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Priorities & Personal Finance
—Learn what you can do to get started on a successful financial planning journey

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Think Smarter.  Live Better.  Success is Now.



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Many consumers desire to improve their credit and finances—however they are often confused or feel insecure—about the direction that they need to go—and many are unsure about where they actually need to start at.


In this discussion you will be presented with an empowering “pathway to success” that you can understand in clear terms—and apply in your daily life—right now—so that you can achieve the goals that you desire—for yourself—and your family.

It is important that you do things in your credit and financial life in an orderly fashion—and it is important that you do what you need to do!

Speaking of orderly fashionthis website was down for the first time in our 12 year history—for one day due to my oversight in updating my email address—and not being aware of the new domain regulation guidelines—that are now in effect.

Even so, I did not let that unfortunate event get me down for long.  It is with apologies that I send out to all visitors who tried to access this website on May 16th—2014—and were unable to do so!

Having got that out of the way—let's get down to what you can do in an orderly fashion—to attain success more efficiently—and more effectively!

You must gain an understanding of all of the followingand take action in doing what you need to do consistently—if you desire to make your credit and financial dreams come true.


1)    Preparation

2)    Knowledge

3)    Application

4)    Review

5)    Make the Necessary Adjustments

6)    Monitor Results—and repeat first 5 steps—on a consistent basis






To be truly successful you must gain the “preparation” that is needed on the front end so that your mind and heart is ready for what it is about to receive—as it relates to your credit and finances.

You must possess  “positive qualities of success”—at an acceptable level—if you desire to get powerful results!




You must possess in your mind the knowledge of what you need to do—on a daily basis—to make your dreams come true.  Do you have a system that addresses what needs to be addressed? 

Are you aware of how you can use personal financial statements effectively?  Do you have a highly effective way of managing and improving your credit?

Do you know all of the areas of your credit and finances that you must address—and do you have an effective system of addressing those areas—comprehensively?

Well, you need a system that does address those areas that need to be addressedand you need a system that “you” possess—within your mind—that provides you the knowledge and ability to address those areas.




You must have a mindset that states—I will take action and do what is necessary to reach all of the goals that I desire. 

You must get to a point where taking the right action—is almost like a reflex action—you don’t even have to think about it—you take the right action in a manner that is natural—and the norm for you—even though it might not be the norm for others.

Preparation—mentioned above—helps you to gain an “active mindset” that allows you to apply the knowledge that you have learned in step 2 (KNOWLEDGE STEP)—in a more effective manner—than if you did not prepare your mind on the front end.




You must have a system that allows you to look at what you have done—determine if you are on track to get the desired results—or actually get the desired results—and move forward from there.




If you see areas that can be improved—or you see results that are not to your liking—you would now be in position to make the necessary adjustments and move forward from there.

MONTOR RESULTS—and repeat first 5 steps—on a consistent basis

Why Prioritizing Is So Important

It is important that you realize that there are basically three types of learning styles:

1) those who learn how to do it the right way through suffering (making mistakes and learning from those mistakes and correcting their future behavior)

2) those who suffer over and over because they don't learn from their mistakes (they lack wisdom)

3) those who avoid suffering by learning how to do it the right way on the front end—or they learn from the mistakes of others (wisdom is at work here)

Rarely does a week go by where I do not here financial gurus on the airways giving unsound advice—as it relates to the personal finance of individuals who call in.

It is not uncommon for them to suggest an IRA or Mutual Fund for an individual without even knowing (or asking about) their current income, their tax bracket, knowing whether they currently have a retirement account in place—or whether there is an employer match.

Many consumers gravitate towards that advice without even considering whether the advice is sound for their situation—and how could it be—when the right questions were not asked.

What is wrong with suggesting an IRA or Mutual Fund for an individualyou ask?

1) If they currently do not  have an emergency fund that is properly funded—that may need to be addressed first—or at the same time that they establish an IRA or purchase a Mutual Fund

2) A mutual fund suggestion with no direction as to the proper type to select—that is held outside of their retirement account—could be very tax inefficient and cost them real dollars on an annual basis due to taxes eating into the account—on an "annual basis."

3) An IRA suggestion with no direction as to whether it should be a Traditional or a ROTH (or whether there income excludes them from establishing one for their intended purpose—i.e. lower taxes, tax free withdrawals etcetera)—may not be the right approach—depending on their tax bracket—and whether they have another retirement account that may be more appropriate—for example—their current retirement account offers an employer match—and they are not currently contributing up to the match.

Those are just a few reasons why you must make it a priority to equip your mind with the knowledge that is needed to manage your finances effectively—on a daily basisas I could goon and on!

You can now learn in a clear and concise way if your investments that you currently have are invested in a tax-efficientor tax inefficient mannerand use that knowledge right now to possibly reduce your taxes—and enhance your future earnings!

You can now also educate yourself efficiently and effectivelyin any and all areas of your personal financesif you choose to do so!

You must not take generic or bad advice that you may receive (including advice from this site) and not analyze what you receive in an analytical, accurate and critical manner.

You must be intelligent in your approach to understanding any advice that you may receive—that you plan on applying to youror your family's situation!

What You Can Do Now to Ensure Your Future Success

Always realize that there are some things in life that you can't understand fullyunless you have been through that situationhowever mismanaging your credit and finances—does not have to be one of those situations!

You must be active in ensuring your future success—that means continually preparing your mind for success by obtaining the right knowledge—and applying that knowledge in the most effective manner possible.

You must ensure that you are getting the desired results—or you are on track to doing so—otherwise a change in strategy—or approach may be needed.

By doing all of the above—consistently—you will put yourself—and your family on an upward trend towards long-term success—that will allow you to live your life in a style and manner that serves your—and your family’s best long-term interest.

By prioritizing the work that you need to do in your credit and financial lifeyou gain clarity—and you increase the odds of a successful outcome.

The payoff of all of your creditors can occur—purchasing your dream home can occur—living your retirement in abundance can occur—leaving an inheritance for your kids—and grand-kids can occur—however, it all starts inside of youas you must do what you need to do!

By prioritizing the steps aboveyou can put yourself in position to make your future happen—instead of merely just waiting on it to happen. 

Many consumers wait on it to happen—and often end up transitioning before they reach their significant goals—don't let that be you!

By actively doing what you need to doyou put yourselfand your family in position for success.

Even if the success that you desire may not occur when you want it to occur—you must realize that by prioritizing your steps—the success that you desire will occur in a more efficient and lasting manner.

It is important that you prepare your mind with the right knowledge—take that knowledge that you possess—and use that knowledge to make the future success that you desire—occurRight Now!

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About This Article:


The above article was written by Thomas (TJ) UnderwoodThomas (TJ) Underwood is a former fee-only financial planner, a former top producing loan processor and is currently a licensed real estate broker in the state of Georgia. 

He is the writer behind The Real Estate & Finance 360 Degrees Series of Books that include The Wealth Increaser, Home Buyer 411 The Smart Guide to Buying Your Home, Home Seller 411 The Smart Guide to Selling Your Home, and  Managing & Improving Your Credit & Finances for this MILLENNIUM.

In addition he is also the writer who created The 3 Step Structured Approach to Managing Your Finances, and CREDIT & FINANCE IMPROVEMENT MADE EASY—NEW GUIDE that you can download right now "(at MIMIMAL cost $3.95)" to learn more about his writing style and how you can achieve "more" success in the current economy.

He is the creator of where he regularly blogs about helping consumers improve their credit, finance and real estate pursuits in an intelligent, consistent and proactive manner. 

He’s always looking for ways to make intelligent finance improvement happen for those who “sincerely desire” success in their future. He was the first financial planner to coin the phrase "financially alert mind"  and he consistently writes in a style that is designed to provide consumers the ability to take control of their lives and achieve great results.

You can contact him from a number of sources but the most direct way is to contact him through the contact us block that can be found at the bottom of this page.  You can also get highly relevant tips on "living your life more abundantly" and link to and possibly earn revenue by logging on to

He is also an IRS registered tax planning professional with over 30 years of tax experience and can be reached at:



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Peachtree City, GA 30269

770-719-4550 (Direct)

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Atlanta, GA 30349

404-952-9284 (Direct)

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