Everyone has heard the age old adage “Money makes the world go ’round,” but have you ever thought about how money can make your world go ’round a little bit smoother? Whether it’s at work or in school, people are constantly complaining about money, or rather, their lack of it. Whether you’re 18 or 80, financial planning can secure your money for the present and the future.

Over 70% of 401k assets are currently being held by the richest 20% of the population. These people can afford to hire out financial planners to map out their entire financial future, but there are a few steps you can take before heading to the big leagues and hiring a planner to help you with your money.

Step 1: Keeping Track of Your Expenses

The first step to any sort of financial management is to keep track of how you’re spending you’re money. Sometimes it feels like you could blink and all of your money is lost to bills, a night out on the town, a new pair of shoes, or any number of things. The key to money management is to identify each of your expenses and eliminate things that are unnecessary. Once you can identify and eliminate those unnecessary and sometimes frivolous expenses, you can begin your journey to savings and financial security.

Step 2: Saving Your Pennies

Once you’ve managed to identify and keep track of your expenses, you can start putting money away. Opening up a savings account and setting a minimum balance to keep in it can go a long way! Even if you never touch the money inside this account, you always know that it will be there if ever you need it. Investing in yourself first is an important step in securing your savings. One in five people who are close to retiring find that they have almost no money saved for their future. This isn’t to claim that a simple savings account will be all that you need, but it’s a start. Even if you’re setting aside $50 per paycheck, you’re taking small steps toward a secure future.

Step 3: Seeking Out Financial Advisors

So you’ve identified your expenses, and learned how you’d like to save your money for the future. The next step here is to find someone who can help you take your wealth and manage it in a way that will help you when you reach a point in your life where you’re ready to retire, or put it towards something else in your future. The key is to start looking for ways to plan for your future early on. Over 40% of people ages 18 to 29 said that they have never given thought to retirement planning, but the truth is the earlier on in your career you start planning, the better.

Wealth tales a lifetime to build, but only a fraction of that time to waste. Don’t let your money get the best of you, start planning for whatever the future holds as soon as possible!