Saving money is like eating brussels sprouts: it is very beneficial, but it never feels good in the moment.  In fact, it’s best to go ahead and eat the sprouts while they’re warm.  Trust me, they aren’t any better when eating them for breakfast (yes, my mom loved me that much).  Here’s the point: although it may be hard to swallow, don’t delay in doing the right thing.

Pivoting back slightly, one of the basic rules of finance is this: saving equals investment.  Consider saving, then, as an investment for your future; a future that becomes healthier with every new deposit.  Here are some tips on how to make saving a bigger part of your life:

Start Small:

Often we don’t start saving for the same reason we don’t start exercising – the end goal seems overwhelming.  However, small amounts of savings can double, triple, or even quadruple in value over long periods of time.  How do you climb a mountain? One step at a time.  How do you eat a brussels sprout?  All at once, with your nose plugged!  Okay, maybe that didn’t fit, but the sooner you start saving, the better off you’ll be.

Consider it a Gift:

…to yourself.  When you save, you are transferring consumption from the present into the future.  By deferring your consumption, you may be foregoing present pleasure, but with an eye to providing greater means for future enjoyment.  This of course requires you to be future-oriented.  In today’s present-oriented culture, that certainly isn’t easy.  But hey, isn’t being counter-cultural all the rage today?

Be Consistent:

Setting up automatic drafts into a savings account or investment account is really easy.  And what’s more, by saving regularly you can adjust your budget accordingly so that your lifestyle won’t be effected.  By deducting the savings automatically, you are paying yourself first.  That new pair of shoes can wait, your future self won’t.

Emergencies First:

Begin by saving a thousand dollars for emergencies.  This will serve as a cushion for unexpected expenses that might otherwise land on your credit card and begin accruing interest.  To pay cash for those “unexpected” expenses rather than your credit card will encourage you to continue saving for much more exciting things (i.e. cars, a house, etc.).

There is never a good time to save, but having a good mindset and developing good behaviors can go a long way towards a happier and healthier financial future.  If you would like to learn about how Plan Financial can help you reach your potential and accomplish your goals, contact us today!

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