Everyone, at some point, will lose some money even though the value may vary from person to person. Sometimes the loss has nothing to do with you, for instance, if your shop got burgled, a company you invested in folded up or the stock market crashed. Sometimes it’s the result of participating in ill-advised investments, or too-good-to-be-true ‘opportunities’. Whatever the case may be, losing money can be unpleasant and no one likes to lose money, no matter how small.
Your initial reactions may be grief, blame casting, or even denial; all of which are very normal, but it’s important not to stay here. The longer you stay in the past, the harder it will be for you to move forward. And moving forward is where the magic happens. So the question you’re probably asking is how do you pick yourself up, deal with the loss and move forward.
Let’s look at 6 ways to do this
Accept the Loss
Ground zero for moving forward is accepting what has been lost. Once you’re able to accept that the loss has occurred, you free your mind to start accurately and objectively assessing what caused the loss and you’re more open to moving forward.
Assess the Situation
Now you can take a critical look at your finances. Don’t sugar-coat it, be as real as possible with yourself. See how much you lost, check the impact, see what is left, and strategize ways to rebuild. As you look at where you stand in a rational, clear-headed manner, you’re better positioned to see opportunities to regain lost ground.
Get Professional Help or Support
Where do you need help? Do you need to talk to an investment adviser/accountant/lawyer, do you need to discuss debt restructuring with your bank (if you took a loan), or do you need some form of bridging finance from friends/family or a financial institution? Make enquiries, book an appointment with a professional who can help you accurately navigate the next steps. Don’t be driven by emotion but be as objective as possible.
Cut Down on Expenses, For Now
One of your plans for rebuilding your finances must include cutting down on expenses. Go through your monthly budget, is there room to trim any fat? Can you reduce your expenses perhaps by paying for a cheaper DStv plan, cutting back on non-essential expenses? If you’re a business owner can you go through your expenses line by line to see what is absolutely essential? Once your finances are back on track you can always reintegrate those expenses if you think they’re necessary.
Increase Your Sources of Income
This is the critical point that needs all your attention. What avenues can you explore to make some extra cash? Get creative with it. Think outside the box. What digital products and services can you offer – the last few months have shown us all that practically any product or service can be sold online. What investments can you make for monthly returns? Don’t let your financial loss scare you into hiding: be bold and think up new ways to create value.
Learn the Lesson
Truman Capote once said that failure is the condiment that gives success its flavour. You will only succeed if you learn from the past. Reflect on what happened to cause that financial loss. If it was your fault, how can you do better? If it wasn’t your fault, what can you do to avoid it from happening again? You must reflect and learn the lesson in that situation so that you can move on smarter and stronger.
When dealing with financial loss, the last thing you want to hear is ‘it’s just money’. But when you take a step back and look at it, it is just money. The fact that you’re alive means you have the opportunity to create even more than you may have lost. Don’t put yourself under undue pressure to try and get it all back immediately. But be hopeful and expectant that you will bounce back stronger than before.