How Often Should You Check Your Net Worth?

Checking your net worth is the financial equivalent of weighing yourself. It allows you to see how your spending affects your wealth, just like weighing yourself helps you check how your eating habits are impacting your waistline. 

But like weight, net worth can fluctuate and decrease through no fault of your own. When the stock market is performing poorly or house prices are falling, your net worth may take a dive, which can be hard to stomach. In that case, checking your net worth every day or week may not be the best thing for your mental health. 

As we head into a potential recession, it’s a good idea to reevaluate how often you’re checking your net worth to ensure you’re striking the right balance. Here are some tips to help you figure out how often to calculate your wealth based on your personality and financial goals. 

Why I Stopped Checking My Net Worth Frequently

As a personal finance nerd who loves budget spreadsheets, I used to calculate my net worth several times per week. But over time I realized doing this was making me kind of anxious. Checking my net worth frequently made me feel a bit discouraged and worried that my wealth wasn’t building fast enough. 

When I switched to checking my net worth quarterly, my mindset toward my finances improved. Calculating my wealth less frequently allowed me to see the progress I was making toward my goals. Instead of focusing on those daily and weekly fluctuations everyone’s money goes through, I was able to see the true trajectory of my saving habits over time. This helped me feel more positive about my financial situation. 

Pay Attention to How Checking Your Net Worth Makes You Feel

If you’re like me and you get anxious when you track your net worth, it may be best to calculate your wealth less frequently. To be clear, I’m not suggesting that you stick your head in the sand and ignore your net worth entirely. Net worth is an important metric that helps you figure out how well you’ve been sticking to your budget. If you’re overspending and dipping into your savings, calculating your net worth will help you catch your mistakes before they spiral and lead to debt. 

So you should still calculate your net worth from time to time to ensure you’re on the right financial track. But you don’t have to check in on your wealth every day or every week if it’s making you feel bad about your finances.

Checking Your Net Worth Quarterly Is Enough

Most financial experts say checking your net worth on a quarterly basis is enough to make sure you’re progressing toward your financial goals. But if calculating your net worth more often makes you feel motivated to crush your financial goals, feel free to increase the frequency. 

On the flip side, if checking your net worth is becoming an unhealthy obsession that makes you feel anxious, it may be time to put down the calculator. Checking your net worth is just a way to get financial information so you can take action. Calculating your net worth should ideally make you feel empowered and in control of your money. When you know what your assets are worth and how much debt you have, you can figure out the best way to utilize your resources and work toward your financial goals. 

If your net worth is hurting your self-esteem or making you feel anxious, try to reframe how you think about it. Your net worth isn’t the only indicator of your financial health, and it shouldn’t dictate how you feel about yourself or your finances. It’s just another tool in your arsenal to help you track and manage your finances so you can meet your goals. 

Net Worth Isn’t the Only Indicator of Financial Health

Health experts often point out that your weight isn’t the only indicator of your health. Similarly, your net worth isn’t the only measurement of your financial health or progress. Even if you’re great at budgeting and living frugally, you may still have negative net worth due to student loans or past credit card debt. But remember that every time you make a debt payment, you’re getting closer to a positive overall net worth. 

There are also other aspects of financial health you can focus on, like how much money you have in your emergency fund or how well you did on your no-spend challenge. Although building wealth is a financial goal we all share, don’t view your net worth as the only money metric that matters. There are plenty of wins to celebrate along the way as you pursue your long-term financial goals, such as cutting back on takeout or saving $1,000 for an emergency fund. 

How often do you calculate your wealth? Do you have advice on how to cultivate a healthy mindset toward net worth? Share your thoughts in the comments section below! 

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