Are you finding it difficult to save? Or your saving efforts seem to stall?
Setting a long-term saving objective like buying a house is easy. Working towards achieving that goal is where the rubber meets the road. Sometimes, the going gets tough and your saving efforts may stall. When your efforts stall, you may feel discouraged and lose the energy to get back on track or even start all over. But you don't have to give up. Instead, follow these best practices to get back on track and save money.
Don't Beat Yourself Up
When you fail to hit your weekly or monthly targets resists the temptation to blame yourself. Instead, concentrate on eradicating the habits or decisions that set your back.
Remember, when it comes to finances, discipline is more important than perfection. We all make mistakes. So don't beat yourself up but learn from your mistakes and get back on track to save money.
Identify What Went Wrong
Unless you identify what went wrong, you may repeat the same mistake. So take time to investigate why you're not making good progress and write down the contributing factors.
Writing them down provides a solid record of something you can always go back to. Perhaps you went over your budget, spent too much money on lunch, or you were too preoccupied.
Remember Why You Started
Sustaining the initial excitement to save for a long time is difficult. In order to save money, and keep at it, you need to remind yourself why you started in the first place. If you feel you're losing it, spend some time thinking about why you started saving.
Perhaps you were looking forward to having the peace of mind that comes with owning a home. Your initial motivation may help you to reconnect with your purpose and spark your desire to save.
Rework Your Budget
Budgets are the most important aspect when trying to save money. Is your budget working or have you abandoned it?
Now is the right time to revisit and rework your budget. Look at your income and expenses. Find out whether you can continue using your original budget or change it to suit your current financial situation.
Take a closer look at your spending. Cut some expenses such as gym memberships and entertainment services and channel those funds in your savings.
Find An Accountability Partner
An accountability partner is someone who is actively willing and committed to helping you achieve your goal. That can be your spouse friend or a family member. Choose someone you can freely share your saving goals and weekly or monthly progress with. It is also important to choose an honest partner who will hold you to account without necessarily judging when the waters get rough.
Super-Charge Your Savings Momentum
Nothing can keep you motivated more than seeing savings go way up. Therefore, find ways to jump-start your balances. You could find ways to earn some extra income and earmark them for saving. You could also sell items you no longer use. And if you find yourself getting cash gifts, tax refund or salary bonus put that money in savings.
Get Back To Basics
Do you know where your money goes every day, week or month?
The secret to saving more is to track your spending. Although you may have an idea of what you do with your money and know how much you're saving, it can still be challenging to stay on track.
Tracking your expenditures after failing to hit your savings goal can help you to identify problem areas, improve your budget and spend wisely. Fortunately, there are many apps like Mint that can help you. You could also do it manually by writing down all the purchases you make.
Saving money towards a long term goal like buying a house is not a walk in the park. Sometimes, you may feel like giving up when you don't seem to hit your monthly targets. However, good things take time. Rather than giving up, use these tips to get back on your feet and chase your dreams.