Welcome to our guest author (substitute teacher) Kirsten Metcalf from the Mormon Channel.
Remember when your parents gave you a piggy bank as a small child? It sat on your dresser, and you would add in all the coins you could find until your little piggy was full and you could finally buy that toy you’d been saving up for.
As an adult, that small piggy bank is probably long gone by now, but saving money should still be something you’re doing! Your savings are your financial safety net; this money helps you remain financially stable, reach goals, pay for family vacations, have peace of mind when unexpected costs come up, and ensure that one day you can retire without money worries.
We all know we should be saving money, but not all of us do. If you find that you struggle to save, know you’re not alone. But regularly saving money is a financial habit you should get into. Your parents and grandparents were probably good savers. If they were, they probably thoroughly enjoyed (or are currently enjoying) their golden years, and if they didn’t, well then learn from that so you can enjoy life more carefree now and during your golden years!
So, where do you start? How can you more easily get into the good financial habit of saving your money?
Savings Jar or New School Piggy Bank
Perhaps your dad keeps an old mason jar on his nightstand and empties the change out of his pockets into the jar every night when he gets home. Take my word for it — change adds up more quickly than you’d think. Find a jar and place it where you will see it every day so you’re reminded to empty your pockets every night. To get even more eager to fill that jar up, decide what that money is going towards, whether that’s a family vacation or paying off credit card debt. Whatever you decide, having a good reason to save makes you more likely to actually save your money.
You can even go back to your younger days with a piggy bank, except nowadays there are more adult piggy banks. Several available not only look nice, they even have more than one slot so you can put money towards savings, spending, and investing.
52-Week Money Challenge
It’s not the beginning of the year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start this challenge today or anytime during the year. You probably already have a savings account at your bank, but instead of having one you rarely put money into, challenge yourself to add money weekly. There are two ways to achieve this challenge:
Add $1 into your savings account the first week, and then each week after you add one dollar more, i.e. $2 for week 2, $3 for week 3, etc., working your way up to $52 by week 52.
Add $52 the first week, and then work backwards, subtracting one dollar each week, i.e. $51 for week 2, $50 for week 3, etc., until you get down to $1 on week 52.
Some people have found they were more enthusiastic at the beginning of the challenge so starting at $52 and working in reverse was best. But either way works, and whichever way you choose, you’ll have saved $1,378 by the end! And don’t forget interest you garner throughout the course of the year, which adds a few more dollars to that total.
So whether it’s an old fashioned or old fashioned way with a modern twist, pick a money-saving method and stick with it. Don’t just think about saving money — start doing it today!
Learn more about savings and self-reliance by visiting Mormon Channel.