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A Great Guide to Organizing Your Finances

There's perhaps no type of disorganization that's more stressful than the financial kind. Feeling like you're out of touch with your money--how much of it you have, how much of it you owe, what your bank and brokerage and retirement accounts are doing--can be unsettling at best, and sometimes downright terrifying. It follows, then, that getting your finances in order can go a long way toward making you feel more in control.

But that kind of organization can be a big job, especially if you're starting from what feels like sheer money-related chaos. The good news is that there's a guide for those of us determined to forge a better relationship with our cash: One Year to an Organized Financial Life, by Regina Leeds and Russell Wild. Here's what I liked about the book, and why I think it's a worthwhile addition to your bookshelves.

What It's Like
As the title suggests, One Year to an Organized Financial Life is a year-long approach to getting more in touch with and more control over your money. The book is divided into months, with a different area of focus for each month (January's is Take Control, for example, while July's is Make Long-Range Financial Plan). Within the chapter, there's a habit of the month, a tool of the month, and a separate mini project for each week, designed to help you accomplish the month's overall goal.

Sprinkled throughout the book are sidebar tips on everything from when to get the best deals on essentials throughout the year to how to cut down on things like catalog clutter and unwanted credit card solicitations.

There's also a thorough list of resources at the end of the book, including recommendations on finding financial planning and organizing help.

Why It Gets My Thumbs-Up


A Few Small Downsides

I'm a firm believer in the benefits of having someone to guide you through the process of getting organized, especially when that process involves a topic as complex as money, and I enthusiastically believe that One Year to an Organized Financial Life is a worthwhile guide.


[Note: I reviewed a copy of this book sent to me, at no charge, by the publisher.]

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Content copyright © 2013 by Emily Wilska. All rights reserved.
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