Look at the problem in a new way and see the hidden opportunities. We used to think that saving was about cutting costs, spending less, and leading a bleak existence. However, there are other ways to save money without denying yourself everything.
1. Set a goal you want to achieve
Saving for the sake of saving is pointless. You need to do this to achieve something. However, the goal of “living better” is not appropriate: you need something material and tangible.
Having chosen a certain direction, you begin to understand why you are saving and how long it will take.
For example, you need to save 500,000 rubles for the first mortgage payment in two years. Or you want to go on vacation to Turkey in 6 months, and for this, you will need 50,000 rubles. In the first case, you will need to save 20,800 rubles a month, and in the second, 8,300 rubles. You get specific amounts, so you know how much you need to reduce your spending to achieve your goal.
2. Replace shopping with other entertainment
For many, shopping is a way to relieve stress and cheer up. Having bought a new blouse, another palette of shadows, or another spinning rod for fishing, we feel happier for a while. It turns out that shopping is a source of joy, and we don’t really need purchased things. Such a way to recharge and cheer yourself up is detrimental to the budget.
After all, spending money to avoid being unhappy is a disaster.
Think about what else gives you positive emotions and energizes a family dinner, a meeting with friends, an evening alone with a book, or a walk with the dog. Learn to enjoy your day to day activities,, so you don’t be comforted by shopping at the mall.
Suppose you know that you are in a depressed state. Try to walk past a shopping mall and turn into, for example, a playground for a swing.
3. Refuse petty spending
Minor expenses include coffee to go, a bun at the bakery, cheese curds, yogurts, taxi rides, cigarettes, business lunches, mobile subscriptions, a second beer at a bar, and so on. As a rule, we do not notice them, and therefore it is easy to part with money.
You don’t need to exclude absolutely everything, otherwise you won’t want to continue living.
First, analyze where the money is going and whether you can refuse these things (or replace them with cheaper analogs). You cannot imagine life without coffee – do not give up on it to not suffer. But if you can find at least one position that can be deleted without much regret, do it. And then you will start saving without experiencing stress.
But it’s important to remember: the money saved cannot be spent on other things. You need to postpone them to your goal.
4. Imagine this is a game
If you are a gambler, get yourself a financial challenge. Argue with a friend or yourself and come up with a prize. Excitement will not let you get away from the race, and the experiment itself will teach you how to spend money deliberately. Challenges can be very different. For example, like this:
- Live 700 rubles for 7 days. We tested this challenge on ourselves.
- Do not spend a ruble per day (except money for travel).
- Give up one item of expenses – parties, coffee to go, business lunches – for a week.
5. Don’t limit yourself in everything
Savings should be compatible with your lifestyle. If you overdo it, you will start to feel stressed, feel sorry for yourself, and ultimately break down by making a rash purchase. It’s like losing weight: first,, you go on a strict diet, and then you gorge yourself on chocolate.
Take it easy, and treat yourself with compassion. Why prohibit everything and switch to bread and water? Start small and develop the habit of saving gradually.
6. Find non-obvious ways to save
Savings are not only about hard limits. There are more non-obvious ways. For example, you can get a card with cashback and interest on the balance and periodically monitor discounts and promotions in stores.
If a personal nail artist is not so important to you, find a coupon for a suitable service. If it seems that you are paying too much for communication, change the operator (in the process,, you will be offered a more favorable tariff – do not refuse). If you love pastries, stop by for them in the evening when prices are low.
You can brush it off, but these are real financial instruments that will cut costs without unnecessary suffering. Even if you save only a thousand rubles a month on such trifles, you will get 12 thousand rubles a year.
7. Get interested
Save the money you save every month. And for this, open a deposit so that interest will drip on them.
Interest is money out of thin air, your bonus for conscious savings.
If you are afraid that funds may be required at any time, but you cannot withdraw them from the deposit, try other tools. For example, in many ,banks’ applications, there is a function “piggy bank” or “savings account” – money can be withdrawn from there at any time.
8. Create a wishlist
It happens that it is almost impossible to refuse a purchase. You saw something cool in the store, and even at a discount: a silk blouse, a smartwatch, sneakers from the new collection. You don’t have a single argument not to buy this item, but the purchase is not in the budget. If you spend money, you will get out of the plan.
To avoid such situations, create a wishlist. Add the things you really want there, and go through the list from time to time.
You will see how much you want to buy by succumbing to momentary weakness.
As a rule, after a few days, interest in buying is lost. If this happens, remove unnecessary items from the wishlist. And what you still want – ask your friends, parents or colleagues as a gift for the next holiday. So loved ones will stop puzzling over what to give you, and you will receive the desired gifts.
9. Change your attitude to the problem
It is difficult for us to save money because we perceive it as a loss: we take money away from ourselves in the present for the sake of something incomprehensible in the future. Economist Shlomo Benartsi offers an original solution to the problem: “save more, not today, but tomorrow.” “Tomorrow” is not literally, but when your salary is raised. You need to start saving with any amount and increase deductions gradually with each increase.
Adapted and translated by The Cop Cart Staff
Sources: Life hacker