Ever wonder how to begin saving your money and time? Good news, there is no extensive mathematical equation or textbook you have to read to do so. Just a handful of small adjustments will help you have more time to do what’s important to you and more money in your pocket. Here are five simple tips to budget your time while mastering your money.
Have you heard about this growing movement? Meal prepping is preparing your meals on a weekly basis instead of day by day. This helps you save a tremendous amount of time in shopping and in cooking each night. Since you are planning out what you are eating for each week, your shopping cart has fewer items (and less unhealthy temptations) which makes your bill smaller and your wallet happier. Not only do you save when buying these items in bulk every week or two, but cooking it in a way that makes sense according to your schedule, preparing for the following days will become that much simpler. You can refrigerate or freeze the meals that you make each week and pull them out to heat up or pack when each new day begins. Simple stuff right? Give it a try.
ASSOCIATE WITH PEOPLE THAT LIFT YOU, NOT DEBBY DOWNERS
The next tip is to associate yourself with uplifting people who push you to keep striving for your goals, not ones who are draining to be around mentally or financially. This sounds easier said than done but we have all struggled with relationships that were toxic for our well being and progression even though these friends weren’t bad people. Here’s the bottom line, you have to prioritize your friendships or you will not become the person you truly want to be. It might be initially difficult and uncomfortable but having a conversation about creating new boundaries with your friends while finding new people to associate with is going to help you stay on track. Association breeds assimilation. If you are committed to creating a better future, you will find the strength, words and behaviors to support you commitment and to create an environment that nourishes and nurtures it.
We already know you are budgeting for your savings each month and that you also have bills you need to pay accordingly. Paying bills are routine so why not go ahead a make them automatic so you don’t have to worry about spending the time doing it manually. Most online banking features allow for automatic transfers and bill pay schedules. When your direct deposit hits your bank account, set a schedule for when a percentage of that money can be transferred to your savings account. Also, you can schedule a time to pay your monthly bills directly from your bank account. Optimize your technology and have it assist you in your life? Now you can spend that new found time doing something more important to you. Please note: Just because you automatically set a savings transfer or auto bills doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep your eyes on. Check in periodically to make sure that all things are working as they should and that there are no surprise debits.
ONLINE GROCERY SHOPPING
Another tip to help you save time is to optimize online shopping in a whole new way. Whether you like the convenience of not having to leave home or the convenience of getting your items as soon as you purchase them, online shopping is evolving to be more beneficial to our needs. For stores that allow this feature, start shopping online but opting to do same day in-store pickup. This is a happy medium between the two worlds. Shopping online will help you manage how much you are going to spend and not get tricked by the shiny checkout food and nic-nac stands. When you already know what you are looking for then you are more likely to stay within budget and only get what you need when shopping online. In-store pickup also helps you save time by avoiding the lines that can get out of control in stores. Gain more hours and dollars back into your day.
24 HOUR PURCHASING RULE
The last tip here is big and can be applied immediately. Before you make the decision to buy something, start practicing the 24-hour rule. This also works very well with online shopping. If you want to buy something that is not essential (meaning you can survive the next 24 hours without it) leave the store empty handed. If you forget about what you wanted to buy later in that day then you didn’t really need to buy it and just saved yourself money! Often times, if it was not truly important you will forget about what it was. To take it one step further, start unsubscribing to newsletters and email promotions that want you to buy things at discounted prices all the time. Chances are your life was going great without these things, so why trap yourself into the trouble of buying it now. Avoid the temptation from intersecting into your life altogether. This will help you save a ton of money by avoiding the things that you really don’t need, financial frustrations and returns.
There are tons of small things you can change in your thought process and actions that can help you save time and money. Start trying one of these tips today and see how powerful gaining control back over your time and spending can be. What methods are you using to manage your time.