What Does Financial Wellness Mean — And How to Apply It to Your Everyday Finances

May 11, 2022 by Chevron Federal Credit Union

In evaluating your financial wellness, have you taken stock of your personal finance skills? There’s no doubt that financial education is powerful, but it’s just as important to learn and apply it in ways that improve your life. After all, what’s the personal meaning of financial wellness? It’s understanding how to manage your money — and feeling confident in the financial decisions you make. Brush up on your own brand of everyday financial wellness by considering these fundamentals.

Make a financial calendar

Build a separate money calendar — apart from your appointment calendar. Giving your finances their own planning home more directly focuses attention on spending, saving and setting timelines for important financial goals. Enter daily, weekly or monthly expenses and paydays. Then, take a daily money minute to check that nothing is being missed, spot trends and get an accurate view of where your money goes.

Pay yourself first

Financial obligations nibble away at each paycheck, but your future shouldn’t always take a back seat. That’s where the idea of paying yourself first comes in. It makes you a priority by making your first payment of each month a deposit into your savings account — before you do any bill-paying or spending. Committing to this habit contributes to long-term financial wellbeing by prompting automatic savings.

Set meaningful goals

Financial goals are savings, investment or spending targets you hope to achieve over a set time period. Everyone’s aims may differ and are motivated by unique priorities. What matters to you? Sort out what’s within reach, what will take a while to accomplish and what needs to be part of a long-term plan. Then, narrow the field: Decide what goals you intend to reach; estimate funds and resources needed; and assess how long you expect it will take to reach them.

Plan for the unexpected

Build or replenish your emergency fund as a personal safety net when unplanned expenses take you by surprise. While a popular recommendation is to set aside three to six months’ worth of living expenses, you may need more if your job is less secure, your household income is unpredictable or you’re the sole earner for the family. A good place to park this emergency cash cushion is with Chevron FCU’s high-yield savings solutions, which give you higher dividend rates and easy access to your funds.

Check your net worth

Measure your financial health by examining the difference between everything you owe and everything you own. Take inventory with a worksheet like this and then subtract liabilities from assets. When you know your net worth and track it over time, you’re able to plan better and make sensible adjustments. If your net worth consistently increases, then your finances are going in the right direction.

Care for your credit score

A stronger credit score saves you money by giving you greater access to the credit you need and qualifying you for lower interest rates and better terms. Several factors affect your credit score, including how many credit accounts you have, how long you’ve had them, how close you are to your credit limit and whether payments you make are on time. Credit scores are generally based on information in credit reports. And mistakes in your credit reports could hurt your credit history and credit score, so check them regularly. Thanks to extended pandemic relief, you can get a free report weekly from each of the three major reporting companies — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — at AnnualCreditReport.com until Dec. 31, 2022, and annually after that.

Creating your version of personal financial wellness

Financial wellness can feel like a vast and overwhelming endeavor, but it doesn’t have to be to provide the benefits you need in your daily financial life. Think about how learning can be tied to current decisions that are immediately applicable. Then, fashion a method and scope that works best for you. Plus, don’t forget that as a Chevron FCU member, you have access to exclusive webinars each month on a wide range of financial topics, as well as free financial education and counseling, to help you along the way.


From everyday finance to life’s big money moments, it’s better when you belong.