A good plan today can make a great tomorrow.
Story: Ed White
Financial responsibility is a challenging concept, especially for younger people. Going from spending eight hours in a classroom and depending on parents for living necessities to working a 9-to-5 job and taking care of yourself comes with its share of setbacks and learning moments.
Here are a few tips to help you create healthy financial habits:
1. Wait one month to splurge
The idea of splurging on a purchase often leads to buying something you want just because you see it on the shelf or shining ever so brightly in the dealership’s lot. The next time you come across a purchase you believe you can afford to splurge on, wait a month before buying it. If you find after one month you still can afford it, and still hold a sincere desire to have it, then buy it.
2. Become more
Everyone is in control of his or her income. If you want to earn more, you must become more. What skill sets can you improve on or gain with training? Are you qualified for a higher-paying position at work? What do you possess that people will pay you to do? Everyone is good at something; sometimes it just takes self-research to determine what it is and how to monetize it. The more money you make, the more you can save for your future, which is something you should always do.
3. Use positive thinking
Creating positive thoughts around financial goals helps you stay the course. Frame them in a way that doesn’t like punishment. For example, don’t think of budgeting as “limiting yourself,” think of it as creating healthy spending habits to improve your financial standing. Positive thoughts.
4. Initiate more home entertainment
Consider inviting friends over for dinner or a fun game night instead of going out. Not only will you save money, you’ll find the intimacy it creates among your inner circle is more entertaining.
5. Create special savings accounts
If you’re planning a vacation or saving for a new house, it’s helpful to create separate savings accounts for each. This way, you know exactly how much you have for each activity and how close you are to your goals. If you’re allowed only one direct deposit transfer account at your job, consider automating transfers from this account to your savings accounts each pay period.
6. Break out the whiteboards
Whiteboards are great for helping you visualize financial goals. Consider buying a whiteboard that’s at least 18-by-18 inches. List columns on it of every financial goal for the year. Beneath the columns, list how much money you need to save for each and what type of budget you must hold yourself to each month.
7. Make short-term goals
Sometimes long-term goals can seem so far away it’s easy to forget them and creep back into old spending habits. Set daily, weekly, and monthly short-term goals to stay on track with financial plans.
8. Avoid boredom
Boredom leads to frivolous spending. Find ways to stay busy and avoid random product searches on the web if there’s nothing you need.
It’s beneficial to always stay on top of your short- and long-term financial goals. Knowing exactly how to save now can help you build a solid foundation for your financial future.
Ed White is a freelance contributor to Healthy Living.