10 habits of people who never seem to have money (despite working all the time)

It’s a real head-scratcher, isn’t it? How do some people work tirelessly yet always seem to be broke?

It’s not about how much you earn, but how you manage it.

The truth is, financial wellness isn’t just about your paycheck.

It involves habits – some of which can keep money away from you like a forbidden fruit.

Yes, there are certain behaviors that can make your wallet thin, no matter how often you fill it up.

And surprisingly, many of us are guilty of them without even realizing it.

So let’s uncover these habits.

Here are 10 routines of people who never seem to have money, despite working all the time.

1) Living beyond their means

It’s a trap that’s all too easy to fall into. You spot something you desire, and even though you know it’s beyond your budget, you splurge on it anyway.

This, my friends, is what we call living beyond your means.

Living beyond your means is one of the quickest routes to perpetually struggling with finances.

It’s a common habit among those who seem to work tirelessly yet never seem to have money.

One small, seemingly inconsequential purchase can quickly escalate into a mountain of debt that feels insurmountable.

So what can you do? The key to breaking free from this cycle is discipline.

It’s about distinguishing between needs and wants and making wise financial decisions.

2) Neglecting to save

Confession time: I used to be pretty terrible at saving.

Every time payday rolled around, I’d get that thrill of seeing my bank account fill up, and before I knew it, my hard-earned money was spent on all the things I convinced myself I needed.

But here’s the thing – neglecting to save is a surefire way to always find yourself short of cash.

It’s a habit I’ve noticed among many people who are constantly working but never seem to have any money.

The reality hit me hard one day when an unexpected expense came up, and I had nothing set aside to cover it.

It was a wake-up call that made me realize the importance of having a safety net.

So, I started saving – bit by bit, paycheck by paycheck.

And let me tell you, it’s been a game-changer.

Today, even if things go south unexpectedly, I know I have a cushion to fall back on.

Neglecting to save might not seem like a big deal in the moment, but over time, it can lead to a constant cycle of financial stress.

Trust me, I’ve been there.

3) Ignoring small expenses

Those daily coffee runs, the impromptu fast food lunches, the quick trips to the convenience store for snacks – they all add up.

It might seem like small change in the moment, but over the course of a year, these seemingly insignificant expenses can total up to a significant sum.

Did you know that if you spend $5 on coffee every workday, that adds up to $1,300 by the end of the year?

That’s a sizeable chunk of money that could go towards paying off debt, saving for a rainy day, or investing in your future.

Ignoring small expenses is a common habit among people who never seem to have money.

They focus so much on the big-ticket items that they lose sight of how these little expenditures are draining their wallets.

Let this be your constant reminder: a penny saved is a penny earned. 

4) Not setting a budget

Failing to plan is planning to fail.

That saying holds true when it comes to managing your finances.

Without a clear budget, it’s easy for money to slip through your fingers without you even realizing it.

Many people who always seem to be broke are often those who don’t have a budget.

They might believe they can keep track of everything in their heads, or that budgets are restrictive.

Here’s the bottom line: a budget is a roadmap for your money.

It tells you where your money should go, rather than wondering where it went.

It’s a tool that helps you stay in control, and avoid financial stress.

5) Avoiding financial education

They say ignorance is bliss, but when it comes to managing your money, ignorance can cost you.

Lack of financial education is another common trait among those who struggle to make ends meet.

Many of us didn’t receive formal education on money management in school, and it’s not always a topic freely discussed at home.

However, that doesn’t mean we should shy away from it.

Understanding the basics of finance—such as interest rates, investing, and credit—can significantly impact your financial well-being.

The good news? Financial education has never been more accessible.

There’s a wealth of resources available online, from blogs and podcasts to online courses and webinars.

6) Falling into the debt trap

Falling into the debt trap 10 habits of people who never seem to have money (despite working all the time)

Debt can feel like a heavy chain that keeps you anchored in a sea of financial stress.

It’s a burdensome reality for many people who work tirelessly, yet never seem to have money.

The allure of credit cards and loans can be powerful, offering a quick solution to financial needs.

But, they’re often a temporary fix that can lead to long-term problems if not managed correctly.

Falling into the debt trap can make it incredibly hard to break free and start building wealth.

Interest piles up, payments become overwhelming, and it feels like you’re constantly playing catch up.

But there’s always hope.

Many have navigated their way out of debt and you can too.

It takes determination, discipline, and sometimes making tough choices, but the freedom that comes with being debt-free is worth it.

7) Impulse buying

There was a time when I was a notorious impulse buyer.

Spot a sale? I was there. New gadget out? I had to have it.

It was an adrenaline rush, a thrill, but it was also a habit that kept me constantly strapped for cash.

Impulse buying is a habit that can quickly drain your finances.

It’s buying based on immediate wants rather than actual needs.

It’s making purchases without giving much thought to the impact on your budget or financial goals.

I’ve learned the hard way that the momentary joy from impulse buying rarely outweighs the financial stress it often brings about.

Nowadays, I’ve adopted a more disciplined approach.

When I feel the urge to make an impulsive purchase, I take a step back and give myself time to think it over.

More often than not, with a little bit of time, I realize I don’t actually need that item and would be better off saving the money instead.

It’s been a challenging habit to break, but one that’s had a huge positive impact on my financial wellness.

8) Always aiming for the cheapest option

We’ve all heard the phrase ‘penny wise, pound foolish’. It’s the idea that in a bid to save on smaller expenses, we often end up spending more in the long run.

And this is exactly what happens when we always gravitate towards the cheapest option.

Yes, it might seem like you’re saving money in the moment, but often, cheaper items may not be as durable or effective, leading to frequent replacements or repairs.

In fact, sometimes investing in higher quality items can be more cost-effective over time.

These items often last longer, perform better and provide greater value for your money.

9) Avoiding financial discussions

Money can be a touchy subject. It’s often seen as private or even taboo to discuss, especially when things are tight.

But avoiding financial discussions is another habit that can keep people in a cycle of never having money.

Open, honest conversations about money – with your partner, family, or a financial advisor – can help address any issues, set goals, and make plans for the future.

It’s about taking control of your financial situation, instead of letting it control you.

Being transparent about your financial situation can also help you gain new perspectives, tips, and strategies that you might not have considered before.

Therefore, don’t shy away from talking about money.

It might be uncomfortable at first, but it’s an important step towards better financial health.

10) Not setting financial goals

Setting financial goals is essential for achieving financial success.

Without clear goals, you’re essentially wandering aimlessly on your financial journey—it’s like going on a road trip without a destination.

Financial goals give you something to strive for.

Whether it’s paying off debt, saving for a house, or building an emergency fund, having these goals can motivate you to make smarter financial decisions.

Goals also provide a sense of accomplishment.

Achieving each goal boosts your confidence and encourages you to keep progressing.

No matter how you feel about your current financial situation, take some time to set financial goals.

Make them specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART).

Then start taking steps to achieve them.

You’ll be amazed at the difference it can make in your financial health.

Plan smart, live stress-free

The connection between our daily habits and our financial well-being runs deeper than we might think.

Every habit we’ve discussed, whether it’s overspending, neglecting savings, impulse buying, or avoiding financial education, boils down to small daily choices that accumulate over time.

These habits can either lay a sturdy foundation for financial success or lead to ongoing financial struggles.

But here’s the silver lining: habits can be changed.

As you ponder these ten habits of people who always seem short on money despite working hard, take a look at your own habits. Which ones serve you well, and which ones could use a tweak?

Remember, making one wise financial decision at a time can set you on the path to financial well-being and break the cycle of perpetual financial stress.

It’s achievable. And it all begins with recognizing and adjusting our daily habits.

Picture of Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair

Ava Sinclair is a former competitive athlete who transitioned into the world of wellness and mindfulness. Her journey through the highs and lows of competitive sports has given her a unique perspective on resilience and mental toughness. Ava’s writing reflects her belief in the power of small, daily habits to create lasting change.

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