Thought Catalog
March 9, 2017

How To Save Money (Even If You’re Broke)

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What is the issue?
Steven Lewis

It’s crystal clear for most of us that our early twenties isn’t the most financial rewarding stage of our lives. A lot of times we convince ourselves that we’re underpaid, and we joke about how broke we are with our friends. Quite often we get frustrated with people who constantly remind us that we don’t have much life or working experience to demand a decent amount of salary. So we all basically live under a rock.

We live paycheck to paycheck. We embarrassingly ask our parents to lend us some money. We nervously laugh when money is being brought up in a conversation. We grow anxious when we look at our bank accounts, and realize that pay day is still a few days away. And we think that the idea of saving is almost close to impossible.

But I’m here to tell you that it is possible to save money.

You have probably heard the word budgeting before but you have either rolled your eyes about the thought of it, or felt like it’s too much to understand. But budgeting is the most foolproof way in making sure that all your money doesn’t slip out of your fingers. Budgeting is easy to follow if you have the patience to sit down and account all your expenses.

The first thing that you need to consider when budgeting is the amount that you are putting towards rent and utilities.

The advisable cost should not be over 35 percent of your salary, after taxes and government dues. Sharing an accommodation with someone else can save you a lot of money. If you’re the type of person who’s not a huge fan of having a roommate, think of your situation as temporary, and promise to yourself that you’re going to move out on your own as soon as your salary increases.

The next thing to think about is setting a limit on how much money you spend on food and transportation.

Maybe you should start taking advantage of the free coffee and tea that your company offers. Maybe you should stop buying take-out food at fast food chains or expensive restaurants. Maybe it’s okay to eat the same meal you cooked last night for lunch. Maybe it’s healthy to have a walk on your way home instead of commuting, if you live nearby from your work.

If you have an impulsive buying syndrome, always ask yourself a lot of questions when you’re in the mall or grocery store. When your eyes see something that you’re dying to buy, ask yourself: “If I come here tomorrow, will this still be here? Do I really need this? Am I be able to use this for more than one time?”

Sometimes we don’t realize that we already have many things in our lives, and adding new ones isn’t practicable anymore. Sometimes nobody really takes notes of how often you use the same shirt. And even if they are — who cares?

At one point in our lives, we’ve all been guilty of making sure that we’re always updated in everyone’s life. But please try not to pay so much attention on your FOMO syndrome. You need not to know everything that’s happening out there with your friends. The world will not end if you say pass on one Friday night out. It’s okay if you’re no longer the life of the party. It’s okay if you spend your weekends at home sleeping, or watching TV series, or reading books, or scrolling through internet.

Sometimes the best things in life are free.

And lastly, never be discouraged to set aside money even if it’s in small amount.

The common mistake everyone does is they underestimate the power of saving few dimes. They would rather spend them than save them, because they think that they’re not going to make an impact on their financial prospect.

But that’s when they’re wrong.

If you can start small, then you can go big. If you put away your left-over money at the end of the day and do it more often, you will be surprised one day about how far your savings have come. If you can find way to save money with your small salary, then you can find more ways to save money when your salary gets bigger.

Saving for a future that is unknown can save you a lot of hassle. Learning to budget can free you from constant worries and anxieties.

And being broke is temporary.
But staying broke is an option. TC mark

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