I usually skip past people’s net worth posts in my RSS reader, but something caught my eye as I scanned Mapgirl’s net worth post today. Yes, we all took a beating the last few months, but many of us forget to look at the big picture.
For instance, thanks to the stock and housing market, we lost 14% in October, and 2% in November, but we’re up almost 35% for the year, thanks to paying off debt, putting money into our savings and continually contributing to our investments. And we’re up almost 78% since January 2007!
Not all is lost, unless during this year you’ve lost in the stock and housing markets AND actually increased your debt and reduced your emergency savings. Perhaps you lost your job or had a medical emergency that racked up tons of debt. If that happened, then I’ll pray for you. But if you just went on a stupid spending splurge, then I hope you’re working on a plan to get yourself out of the red and into the black!
Overall, don’t forget to step back and look at the big picture sometimes. You might continually see your accounts being depleted or your credit card balances going up, but take a look at where you started for the year and see if you’re better off than the same time last year. If you’re up, then you’ve been doing something right and should keep on doing it. If you’re down, then fix what’s wrong…or ask for help.