Living Within Your Means?

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Living with the ability to save

Learning to save is an exercise in the art of learning perspective, and what it means to manage money. You have to not only understand what it is to live within your means, but to live beneath them if you expect to grow a savings account. It’s a set of skills, many of which I’m proud to say I have successfully mastered at this point in my life – but not without work.

Living beneath your means is a necessity for building things like an emergency fund, a savings fund of any kind. It’s the true expression of security, to know you’re not only clearing expenses but also building a future.

This article will overview some of the ways you can get started with this forward thinking kind of saving.

Track your spending

Tracking your spending is a great beginning to learning to really save, because it gives you a great idea of where your money is going and what money traps you may be falling into.

Try using a financial journal for a week, look where it gets you, and experiment with eliminating various expenses you may not have ‘needed’. As you see the amounts adding up, it’ll really motivate you to change your spending behaviour, and grow your savings int he process.

Getting organized

A key step in the saving process is avoiding unnecessary banking fees, late fees, and other fees that can be avoided if you simply organize your bill payments. Make sure you’re paying all of your bills on time, even if you’re making a minimum payment, as it will help you to stay organized and help you to form good saving habits in the long run.

Prioritize saving

Saving doesn’t usually just happen, spending has to slow down, things have to be sacrificed for savings to occur. Making savings a priority means targeting luxuries you can afford to cut out of your life, to make room for savings.

Working on your habits

The good news about having a lot of bad financial habits is that they are just that, habits. Habits can be made and they can be broken, it simply takes work. Try switching an unhealthy habit like always eating out with a healthier alternative, like trying a new recipe at home. The experiment will show you how you can save money, and still enjoy the things that you love to do at the same time.

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