Are you spending more than you can truly afford? Are you worried about your credit card bills, and having enough to cover your expenses each month?
If you’ve been in the habit of spending and putting things on credit, being happy within your current income seems like a distant dream. However, with a few adjustments, you can boost happiness—and spend less.
Let’s dive in.
Get Ruthless about Spending
Ruthless and spending aren’t two words one often sees in the same sentence. If you’ve been spending without thought, this is going to come as a whole new way of living.
One of the first steps is to track your actual spending. You can use an app or an old fashioned notebook. Write down every single expense.
It’s usually easiest if you write down the expense when you spend it. Don’t wait until the end of the week, as you are likely to forget some expenses. Start doing this today.
When you have a month’s worth of expenses, you will see where things are going.
Hint: Just the act of tracking can inspire some new more thrifty decisions.
Set a Spending Goal
This is a lot like dieting. You need to set a goal that is realistic and also inspiring. If it is too low, you won’t make significant changes. If it is too high, you’ll get frustrated and unmotivated.
Pretty much along the same lines of trying to lose weight or get in shape, set up some rewards. The rewards can be something that you’ve been longing to do—and a way to pool the ‘saved’ money into a substantial experience.
Hint: Write down a specific goal and keep it in mind.
Cash is your best tool for evaluating your spending. There is something visceral and immediate about handing over actual bills when you purchase something.
It’s entirely different from pulling out a credit card.
Give it a try. You’ll see that using cash whenever possible is likely to completely change your relationship to spending.
Hint: Create envelopes for different expenses such as groceries, gas, or entertainment.
Read Up on Savings Strategies
Set a personal goal for educating yourself on saving strategies. The goal maybe 30 minutes a day or any amount of time that appeals to you.
When you set a time goal for learning about spending, you’re respecting your efforts.
Hint: Pick a goal that you can achieve. How much study time will work for you?
Deal with Immediate Financial Stressors
Even with a keen eye on spending, you may be in over your head. If this is true for you, explore your options for getting an emergency loan. The internet is your best friend for finding the support you need.
If you have poor credit search for: emergency loans for bad credit. You will find reputable loan providers who can help you handle the emergency. With professional help, you can manage the emergency and position yourself to build a stronger financial future.
Hint: Check out your options today
Keep a Gratitude Journal
Now, it’s time to focus on the happiness part of spending less and living a happier life. One of the fastest and most effective ways to do this is to keep a gratitude journal.
Write down what you are happy and grateful about in your private journal. It may be daily pleasures such as playing with your children, enjoying the sunrise, or taking a walk in the park. Perhaps you are grateful for having a loving partner, enjoying a calm home, or having a peaceful place to sleep.
A gratitude journal may seem like a little thing, however, studies show it directly boosts positive moods. People who keep gratitude journals self-report feeling happier and less stressed.
You can choose how frequently you enjoy writing in your journal. Experiment with writing every day or several times a week. Try out writing in the morning versus in the evening. Use trial-and-error to find your best zone for writing.
Hint: Start your gratitude journal today. It’s low cost, easy, and highly rewarding.
Use these quick tips to begin saving, spending wisely, and practicing gratitude. It’s good to know that you can get your finances in order and enjoy a happy life.