How to make savings your first expense

How to make savings your first expense and not your last, oh and why Christmas is no excuse!

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It’s easy to feel powerless when your credit card debt is out of control but you CAN regain control by changing your money mindset and making savings a habit regardless of what’s around the corner.

We live in a society that struggles to save money and when Christmas is just around the corner, that savings plan can often just be left for a New Year’s resolution.

It’s the norm to spend and amass as much as possible. When the common ideal is to always strive for bigger and better, saving is not a priority.

I call this the “Consumerholic” mindset and it doesn’t matter what time of year it is – be that Christmas, birthdays, whatever!

It took seed in the 1980s – an indulgence decade that hooked people on credit cards. Generation X got caught up in the craze, and credit cards became standard for the generations that followed.

People now use their credit card as if it was their personal fund, allowing them to purchase whatever they want, whenever they want. Why bother saving?

This mindset is compounded by the false sense of security people have about their jobs.

Workers assume wages will continue to rise, so they kid themselves they’ll be able to pay off their debts more easily in the future.

But if they do receive a wage rise, the extra income is used to expand their lifestyle rather than pay down their growing debts.

Saving is a form of risk mitigation.

The old adage “save for a rainy day” rings truer now than ever.

We all need a buffer for times when unexpected expenses arise. We need to learn to save money for the things we want, rather than immediately whip out our credit cards.

You may think it’s difficult to save money, but it’s not. Here’s how you can start saving money now:

Start by putting aside $50 a week.

Place it into an interest-bearing account you aren’t allowed to touch.

You can even make this an automatic process so you don’t forget and aren’t tempted to spend the money on something else.

Once saving $50 a week becomes a habit, build on it.

Increase your savings incrementally. Add an extra $10 a week, every second month, and see how quickly your savings grow.

Saving should be your “first expense”, not your last.

Having that buffer means you won’t have to rely on your credit card for all your purchases.

You won’t have to waste hundreds or thousands of dollars on interest. And it is never too late to make it a habit.

Start saving money now, because you never know when you will need it in the future.

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