You can’t just fall into being able to save money “someday”. It will only happen if you make it happen on purpose. It will take some will-power and determination. It means you have to set goals. You may have to make sacrifices. And guess what? You have to budget! Yes, I said it. The dreaded B-word! But not budgeting isn’t working for you, so it’s time to give it a try, don’t you think? The long-term benefits of purposeful budgeting and saving far outweigh the short-term discipline and sacrifice.
Coming up with a plan is only part of the answer. Sticking to it is the other part of the equation. Your great plan is only great if you actually make it work. So muster up some “stick-to-it-iveness”, and your plans to save money will begin to take on a tangible form.
With An Eye On The “Why”
Putting financial blinders on is a sure-fire way to mess things up in a very big way! You must remember why saving money is so important:
to prepare for emergencies - unemployment, illness, unforeseen events, etc.
to avoid debt - this, in turn, saves money!
for a secure future - someday, there will be no job to pay the bills. It has to come from somewhere!
to help others - we were created to work together and help each other out. Generosity is a way to do that in a meaningful way, and a way to plant “kingdom seeds”.
With An Eye On The End Result
Remember, the difficulty will end. As you begin reaching your financial savings goals, life starts to get easier. This is called financial “breathing room”. Eventually, money won’t always be an issue for you and your family. Isn’t that what you’re looking for?
With Practical Money-Saving Tips
There are countless resources available to help you cut expenses and save money. Setting up your budget will help a great deal in revealing where you’re overspending. Other places are the “spending leaks” you may not even be aware of. Take advantage of these resources and follow through on the advice. You’ll be surprised at some little ways to save that add up. This is money that could go to your savings plan! And it’s within reach.
(I like frugaldad.com for a good place to start with some easy money-saving tips. For some general ideas, go to the page called Budget Busters.)
With A Plan
It all boils down to having a plan. Everything else must fit into your plan. You need to budget. You need to avoid debt. You need to avoid unnecessary expenses. You need to set your goals.
It’s also important that you find a way to pay yourself first. If this means $10 a month, so be it. It’s a place to start. As you cut expenses and pay off debt, this figure will increase. And make it automatic: set up an automatic monthly transfer from your operating account to your savings vehicle.
Speaking of which, do your research. Find a savings vehicle that has a decent return but keeps your principal safe. Right now, savings accounts are earning a paltry rate of return. Look into other savings vehicles as well, and understand their benefits and drawbacks. But, regardless, set aside some money every month like clockwork. It may not seem like much to begin with, but it will become much as you follow your plan to save money.