Updated: Apr 23, 2022
Have you ever wanted to go out with your friends, and then you realize that you can't because you don't have money?
Even though the bible warns against loving money (1 Timothy 6:10 ), Money is a necessary tool to survive. Therefore, when you don’t have it you can really FEEL it.
I will share some additional information on saving money in today's post. Last week, we discussed how to save money when self-publishing, but I realize that many of you reading this blog would benefit from some general money tips. These tips are the ones that helped me to save $10,000 in less than six months getting paid a little more than minimum wage.
Tip 1- Establish good money habits
Surprisingly, the thing that establishes the difference between being broke and having six figures in your bank account is the habits that you have every day. Here are some habits that could be killing your account.
Number one: Eating out: Eating out is one of the most expensive things you can do to yourself. The average meal with eating out can cost anywhere between $5-$60+. If you eat out two times a day, three days a week, and spend $10 each time, that amounts to $60 a week or $240 a month! That might seem like chump change. However, this pattern would equate to $2,880! How many books could you buy to learn how to better yourself with this Money? How could you use your $2,000 a lot better?
Ways to Save Money when eating out: Try to cook certain items and buy certain items: For example, our family would eat out by cooking fries at home and then going out to get a burger. Or, sometimes, we would replace the fries with fruit items like apple slices. Over time those little dollars can add up.
Don’t buy drinks at restaurants: Restaurants make a ton of money off of drinks. For example, the average drink costs between $2.99 and $5.00, and the average person will refill their drink a max of two times. That can be an expensive cup of juice. What can you do instead? Replace your normal drink with some water and lemon. Then add a touch of sugar or stevia to make DIY lemonade. This tip has saved me hundreds of dollars
Number two: Don’t go to the grocery store hungry: Have you ever gone into a store to get one or two things, and you end up going crazy? When you are hungry, it chips down on your resolve, and you might end up buying some things that you do not need. If you also want to avoid stopping for fast food, it can be helpful to buy fruit to keep in your car and your areas at work. Some of my favorite fruits include grapes, oranges, and mini tangerines.
Number three: Avoid tiny purchases: Tiny purchases killed my wallet in college. I found that whenever I wanted something, I would buy it. My weakness was stores like Forever 21 or Rue 21. I would justify the purchase because it was super cheap and then lose the item or only use it one time. Don’t stack up on these small purchases because you will soon find out that you have spent hundreds of dollars on unnecessary items.
Tip 2- track how much money you are spending.
Have you checked out my free excel spreadsheet?
The sheet offers many simple categories to fill in how much money you have spent. The document is also editable, so you can change the color categories and tailor it to you.
Why is tracking Money important?: Tracking Money is vital because every cent you spend is one spent that you are not saving. When I was writing my book, Since When Did Single Mean Sad, I found that it was a lot easier to overspend on things when I was not keeping track of how much money I was spending. Tracking Money is also essential because you will always know which company you have spent Money on if you want to come back later.
Tip three: Always have a list if possible
Sometimes, it isn't easy to know precisely what you are looking for if you don’t have a list. Notating what you want is always a good thing. You can utilize multiple sources to make a list, for example, notepad, google docs, or Microsoft word. Lists help you focus on what you are trying to find. Examples would include food etc.
Tip four: Check your bank account often
Ignorance is bliss in everything but your bank account. You need to be aware of what is going on in your account at all times. This goes with tip number two. Pay attention to what category your Money is in (more on money categories later) and which one is eating up your cash. At the moment, I have found that both food and my car are what eat up most of my Money. A considerable tip for if you have Bank of America, download the app and set up fees for if you overdraw from your savings account more than six times. This will help you regulate your cash flow and ensure that you are not overspending.
Tip 5: Use cash
Growing up, my parents used the “Envelope method” to pay bills. They would withdraw the cash from the account and put them into different envelopes based on the bill type and the billing name. It was not until I grew older that I realized that carrying around cash is better than using my card. When you have cash, as soon as you run out of money, you know that you will need to visit the ATM to get more. Therefore, it can be a lot better to carry cash to be more aware of your spending. Comment down below if you want me to post on how to do the envelope method effectively and see if it works for me.
Tip 6: Establish categories
Categories are the groups of things that you spend food on. The main categories for a budget may include
You can use these as the colors on your Excel Spreadsheet. Once you find your categories, notate which categories you spend the most on and which categories you could cut down on if possible.
Tip 7: Ask yourself THE 6 questions: If you don’t know what I am talking about, you haven’t read my book yet! Make sure you grab your copy to learn the six questions you should ask yourself before your next purchase to keep you from falling down a deep money hole.
Overall, the best way to spend less money and save more money is to plan. The quote “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail” is so accurate when it comes to matters of the mind, the heart, and the wallet. Just remember, you have control of your Money.
Tip 8: Don’t use credit: I used to use my credit card for a while to buy little things and get cashback on gas. But then, I started going to the gym regularly, and I would earn a 5 cent reward on every gallon of gas. Many gyms and places you frequent offer gas rewards, so take advantage of those and ditch your credit cards. Credit cards are fantastic! Until you open your bank account and realize that you still have to pay that balance on top of any other fees that you have to pay. Also, I learned that when I got a car, my credit score did not matter. How much credit I had in assets such as a car mattered. Once I got my car and started making regular payments, my credit score went up, and I didn’t even have to pay my car note with my credit card to have good credit.
Tip #9- Tithe: If you have not grown up in the Christian church, the concept of tithing might be foreign to you. However, in the Christian church, tithing is important. When referencing tithing, it is the only time where God tells his children to test him and see if he will not open the windows of heaven and pour out blessings (Malachi 3:10). Since I started tithing many years ago, I had never gone without food, water, or gas, even when I had less than five dollars left in my account.
Tip #10- Stop lending people Money: Want to know the number one way to introduce stress and pain into your life? Allow people in your life to borrow money from you. There is a pretty big difference between lending someone money and giving them money as a gift or getting through a challenging situation. The idea of lending is that people will have to pay you back. Many times, this will cause stress. Especially if the person does not pay you back right away, protect your friendships. Also, never lend someone more Money than you could deal with not having.
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