The biggest barrier between saving and spending is probably comfort. It is difficult to reject something that we can enjoy at the moment because of something we will obtain in the distant future.
Saving money is not a simple task: it is difficult to think in the long term to resist the temptations of the moment. However, fortunately we can trick our brain to do so. We bring you the 10 best mental tricks to save more and spend less.
Let’s see what some of the best are:
- Do not give up things, enjoy them more: Instead of thinking that you will have to give up eating at your favorite restaurant every week, think about how much you will enjoy it when you do it once a month. Psychologically it will be much easier to think that you are not giving up something, but enjoying it more.
- The brake or accelerator method: A popular method is to imagine yourself inside a vehicle every time you make a financial decision: depending on what you decide you will be stepping on the brake or the accelerator. It depends on you how quickly you want to reach your destination.
- Try the technique of the “unknown”: Every time you go to buy something imagine that a stranger gives you the option to choose between the product and the money that is worth that product. What would you choose? If you would opt for the money, you already have it in your pocket.
- Impose the rule of 3 days: The technique consists of always giving you a few days to think between the moment you set out to buy a product, and the time to do it. Maybe during that period you realize that it was not so necessary.
- Involve another person in your savings plan: Have a savings partner. Both you must share your financial goals and the plan to achieve them. Once a week you will meet to tell your progress. If you feel the support – and pressure – of another person you will be more likely to keep your word.
- Try the technique of false rewards: This technique may be somewhat peculiar to you, but there are people to whom it works. Every time you buy something, imagine someone telling you that they will give you 3 euros if you do not. The mere fact of stopping to think can make you realize that you do not need to buy it as much as you think.
- Put a photo in your portfolio that reminds you of your financial goal: Visual images have more impact on our brain. Keep a photo that reminds you of your goal in the portfolio, every time you go to pay something you will see it and ask yourself: what is more worth it?
- Cover up your credit card: Put a physical barrier between you and your card by wrapping it. You can draw pictures of your goal or write down notes to remind you that it is only for emergency use.
- Use the emergency test when you go shopping: To avoid wasting money on clothes before buying a garment, ask yourself if you would put it right out of the dressing room. If the answer is negative, it may not make you so excited.
- Write down your savings goals: Studies show that people who write down their goals are more likely to achieve them. Write down your financial goals and take them with you when you feel tempted to spend.
Other than these mental tricks there are some wise practices which while implemented in our daily life help in money saving:
- Write a list of all the things you want to fulfill. Dreams, goals and specific objectives such as paying your credit cards, a trip to Europe, buying the new Smartphone or a new computer, paying the initial of a house, etc.
- Make sure your goals are realistic and prioritize each of your savings goals. This helps reduce frustrations and escalate aspirations.
- Once the goals and the priority of each of them have been established over time, determine the amount of money you need for each one.
- Now make a list of all your monthly and annual expenses. If you already work with a budget, it will be easier to know how much money you have.
- After having your accounts clear, decide an amount to save money and for how long you will have to save that amount to achieve each of your objectives.
- Set a fixed monthly fee to save. The minimum recommended is to save 10% per month of your income. You can add up all the expenses to identify how much you spend in this category and start saving it instead of wasting money on small and unnecessary purchases.
- Consider saving money as a fixed monthly obligation, which is as important as the payment of basic services or rent. In this way you convert savings into a commitment and not an option, guaranteeing the fulfillment of your goals.
- One of the best tricks to save is to not use these funds for purposes other than the one that was established. Do not stop fulfilling any of your monthly payments and take care of the money you have saved. The best way to achieve this is with a budget.
- Finally, choose a means of formal savings. A savings account in the bank is the best option, this not only gives you the opportunity to save safely, but you can also get a return on the money saved with interest.
Conclusion: Most people believe that money should be saved only when “left over”; They believe that they should wait to earn more money, get out of debt or get a better job to start saving, but to acquire the habit of saving, you just need to organize and have clear goals.