You have to spend money. That is a fact. However, good spending habits can make a difference.
Good spending habits allow you to save more and invest in the future. Bad spending habits can make you lose money and leave you back in square one.
I know how it feels. I have been there for most of my life. However, some things helped me improve my spending habits.
Let’s talk about them.
The Problem of Impulse Buying
Impulse buying is the number one threat to your saving plans. Most people don’t understand how serious it is. Impulse buying provides a wicked twist to an excellent plan. Do you know the worst part? We are confronted every day with the temptation to buy on impulse.
From food to clothes, it’s everywhere! So how can you fight it?
I found these suggestions useful for fighting impulse buying.
- Take out only the money you need. Having more money in your pockets opens your mind to possibilities. You can’t deny that there is a lax feeling and a tendency to spend when you’re “loaded”
- Drop the credit or debit card at home. Unless when necessary, never carry it on an outing trip.
- Making that budget is important. Making a budget isn’t done for the fun of it. You also have to stick to a budget after making one.
Spending Habits Triggers
Spending triggers are things you feel you must spend on. It’s almost a no-brainer for you. Sometimes, it can be people. Some people just spend a lot when they go out and it’s normal to feel like spending a little when you’re with them. However, that can easily turn into a spending spree.
So, know the places and people to avoid. For me, it was the restaurant at my university. Those people really ate my money!
Have a Target
Nothing can inspire you more than having a target. So if you are trying to reduce spending, set a target for yourself.
To begin, start with a small target. Perhaps you could save a small amount every week. Also, a “feel good” attitude comes with every successful week. Get it done for a few weeks and it becomes easier.
Get a saving partner
If you have tried and tried but can’t seem to improve your spending habits, you might need a saving partner. A saving partner helps you hold your funds and doesn’t release it no matter what. Well, except its life and death.
You should choose someone you feel comfortable around. Also, go for someone who won’t budge even under pressure. Trust me, we can be desperate at times.
Cut Down on Data
Internet costs in Nigeria is the number one problem. I recently saw a friend’s picture of how much data he had spent in a month. Over 50 GB! I can’t comprehend how much that must have cost him!
There’s a popular saying in Nigeria that if you save money spent on data for 2 years, you will be able to build a house. Hence, try to cut down on data. That helps you save and improve spending habits.
Another thing you have to stop will be eating out when there’s food at home. You have to reduce it. Not doing so just makes it harder to improve.
Improving Spending Habits is a gradual process
It took more than 5 years to improve my spending habits and I’m not perfect yet. I have made progress and you can too. Take it as a lifetime journey if you are deep into it.
It’s often said that it takes 21 days to change a habit. This one might take longer than that! So don’t give up. Keep trying even when it doesn’t seem to be making a difference.
Final Thoughts on Spending Habits
You’ll feel so much happier when you spend less and wisely. I’m confident you’ll make progress.
How did you improve your spending habits? Please share your thoughts. I’m excited to learn how to keep improving!