When it comes to saving money, there are certain disciplines you have to develop. If you've never built these habits before, it can be hard to build good habits around money. Here are some of the primary habits you need to develop so that you can save more money:
- Build good work habits so that you can earn more - that certainly helps!
- Spend less than you earn. That way you have leftover money.
- Save regularly. Some say, "pay yourself first." I would say, squirrel away as much money as you can.
- Put your money into an account that you never touch. In other words, the money goes in but doesn't come out.
- Get by with less.
- Stop wasting money. If you take one of your "indulgences" and cut it out completely, how much could you save?
For example, cut your coffee budget by $100/month. Or cut your entertainment budget by $100/month. That will save you $1,200 every year. If that amount grows by 5% per year, you'll have almost exactly $80,000 saved up in 30 years.
Yes - that's a long time. One of the most important habits you need to develop is delayed gratification.
Most of us don't save money because we'd rather have "toys" now than to have money later. Tasty coffee now vs. $80,000 in retirement: We choose the coffee!
Obviously, these are related activities. They all involve commitment and an awareness of where you spend your money. They all involve some kind of sacrifice or discomfort. Every goal worth reaching requires sacrifice and discomfort. But if you want to lose weight, run a 10K race, or just learn how to golf better, you're going to have to work at it.
Hunger is a great example. There is definitely discomfort in being hungry. But you learn to get used to it. You learn that it's okay to wait to eat. You learn that you're not going to die. In fact, nothing bad will happen if you don't snack at 3:00 PM. You'll be uncomfortable. That's it.
With money, you can learn to get by with fewer TV channels, fewer magazines, fewer lattes, and fewer new shirts in your closet.
We all know people who somehow survive on incredibly small incomes. They don't drop $75 on a meal when they go out. They don't go to the movies every weekend. They get by without buying every toy they want.
At the end of the day, you will save more money as soon as you put your attention on it, create a place to save it, and then start becoming comfortable with the discomfort.
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Checkup time: Have you set up an investment account? How about an Automatic Investment Transfer to your investment account? If you haven't done that, do it now. No one will do this for you.
Everyone reading this can put something extra into savings right now. $5, $10, $100. Something.
Every dollar counts.
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For earlier posts in this series, just search for the label "Y$10K" in the cloud tag on the right.
Or click here: http://blog.smallbizthoughts.com/search/label/Y%2410K.
Let me know how you're doing!