Saving Money is Fun! Try These Finance Challenges

articles money Apr 23, 2020

What would you do if you suddenly had extra money? Would you think of paying off existing debt? Or will you consider buying that luxury handbag that you’ve always? Your answer to this question says a lot about your financial status at the moment. 

If you opted to pay off the debt you currently have, this means that you are a responsible individual. However, if you choose to use your extra cash on something you’ve intended to buy, then have the wrong kind of mindset surrounding money. 

The question to ask yourself is this: do you really need that bag? If you know that you don’t, but you’ve still decided to buy it, then you shouldn’t be surprised that you’re in debt.

Putting Off Something Stressful

Whenever you’re reevaluating your spending habits, like your credit card debt, or your lack of savings, how do you feel? If you have been putting off dealing with all these financial problems, then you may be in a lot of trouble. 

However, by ignoring your debt and perhaps making more unnecessary purchases may relieve your stress for a moment, the problem does not go away. It will keep coming back until it is addressed either by you or a debt collector.

Stop and take a look at the problem at hand. If you start taking action now to solve your issue, you’ll relieve yourself from future worries. Not only does taking on this money challenge prepare you for a financially secure future, but it also opens up more opportunities to become more economically stable. 

Still Don’t Think You’re In Trouble?

Do you have a weekly savings plan? Are you able to pay off your credit card debt? Are you up to date on your tax payments? Do you pay your utility bills on time? If your answers to any of these questions are “no,” then you are in financial trouble. You need to learn how to live within your means. Furthermore, do you see yourself in any of the below statements?

  • In debt unable to save for the future
  • Don’t keep track of finances and needs to learn proper financial planning
  • Behind in tax payments
  • Leaves bills unpaid for several months, but don’t want to deal with them
  • Wants to get things in order but do not know where to begin

If you can relate one or more of these scenarios, then it’s time to get your act together. 

Where Do You Begin?

How do you begin sorting out the financial mess you are in? You don’t have to overwhelm yourself with all the financial concerns you have at the moment. Take it one step at a time, and you’ll be able to sort things out. 

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Tip 1: Don’t be afraid to go through everything. Sort out the mess one piece at a time. Spend some time each day looking into your finances and how you can deal with each issue. Make a list of the debts that you currently have. Arrange them in a directory where the minimum payment for each is listed along with the date when the payments are due. With this, you’d be able to see what needs your immediate attention and what can be negotiated later. 
  • Tip 2: Create a plan on how to pay everything off. With the list of debts in your hand, sit down and make another list. This time, make a list of your sources of funds each month. No matter how seemingly small they may seem, put them in that list. Every penny counts. If you want to truly pay off your debts and start a new life being financially independent, you need to make it happen. Perhaps sit down with your bank to combine your debts into one payment or even smaller amounts.
  • Tip 3: Continue working with your financial institution to figure out what structure of payment could work for you. Some people might be able to give you recommendations, but what works for you will depend on how easily you can adjust. Don’t be afraid if the first step didn’t turn out so well. Try and try again. The goal is to be financially stable, debt-free, with savings. That is where you should be aiming. 

Money-Saving Challenges

Where do you begin to put your money says a lot about the end-result you’re going to enjoy. There are several money-saving challenges that you can try, but there’s no one solution that fits all. Read below for a few ideas and perhaps experiment with one or two of them.

The 52 Week Money Saving Challenge

This is the most popular one because of its simplicity. Throughout the 52 weeks of the year, all you need to do is gradually increase the amount you put into savings. For example, you begin to save $10 for the first week. In the second week, you can increase this to $20 and so on and so forth. It will go on until you’ve completed the 52-week challenge, and you’ve got more money than you ever imagined after only 52 weeks of savings. If you take on the challenge, you get to enjoy the many things that come with it, including all the extra money to put towards your debts or other needs.

Double 52 Week Challenge

If you think that a 52-week challenge is too simple, then go ahead and double your savings. If you’ve been saving for quite some time, taking on this challenge should be easy. The more disposable income you have, the easier it is to collect and double it up. Allow yourself to save more money. 

With this version, you are simply doubling the efforts of savings. For example, if you decide to keep $2 in the first week, then increase that amount in the second week and save $4. Continue until you double the amount you save each week. By the end of the 52 weeks, you will have more than enough to spare. 

No-Buy Month

If you’re struggling with weekly savings challenges, then perhaps trying a no buy-month will be more manageable. Pretty much this means that you don’t buy anything that you don’t need. Food is a need; candy is not. Practical shoes for work are a necessity; fancy heels are not. If you’re struggling with unnecessary purchases or spur-of-the-moment purchases, try to avoid those situations and stores as much as possible. Try learning how to make your favorite coffee at home or start cooking at home instead of eating out.

 Saving money is not about getting yourself rich. Instead, it is about putting yourself in a financially stable position so you can better dream of a bright future

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