So I can’t spend ANYTHING?
There are different types of saving, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. One that can work, but that tends to be more unrealistic than helpful, is the total spending snip (spending absolutely no money, saving it all other than expenses). This article will overview some of the drawbacks to this particular method, and some alternative ways to make saving still work for you.
Balanced saving over time
Trying to save all the money you make is impractical, the equivalent of a starvation diet. While it may work for awhile, even some one with the world’s strongest sense of willpower will likely succumb to spending binges of their new found savings.
A more balanced approach is often best, keeping in mind the main principle that to build a savings account you simply need to spend less than you make. If you do that, your savings will grow exponentially.
Trying to avoid spending altogether is primarily unrealistic in nature. You can tell yourself that you’ll only spend $50 this week, but the likelihood is that reality will tell you an entirely different tale. The alternative to being overly stringent here is to be realistic, let yourself spend a little more but still don’t overspend.
While being realistic, recognize that if you have access to your money you will likely spend it. So when you know what you aim to save, remove it to a savings account that isn’t as easy to access as your regular checking account is.
Experiment with no spending rather than committing to it
Instead of instantly committing to not spending at all, ever again, why not try it out for a day? Or even a week? Trying this out in smaller doses will give you an idea about the difficulty of it, will save some money, and will give you some time to think about how to wisely spend your cash.
Be mindful of your personality, and don’t punish yourself
Pay attention to yourself. If you know that you’ll be happy spending $30 every now and then, be careful when cutting that out of your life – it could result in entire spending binges to compensate for what could have been only a $30 cost!
Should you save all at once, or a little bit over time?
You can save by spending no money, you can save by spending less money than normal. The key is to be absolutely realistic and honest with yourself about how you will best save, and what the best approach is for you. Remember, you’re not stuck with just one method, you can switch if one isn’t working for you.