Earlier in the year, I was super ambitious about my financial goal. It’s almost as if I thought my Fairy Godmother was going to swoop down and stop me from spending frivolously.
When I take a hard look at why I haven’t reached some of my financial goals, the number one reason is physically visible….
As I look around my apartment on an average day, I will easily find a few shopping bags of items I have yet to pull out after purchasing them. Crafting goods, shoes, target finds, etc. It’s actually a source of embarrassment. I don’t need all this crap, but I somehow feed off the act of shopping. I unwind by strolling the aisles and then feel extra happy by making a purchase.
Unwind? What sense does that make when you look in your bank account and see nothing in savings and nothing to show for it?
Sure, I’m a girl that likes to shop. I’m a girl who has paid off her credit cards and car…so it feels almost guilt-free, but it’s not. I still owe over $50,000 in student loan debt, and I know that the balance due could be vanishing quicker if I just stopped shopping the way I do.
But here’s the thing….I talk a good game. I will “school” others on what to do with their money and what not to do, but then not follow my own advice! I realize that I need to break this spending habit to ever reach some of my financial goals. So let’s focus!
Priority Financial Health Goal: Start a weekly savings plan
I decided to follow a simple plan I found on pinterest. It seems doable and it’s absolutely less than what I spend on eating out per week. So if this forces me to cook more, then we have a win-win!
I’m on week 6 and still going strong. I had actually forgotten that I had also set up a weekly $20 transfer to my savings ages ago (in addition to the monthly automatic $25 transfer from my bank), so the balance will be higher than $1000 in 26 weeks.
Why is this significant for me? I don’t think I’ve ever had $1000 just sitting in an accessible account. If it’s not in my 401K, then I spend it. SUCH A TERRIBLE habit that I need to break!
Now do I have plans for this savings account money? Honestly….yes. I want to take a great vacation for my 40th birthday next year, and I want to do it guilt free, and I want to remain credit card debt free.
So this poses a dilemma. I’ll be accumulating savings to deplete them for an experience. Will it be fabulous, and do I deserve a great trip? Yes. However, I have to admit that there is a slight kick to my gut in thinking about finally having savings and then potentially cleaning them out.
Is there a solution?
I need to save more, I need to spend less, and I need to create another revenue source from my creative creations (potentially). I’m not sure what the final plan will look like. I just know that I’m happy with phase 1 – there are untouched savings in my bank account.
If I need to dip in there for an emergency, I won’t feel as guilty because that’s what savings are for, but I really want to come up with a plan to have savings and take a trip next year.
What if I focus on winning the lottery instead? It’s got to be easier, right? Ha!