If you could go back in time, what money advice would you give your younger self?
Most people answer: “I would tell myself how to save money.”
When I was young, my grandmother helped take care of me and my siblings. “Always save for a rainy day,” she would tell us. Hey- whose grandma DIDN’T say that, right!?! Why is it so much easier said than done for so many people? We all know we should save for an emergency; but why don’t all of us do it? According to an article by CBS News, close to half of Americans have more credit card debt than savings. CNN reported that 76% of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. My question is, if so many of us are living financially uncomfortable and we know we should be saving, then why aren’t we making small changes to take control?
We don’t need to make extravagant changes. Baby steps are incredibly advantageous. All it takes is a small change, hard work, time, and believing you can do it. My dad used to have a “jug” for change. He would come home from work, hand us quarter, or nickels, or even pennies, and say “put it in the jug!” We would scramble and race to be the first ones to put the change in the jug. When our family wanted to update our old TV, we came up with a plan save faster for a new set. Using our allowance money, we paid for an hour of television time. We were only allowed to pay for one-hour increments to prevent ‘hogging’ the TV. Whoever paid for the hour was allowed to watch whatever they wanted. We were a family of six and our parents taught us to work for what we wanted, how to save and pay for what we wanted, and now I am able to pass that value on to my own daughter.
Fast forward thirty-something years…my car had broken down. It cost $1,200 to fix. Guess what? Luckily, I had $1,500 in my “rainy day fund.” My point is this. I didn’t always save. Somewhere along the road, I lost focus as many people oftentimes do. Thankfully, I believed in myself, realized small changes and got myself back on track. I have learned that the unexpected things that come up are actually expected things; now I am ready for them. A rainy day fund makes it less stressful. If I can do it, you can too. What ways are you saving for a rainy day? Obviously, we cannot go back in time to make up for mistakes, but we can make changes now and move forward. We can teach our kids, friends, or family members what we know now.
If you aren’t saving yet, when will you start? Start getting your pigs in a row now.
Believing in yourself and investing in yourself will make you richer than any amount of money can. LSS believes in you and is here to guide you in achieving your financial goals. Call 1-888-258-2227 or visit http://www.lssSd.org today and let us help you achieve your financial goals.
By Rachel Malloy