Welcome to Personal Finance Insider, a bimonthly newsletter that connects you with the stories, strategies, and tips you need to be better with money.

PFI Newsletter (it's the little things) 4x3

iStock; Alyssa Powell/Business Insider

Here’s what: ‘Tis the season

No, not the holiday season (yet!). ‘Tis the season to reset, get organized, and set intentions for the rest of the year, back-to-school style.

Even though many students aren’t convening on physical campuses this year, you can still leverage the new-year, new-me mindset. I know I am. 

The coronavirus has rocked our economy over the past six months, leaving far too many Americans financially vulnerable, if not wrecked. Things have changed for many people, from their spending habits to their goals for the future to their financial stressors.

The crisis isn’t in the rearview mirror yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make a plan for the road ahead. I’m taking this time to draw up a new personal cash flow statement; reallocate my credit-card rewards; and make sure I’m contributing enough to my retirement and health savings accounts before the year ends, among other things.

Most importantly, I’m thinking hard about my financial goals and reminding myself that despite all the chaos, there are still a few things I have full control over, and I’ll bet you do, too. 

If you’re overwhelmed by your own financial situation or think you may need help from a professional, you might like our new e-book, “Personal Finance Insider’s Guide to Financial Planners: What they do, how they do it, and who can use their help.” Business Insider Premium subscribers can download the 9-page e-book for free. If you’re not a subscriber yet, you can start a trial for $1.

—Tanza Loudenback, Personal Finance Insider correspondent

Expert tip of the week

“Take comfort in context. You don’t want to focus on the 30 or 40 worst days we’ve seen in 10 years and let it make you forget about the good times we had for 10 straight years. Long-term investors almost always win. Take comfort in the content, relax a bit, and stay consistent.”

—Kevin Matthews, founder of Building Bread, during a Master your Money Live Digital Bootcamp on investing (you can watch the full video here).

Stories you might have missed

What 3 self-made Black millionaires want Black Americans to know about building wealth

Three Black women with seven-figure net worths share their best advice for financial success. None of them had an easy start, but it served as their motivator. This story is part of Business Insider’s “Inside the racial wealth gap” series, which culminates Friday, September 25 with a live panel discussion you don’t want to miss (sign up here).

Financial planners agree on the biggest threat to a young investor: a ‘false sense of confidence’

If you’re new to investing and stock-picking is your strategy of choice, heed the advice of experts: Don’t assume the returns will keep on coming. Have a plan in place to balance risk and stay the course, they said.

My grandma’s been retired comfortably for 22 years thanks to a simple rule she lived by

When Business Insider contributor Olivia Christensen sat down with her 84-year-old grandmother to ask her how she’s managed to have a such a long and fruitful retirement, she discovered that although times are different now, “some truths are immovable.”

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