We all understand the value in putting money away for a rainy day. But life can it make it very difficult to maintain a healthy savings account. Increased uncertainty in the employment market coupled with unexpected emergencies and unplanned expenses can take a real toll.
One solution is to make savings part of your weekly budget. Just as you put money aside for necessities like groceries, you can also allocate some money for your savings account. If you don’t trust yourself, set your bank account so that part of your paycheck automatically goes into an account that you do not regularly access.
You can also make a commitment to your savings. Even if you cannot guarantee to put the same amount in each month, at least putting something away helps to make it a habit. With that in place, it becomes less of a chore and just another part of your routine.
It is also wise to cut back on your use of debit and credit cards. When using conventional currency, you can look in your wallet and see how much you have (or no longer have, once you have purchased something). With so-called plastic money, there is not that tangible currency in front of your eyes, so it can be tempting to keep on spending even when you shouldn’t.
Also, try to reduce your expenses. Analyze your monthly bills and decide on what you can live without. For example, if you have a cable package that gives you 500 channels, but you never use more than about a dozen of them, call your provider and downgrade to a cheaper lineup. This may only be $20 less or so a month, but that adds up over the course of a year. Plus, if you manage to do this with a number of things in your life, the amounts can really add up.