How to increase your gap

The foundation of all financial success is built upon bringing in more money that you spend. If you don’t consistently have more money coming in that you have going out you will end up broke. Once you understand this, start to track your expenditure for a while you start to think about how you might expand your gap!

How do you increase your income and reduce your expenditure. Those are the two levers you have to pull. Bring more money in and stop money leaving your bank account quite as quickly as it has been

Most people / media / articles focus on spending less. This is important and powerful but it can be dwarfed by income generation. There is a floor to how much you can reduce your spending but there is NO ceiling to your earnings.

1. Increase your income

Firstly you have to believe you can increase your income. So many people are stuck earning what they earn and whenever I suggest asking for a raise, earning more they tell me why it is not possible.

You get to keep the limitations you fight for. I believe it is possible for you to earn more. Just this week a Rebel how watched the how to increase your income workshop messages to say she finally asked and get a 20% wage increase! Imagine what that would do for your gap!

There are so many ways to increase your income it is ridiculous. Here are a few ideas to get you going and some resources to help you start to work out how to earn a shed tonne more money! it never hurts to bring in a little bit more cash. Here are some initial ideas:

  1. Ask for a Raise – this is the one people forget to do. Work out your value to the organisation, get over the imposter syndrome and let’s ask for an increase in your salary
  2. Side-Hustle – Whether it’s selling your knitted ninja turtles or moonlighting as a karaoke DJ there has never been a better time to make money doing what you love! Watch Alan’s Side-Hustle workshop for more
  3. Career Switcheroo – Sometimes you can’t earn more where you are. That’s ok! maybe it is time to dive into a pool of new opportunities. Who knows, you might just earn more and have more fun.
  4. Consulting / contracting – Share your wisdom for a price. This is the one that helped Katie triple her salary and move us towards FI even faster!
  5. Value Virtuoso – This is the corner stone to all wealth. I truly believe that you can have anything you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want in life. Start to think about how you can deliver more for your customers, your boss, your company. Just always remember to ask for a raise as you deliver.
  6. Negotiation Ninja – everything in life is a negotiation. Asking for more time off, getting a raise, which movie you are going to watch tonight at the cinema with your friends. Learn negotiation skills and you will increase your value
  7. Sales Superstar – the more I learnt about sales, the more my income increased. People seem to think sales is a dirty word but in a world that tries to avoid it sales skills are becoming more and more valuable.
  8. Public Speaking Prodigy – This is the one that transformed Alan’s life completely. Learning how to public speak built my confidence, helped me get out of my shell and gave me a business. Warren Buffet says this is one fo the first skills you should develop!
  9. Skill Sharpening – I was given my first self-help book at age 21 and I have never looked back, reading more and more, developing skills and bettering myself. If you want to earn more, develop more skills. Pick up a self-development book today or learn a skill your business needs.
  10. Efficiency Expert – Streamline your life like a boss and watch the productivity (and cash) flow in. When I was 28 I got asked to run a time management course and that started me learning about productivity. Some people get more done in an hour than others do in a week. Imagine what that does for your income and job prospects!

Those are a few ideas. Katie and I have written articles and run workshops on the subject. You can find our article 10 ways to increase your income here and then watch the below workshop about increasing your income.

2. Reduce your spending

Katie and I went hard on reducing our spending when we found out about Financial Independence. We cut to the bone and scrimped and saved! We took it too far and it turned into deprivation.

We have come to believe this is not just about reducing your spending but getting far greater value from what you are already spending. How can you spend less and get more. We believe this is a far more fun and sustainable game to play!

There are hundreds if not thousands of ways to save money, get more for less. Katie and I have spent years working on getting more for less and we have so many ideas but the depth of our knowledge is dwarfed by that of the Rebel Finance School Community.

We were writing our new workshop Living Large on Less with the fabulous Laura Poole and we asked the Rebel Community for their money saving tips. We were flooded with amazing ideas. If you are a member of the Rebel Finance School Facebook Group you can find the post here for ideas

Where to start with reducing your spending? The first thing to do is look at what makes up most of everyone’s spending. The three biggest categories everyone spends on are:

  1. Housing – have you fine tuned your mortgage? What are your utility bills like? Have you put in insulation to reduce heating bills? A huge percentage of our money goes on our housing.
  2. Transport – have you optimised your car expenses? Are you paying monthly finance bills? Have you got a fuel efficient car? Do you even need a car or are you going to cycle and get the weekly shop Mr Money Mustach Style?
  3. Food – Eating out has become very expensive and even groceries have shot up, but there is a way to optimise you spending to get more energy, more health, more flavour from the same money!

Start with the 3 key areas and then work through the money you spend to see if you are getting maximum from each £/$ that is leaving your account. You worked hard to earn that money, it should work hard for you when you spend it!

Enjoy the workshop we did with Laura Poole which will help you think about Living Large on less!

What to do with the gap

The basis of all good finances is having a gap between what you earn and what you spend. The next job after creating a gap is to work out what to do with that gap.