I have a surprise for you. If I’m sharing it on the internet, it’s no longer a secret, but I’m still calling it that. So, here’s the deal: I’m a spender at heart. That’s correct. The individual who started a company completely dedicated to educating people how to create a budget and make saving money a priority used to enjoy spending money.
In fact, it wasn’t until approximately two years ago that I began to love saving money. Let’s be honest: the excitement you get from buying a pair of shoes or a lovely picture frame from Target pales in comparison to the rush you receive from depositing $100 into a savings account. There is just no competition (at least in my opinion)!
Thankfully, I can now claim that I prefer conserving money than spending money (well, most of the time). Don’t get me wrong: I still like a good shopping excursion, and who doesn’t love a good Target? But I’ve gotten a lot better at spending money wisely and within my means. Because, while I used to enjoy spending, I despised the sensation you get the next day when the guilt kicks in.
If you’ve ever been there, you’re familiar with this sense of guilt. It eats away at you. You begin to have doubts about your purchase. But then there’s the other half of you that defends that clothing you just had to have. As you spend more and save less, the cycle continues indefinitely.
But here’s where I tell you there’s still hope! You may enjoy spending money right now, but I assure you that you CAN begin to enjoy saving money as well! Here are the six things I did to start experiencing monthly savings!
Recognize that things must change.
The realization came to me all of a sudden one day (as I can only imagine it hits other people as well). I awoke to find that I had stuffed my closet, house, and stomach.
Because everything around me was so congested, purchases that began out as joy had turned into aggravation. My closet was overflowing. My house was disorganized. And my waistline was becoming bigger. I was spending a lot of money and getting nothing in return.
My finances seemed out of control, and I knew something had to happen. Can you identify? The first step is sometimes simply recognizing that something has to change. Accept the fact that you are overspending and under saving. Allow it to soak in.
Allow yourself some leeway
Giving myself an allowance was by far the most effective way I reduced my spending habits. I understand what you’re thinking. Allison, I’m not a child. I don’t require a stipend.
But I’m going to be brutally honest with you here. You need an allowance if your spending habits are juvenile.
I’ll be the first to confess that my spending habits were abysmal. So I made a concession to myself. I began with only $20 a month and quickly increased it to $30. This stipend was only for me and no one else. I’d spend it on whatever I pleased or save it for a larger item I’d been eyeing.
Giving yourself an allowance is brilliant because you are reminding yourself that it is appropriate to spend money. That is the truth! It is quite acceptable to spend money. However, it should be money that you planned for and budgeted for. An allowance teaches you to spend your money on what is important rather than what is handy. It also enables you to save more money than you previously imagined feasible!
It will teach you patience (and who doesn’t need more patience?), as well as discipline. And when you make a mistake and spend more than your allowance (which you will), you’ll learn how to forgive yourself and create goals for the next month.
Allowances aren’t just for kids anymore. In fact, I feel allowances are for you!
Make it a contest
When it comes to conserving money and finances, I’m not a big fan of competing against others (besides, I’m not a naturally competitive person). But I’m not against competition with oneself! Yes, I’m referring to you!
One technique to educate your mind to like saving money is to transfer more money to saves than you did the previous month. Can you send $500 to savings (or debt!) if you sent $400 last month? As an added incentive, compete against your prior self! You can even figure out how much money you saved last year and strive to outdo it this year.
Making saving money a competition with myself has previously worked wonders for me. The thought of comparing my current self to my prior self is extremely inspiring. So, establish some goals and start saving!
Keep track of your development
If you’re saving for an emergency fund, a vacation, or a significant purchase, keep track of your efforts! Find a chart on the internet (or use the one in my Budget Life Planner) and keep it prominent. You’ll be surprised at how much fun it is to color in your chart to indicate how much progress you’ve made toward your savings target!
You also become more financially aware of your spending and can recognize early warning signs, an invoice generator can help you get to grips with your spending patterns and becomes a mindful spender.
Surround yourself with other people who want to save money
You’ve probably heard the adage, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” This is a very accurate statement! If you hang out with people who spend a lot of money, you’ll want to spend a lot of money as well.
You’re going to want the product if you’re following Instagram influencers who are constantly reminding you why you need the newest thing. Instead, take precautions! You don’t have to follow people on social media who make you want to buy things. You might also minimize talks with individuals who are continuously telling you about the latest purchase they made.
Instead, surround yourself with folks who like to save money rather than squander it. Look for folks on Instagram or Facebook who have made it their mission to motivate others to save money. Consume their material! You’ll be shocked at how much it motivates you to start saving money rather than spending it.
Be kind to yourself
Learning to love saving money (or even sending a big portion of your paycheck to debt) might be difficult. I’m not going to lie and tell you that it was simple. There was no magical moment when I awoke and decided I liked saving money. It just doesn’t work like that.
Instead, it was a slow and steady process with hiccups along the way. I like to think of it as racing preparation. I began running when I was fresh out of college. What started as a mile around my large apartment complex turned into many miles. In fact, I paid to join a running club (and if that isn’t a commitment, I don’t know what is!). However, there were moments when I simply did not want to run. Instead, I wanted to sleep in or watch Netflix. So I’d skip my run, and (surprise!) I’d feel terrible afterwards.
The same is true when you learn to appreciate conserving money when all you want to do is spend it. You will labor hard to save money and then make a mistake. You’ll spend money someplace, and you’ll suffer a setback. But, because no one is flawless, you’ll get back up. Furthermore, it is totally OK to spend money when you have budgeted for it! There are things you can do to make conserving money and spending less difficult for yourself.
Finally, give yourself grace, an allowance, and motivation to continue saving money.
When it comes to numerous tasks, hiring outsource web development businesses will almost always result in a cost savings. You’ll eventually stroll into Target and realize you don’t need everything. You’ll only buy what you planned to buy. And you’ll feel liberated because money no longer has a hold on you. Instead, you have complete control over your finances. I promise you, this is doable, and you’ve got it!