, you’ll be able to see what’s left over. Give yourself a spending limit and figure out how much you could squirrel away for a rainy day.

Modify as you go. Let’s face it, if the last two years have told us anything it’s that life happens, and things can change quickly. Don’t be hard on yourself if that happens, just modify your budget, and adjust it as needed.

Money tips:
  • Check your bank statements to make sure you don’t miss any hidden expenses.
  • It’s also a good idea to think about all your direct debits like Netflix, Spotify or gym memberships. Do you really use all these services?
  • Check out the budget template on MoneySmart. It’ll save you having to create one from scratch.
2. Let’s do some future gazing

We know us super folk always say this, but the things you do today could make a difference to all your tomorrows. So, spare some time to think about your super and your financial future.

Soup up your super. If you’re in the position to do so, you can boost your super fund by regularly adding a little extra cash. There are a few ways you can do this:

- Before tax contribution: Check with your employer to see if you can arrange to have a portion of your salary sent directly to your super fund before tax (also known as salary sacrifice).

- After tax contribution: This allows you to personally deposit your money (after tax) to your super fund. Best of all, if you are a Rest member you can do this easily in the Rest App.

- Government co-contribution: If you earn $60,400 a year or less, you could be eligible for a co-contribution from the government to help boost your super fund. Terms and conditions apply.

Remember: The government limits how much you can contribute. If you contribute too much, you may have to pay extra tax.

Get into your first home sooner. Did you know you can use your super to help save for your first home? You can read more about the government's First Home Super Saver Scheme here.

Get your super on track in the Rest App

Rest members can make the most of their super in the Rest App. The ‘Get your super on track’ feature can help with things like combining your super and checking any insurance and investments. Best of all you can tick them off as you go.

3. Set some goals

Set yourself some financial goals to keep yourself accountable, track your progress and give you that well deserved endorphin rush.

Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Decide what you’re saving for. Write down your savings goals and stick them on the fridge. That way you can always see them and reflect on them.

Make your goals SMART. That’s Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely.

Stick with it. Fight through the frugal fatigue by monitoring your progress and revisiting your end goal. You could even gamify the process with little rewards for each milestone you hit.

Want to learn more?