Saving money is one thing. Thinking you want to save money is another.
So what’s the difference?
For starters, the first one is the art of actually saving money, not just saying that is what you want to do. All of us want to save money. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t want to save, but the problem is saving money isn’t about talking about it but the actually act of doing it.
Why do so many people want to save money but can’t manage doing it?
The key to saving money, most will say, is having a budget and a plan. Those two have to work with each other simultaneously or saving money is going to be the proverbial pipe dream that goes nowhere.
The irony of a budget is that most people will tell you they have one but the real driver of the budgeting process is more about actually writing down what you plan on doing. So many people argue that they know they spend “about” this amount of money per month (and most likely they’ll know exactly what they make because they get that pesky paycheck every week or two weeks).
But not knowing what your game plan is by knowing what your expenses are means that you’ll be spinning your wheels and just playing a money guessing game. Writing it down, honestly, makes the process real, and when you actually see it on paper, you can’t look away and ignore what is in front of you: the prospect of seeing where your money is going and why you can’t save.
Another way to stick to the saving money plan is to have a budget that isn’t ridiculous or impossible to achieve. If you make $1,000 a month and you spend a $1,000 a month in bills, you have no money to do anything with other than to live, work, pay the minimum, and repeat the process.
Doesn’t sound like a lot of fun for anyone, right?
You have to be realistic in your expectations, and not be afraid to start cutting expenses so that you have that disposable income (at least a little bit) so that you can go to the movies once per month or have dinner out at a restaurant.
The real goal has to be more than just centered on talk. In the case of saving money, talk is cheap and the pen is mightier then the mouth. So jot down what you want to do, and then make it stick by executing and running your money saving endeavor from top to bottom, minus the missing make or break portions of it.
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