So, how do you save up?
My suggestion is that you should start from the bottom. Start little by little. Open a savings account at a bank or at a credit union and start socking money to it every paycheck. Don’t worry, it’s never too late to save. I started late too. FYI, I was the original ambassador of the Ka-ching Club and there are things, very poor choices that I did with my money…BUT I have found the inner diva. And I hope you do too. More on these on the latter chapters. Let’s concentrate on the joy of savings for now.
My personal technique is opening up a savings account online. I would do a transfer from my checking (at my local bank) to my savings account online twice a month with the same amounts of deposits and voila!, some emergency fund saved up! By doing this, I am restricting myself to all the available cash that I have at my local bank. By doing this, I do not have an instant access on my money when I need it for my compulsive purchases. Yes, you heard that right. Compulsive purchases. Unplanned. Spur of the moment. There are times and there will be a lot of times. I am not perfect and nobody is. That’s why I took the initiative and the first step to better my situation. I MADE IT A HABIT TO SAVE. I treated my savings like a bill that I have to pay twice every month which I should not default at just like the other bills. I included it in my budget as an expense! Yikes!!! But believe it or not, in some strange way, I kinda liked it. There is the feeling of security. There is the feeling of power. There is the feeling of independence. There is the feeling of accomplishment.
For you to start on your first month, maybe you can take out 2% of your net paycheck every pay period and deposit it in your savings. Then, if you are comfortable with that and wants to put more, why not? From 2%, you can make it to 5%, 10% or even 20%…as long as you are comfortable with that amount. The keyword is comfortable.
If you deposit this percentage of your net income to your savings every paycheck CONSISTENTLY, I almost can guarantee you that sooner or later, you’ll have enough emergency savings at the bank. Challenge yourself and make it a habit to save.
Of course, on the other side, the joy of saving is not just about saving after saving after saving…Na ah! If you do this, you are bound to fail. Trust me on this one. Saving is good but if you do it to the extremes just like anything else, it will not do you any good in the long run.
You have to learn how to balance your saving and spending habits. You save but you also need to treat yourself in a manner that won’t harm your finances. You save but you should also not forget the simple pleasures of life. Follow that splurge. Buy that starbucks. Go to the movies. Treat yourself to a spa or whatever that is that would make you happy and a better person. You deserve it. Ka ching a little. JUST KNOW YOUR LIMITATIONS.
To close this chapter, let me ask you a realistic and very timely question and I want you to ponder. If you lose your job TODAY, do you have enough money to get you through next week, next month, next next month and the month after that?
As for now, smile, SAVE and spread the good diva spirit.