With the arrival of the New Year, now is a great time to examine some of your habits, especially when it comes to money. Many Americans find themselves in the predicament of overspending. Here are some practices that you can put into place to help stop overspending.
IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM
For many people, spending money is an emotional response to something that is happening in their lives. Did you nail that presentation at work and want to reward yourself? Maybe you got in a fight with your best friend and you’re feeling down? Identifying the feelings that trigger overspending can help you stop it in its tracks. Find something help to combat these feelings like watching your favorite TV show, taking a hot bath, or
SET SHORT-TERM GOALS
It can be hard to change your behavior. Make it an easier adjustment by setting some quick, attainable short term goals. This could be something as simple as bringing lunch to work three days a week or not using your credit card on weekdays. Choose a way to treat yourself (that will still keep you on budget) every time you reach a goal. Start small and then work your way into your bigger, longer term goals.
CALCULATE THE COSTS
Stores have made it easier than ever to do your online shopping. It’s super simple to add items to your cart and buy them without even thinking about it. But before hitting the check-out button, sit down and do the math. Say you want to buy a pair of boots that are $200 and you make $20 an hour at your job. That is one full eight hour workday plus a couple of hours for one pair of shoes. Is it really worth it?
FIND SOMETHING ELSE TO DO
When you find yourself wanting to reach for the laptop for some online shopping or grab the keys to head to the mall, redirect yourself to something else. Clean out that closet you’ve been avoiding, try out that new recipe, or call a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while.