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Start a Savings Program

Stop spending and start saving. Figure out how to live with less. Replace a spending habit with a savings habit.

Pay off those credit cards. Challenge yourself. Be brutally honest about your spending habits. Then make a commitment to invest in You.

There are many financial advisors today who write blogs and articles on how to build a savings program, develop a reserve and make smart investments. Learn as much as you can about what it takes to make your money work for you.

Remember, you worked for your money. You earned it. You are in charge of it. Only you can decide what you do with it. Make it work for you. 

If you are used to living from paycheck to paycheck you might think saving is impossible. It isn’t. But it does take self discipline.

Years ago, when I was 17 and barely surviving on a minimum wage, I didn’t think I would ever be able to save anything. But I followed a principle I was taught as a kid – save 10% of what you earn. How could I save when I barely could pay for rent and food?

First I had to find out where I spent my money outside of housing, transportation and food. So, for one month I wrote down every expenditure I made. I was surprised to discover that a lot of my money was spent on impulse buying – not large items, but nickel and dime stuff. A lunch out, a lipstick I didn’t really need, that cute set of earrings I couldn’t live without.

It was the little things that quickly ate up my money. When I stopped all impulse spending, I was able to save a $1,000 in a year’s time.

Back then, that was a lot of money. It took a lot of discipline, a commitment to a principle I believed in and diligence. But when I had that money in the bank, I really felt good about my accomplishment. Today I continue to challenge my spending in relation to my income and what I have invested to grow.

©2012 Marlene Anderson, MA, LMHC, NCC

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