We live in a world where everything is at our fingertips, including the ability to purchase anything at any given moment. For normal middle class folks, like myself, I am always trying to figure out ways to save money. In your early 20s, it doesn’t seem imaginable to start strategizing for your future: saving for a home, for your children, and retirement. Bring student loan debit into the situation and watch reality set in.
One strategy to save money is to be very smart about your spending (and NOT spending.)
Here are my tips:
1. Purchase from the Dollar Store
No reason to feel embarrassed here because I LOVE the Dollar Store. There are certain things that you can get away with buying from the Dollar Store. Everything from household cleaning supplies, some kitchenware, greeting cards, and birthday bag essentials. I refuse to purchase birthday bag items from other stores because if I go anywhere else I am spending around $8.00 for a card, bag, and tissue paper. They have it all at the Dollar Store and it is great quality. There are certain things that I wouldn’t buy from the Dollar Store like pots and pans. Never underestimate what you can find though.
2. Stop Going Out
This one can be tough for some people so I appreciate the fact that my husband and I are homebodies. However, there are tons of alternatives like hosting a get together at your house. Everything costs money so going out will only cost you. Treat yourself once in a while but try to stay in. Cook at home, have board game nights, potlucks, etc.
3. Don’t Spend “Extra” Money
It is pretty wonderful when unexpected money falls into your lap. It can be difficult to suppress the desire to want to immediately spend it on something cool but if you truly are on a budget just be logical and put it in da bank yo! You will be glad later.
4. Learn to Say No
Kids, just say no but on a serious note this connects well with point number 2. I am a big family person and I am very social but I have learned to say no to family and friends when they invite me somewhere and I am trying to save. Do not feel bad about it and if they don’t understand, that is not your issue.
5. Purchase Necessities Online
If you go into a store it can be very enticing to see things you want so buy your necessities online. I purchase my 12 month old’s formula, diapers, and wipes online because I know if I walk into a store I will probably leave with more than those items. It is easier to just buy what you need on Amazon.
6. Be Disciplined During the Holidays
This was the hardest one for me to come to terms with. I used to buy gifts for every person in my family. Uncles, aunts, cousins, you name it. Finally I realized that they would be just as happy with me just spending time with them. I made a strict rule that I would only buy for my children, husband, and parents.
Do you have any unique ways that have helped you save? Post your comments below because I would love to hear them!
My Mantra: Strive to be the best me and improve a little every day. Be compassionate, especially to those who may not practice it. Continue to learn and love. Take a moment multiple times each day to breathe. Forgive myself and forgive others. Read books. Live what I preach. Accept others. And above all, laugh every single day.