We hear people giving similar advice everywhere in the personal finance world. “Save your money”, “Create an emergency fund”, “keep some money in the bank.” However, being rich takes actionable steps that take dedication and discipline.
The real question is how do you go about keeping money in the bank?
And that my friends, is what I plan to go through with you today. These are five steps that I learned are ABSOLUTELY necessary to reaching your savings goals, whether it’s to start building an investment portfolio, or an emergency fund. I hope these tips will aid somewhere in your personal finance journey.
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This blog post represents real life experiences from the writers of budgetbasedlife.com, and is not financial advice. Please seek out a financial advisor for your needs.This post also contains affiliate links. Read our full disclosure for details.
Set a clear goal to become rich.
To the average person starting their personal finance journey, saving money can be daunting. Let’s face it, it is not always easy to squirrel away money with all of the temptation around us.
The step that can create some clarity is to identify a goal. Envision a number that you want to see in your bank account by the end of the year (or however long your goal is).
Divide that number by the timeframe that you chose for your goal. The dividend is your monthly stepping stone, and should be large enough to make great progress, but easy enough to stick to. Make sure to always “pay yourself first” with that monthly (or weekly) number. It will add up over time!
Truly rich people use a budgeting plan.
To have a shot at this savings thing working without a hitch, we need to have a concrete plan set in motion.
A budget is just that. It is your chance to tell your money what to do, and serves as a safety net to lean on when temptation may strike. You would be surprised at how many financially sound people have a budgeting plan!
Budgeting will be addressed fully in a separate post, but to provide clarity, a budget is just a list of your assets and your expenses, and how you plan to allocate your money to balance both.
It helps to have some money left over to provide some security.
Budget = Assets – Expenses.
Avoid blowing your budget.
There is a huge difference between a simple splurge or treating yourself, and blowing your whole plan. You have the ability to add the occasional treat into your budget all at once, or overtime.
Without going off track to your savings goals. That is the beauty of having a budget. You are in complete control, and it only benefits you in the long run. This is why you see people who are considered “rich” still enjoying the finer things in life.
It is the impulse buys that can really get in the way of your progress. Be sure to be able to stop and ask yourself: “Do I really need this? “Why do I want this?”
It always helps me to postpone a purchase for 1-2 weeks. Most times, I find myself not thinking about the item once its out of my sight!
Rich people are masters at saying “NO.”
With saving may come hardship and struggle against external influence. There are times when we all want to hop on a plane and escape our immediate reality right? The hardship comes when your motivation runs out (it may), and you only have discipline to keep you on the right track.
It is not fun to be responsible 80% of the time (realistically speaking), when you look on social media and always see your peers taking lavish vacations, or showing off their new cars. Temptation may arise when friends begin to form money spending habits, and bestow an invitation upon us. Who doesn’t want to be included in getting drinks, or day trips?
Learning to say no protects you from superfluous spending. This doesn’t mean that you should avoid your friends at all times, or cut them out of your life, but setting healthy boundaries is a vital step in reaching your financial goals.
Just like losing weight, or getting healthy, saving money takes time and consistency. Having a realistic view on when you want to reach that savings goal will make the journey a lot easier. Try to refrain from setting unattainable goals. It is the fastest and most efficient way to sabotage your own progress.
Starting small (this is relative) will help to feel in control of your progress. It will make the journey more manageable, and it can even leave room for some occasional (responsible) money spending with your peers and loved ones.
Try to avoid the need to take money out of your savings account (unrealistic goal setting can cause this.); not only could that alert your bank to eventually convert your savings to a checking’s account, but it also makes the discipline within you more susceptible to diminish.
These are the tips that I used to reach my savings goal, and I was able to use this to reach almost 10,000 dollars in one year! Thousands of dollars later, I can’t help but thank myself for my past financial decisions. Now, I use these tips as a blueprint to building wealth. If I were to lose all of the money I’ve accumulated, I would know exactly where to start to rebuild. This careful planning is exactly why a lot of rich people know where and how to keep building wealth over time.
What are some ways that you were able to reach your savings goals, and how long was your timeframe? Do you use any of these tips to keep your networth on a positive trajectory? For more posts like this one, please check out these similar articles on the website. Be sure to leave your feedback below, and I will see you in the next post!