8 Things to Do When You are Broke

When you’re broke, you may forget that being broke is a temporary thing. I have outlined several things to do when you are broke so you can soon make being broke just that, temporary.

I’m always broke.

Sound familiar?

After keeping all bill collectors at bay, you end up with enough to get by.

And start counting down the pennies again till the next paycheck.

It feels like a never-ending Groundhog Day.

So you let out frustration:

  • I’m sick and tired of being broke all the time.
  • I’m completely broke.
  • My life is one big mess. It’s hopeless.
  • I’m so frustrated. I don’t know what to do.

These are all too familiar feelings of being broke.

And when you’re broke, it’s all you think about.

That constant thinking makes matters worse, aggravating your financial and mental well-being.

So what to do when you are broke and tired of being broke?

What to Do When You are Broke

1. When You’re Broke, Change Your Tune

I remember having a conversation with an acquaintance who was in deep trouble with money.

What’s striking to me was how many times he repeated the word “broke” during our conversation.

He’d say, “I want to travel x, y and z but can’t because I’m always broke.”

He’d say in every other sentence “I’m too broke.” or “I’m always broke.”

He reminded himself of being broke over and over and made it impossible to see beyond the current situation he was in.

Being broke is a temporary situation. You can get yourself out of being broke.

Break the vicious cycle by changing your tune: adapt money affirmations.

2. When You’re Broke, Turn It Into Your Strongest Why

Don’t we know the endless hardship and humiliation of being broke too well?

When you are broke, you

  • Count every penny to buy groceries.
  • Avoid opening your bills.
  • Say no to friends’ invites.
  • Skip birthday presents for family and friends.
  • Beg the utility company to give you more time before they cut off your electricity.
  • Cancel a dentist appointment because you can no longer afford it.

It’s depressing, right?

Turn every embarrassment you feel into your biggest “why”.

Use it as your motivator to make a fresh start.

Don’t dwell on it too long though except for reminding yourself of your “Why”.

3. When You’re Broke, Be Honest

Repeating you’re broke at every opportunity is bad.

But acknowledging that you are broke in the first place is super important.


Because a positive change occurs the moment you admit and decide to face the grim reality.

Be honest with yourself. And find out why you ended up with little money soon after payday and what you could’ve done differently.

Do this without being judgmental or harsh on you.

You want to learn where you got it wrong first so you can fix it and avoid making the same mistake in the future.

4. When You’re Broke, Be Excited

Be excited about your proactive and honest approach even if you’re broke.

You’ve acknowledged you’re broke. Identified what has led you to the tipping point you’re in now; the bad money-spending habits you want to rid of.

You’re now in charge of your finance. Even if you’re broke, you have every right to feel excited about your future and envision a debt-free life.

Take this opportunity to review your values. You might realise that material possessions were so not worth it, after all.

Distinguish between “wants” and “needs”. You’ll find what you once thought as “needs” are “wants” in disguise.

No one suffers without Netflix, right?

Set a clear boundary between “wants” and “needs” and strip “wants” out of your life.

And be excited about all the measures you take and the positive impact it’ll have on your financial and mental well-being.

5. When You’re Broke, Reduce Expenses with a Positive Attitude

When you’re broke, it’s important you know the ins and outs of your financial affair, especially the expenses.

And put a positive spin on every change you make.

You’re cutting down expenses because you value a simple life.

You enjoy the extra time saved from shopping. And extra space from storing unnecessary stuff.

When you frame every decision you make with a positive attitude, you soon recognise the things that bring you real joy.

And you no longer feel deprived.

6. When You’re Broke, Increase Income

Look for opportunities to increase your income.

The internet offers a full of opportunities.

Find at least one side hustle opportunity to make extra money.

It could be something that complements an existing skill. Or learn a new skill that might interest you.

Ask for a pay rise if you feel warranted.

Sell stuff that you no longer use.

Not only will you raise cash, but you’ll also declutter your space.

Make sure you’re on top of your expenses before making extra money, though.

Otherwise, the extra money will only make your bad money habits worse.

Nothing is going to change unless you get rid of bad spending habits.

7. When You’re Broke, Gain Knowledge

Invest time in learning everything about money.

Here’s a list of finance books I recommend.

Don’t let your current situation stop you from accumulating knowledge.

Learning preps you for opportunities.

The more you learn about money, the wise you become with money which leads you to save and invest.

We act within the boundary of what we know.

Which is why it’s very important to keep learning and expanding our knowledge.

8. When You’re Broke, Start Investing

Even if you are broke and have no money, challenge yourself to squeeze out $5 and start with it.

When you are broke, it seems impossible to find spare cash.

But as soon as you decide to raise cash, you’ll find a way and make it happen.

And this teaches you several things:

  • When you put your mind to it, you can do it.
  • You’re more resourceful than you think.
  • You know how to be disciplined.
  • You too can invest even if you are broke.
  • The key to investing is starting small.

It takes one small step, to begin with. Over time, you gain experience, learn to spot opportunities and find joy in saving and investing.

And become good at handling finances until you get creative and increase your saving.

The best part of all?

Saving and investing becomes a habit.

And financial freedom is no longer someone else’s story or an illusion but a possibility of your own.

Final Thoughts

Being broke is a temporary situation you can get out of.

Adapt money affirmations as your daily affirmations to break the vicious cycle of being broke.

Remember, you attract what you think about.

Instead of focusing on the fact you are broke, imagine your bank balance growing.

Bring it to the forefront of your mind.

While eliminating bad money habits and finding a way to make extra money, make a habit of saving even a small amount.

You’ll soon make being broke a temporary thing as it should.

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