Learn how to save money to live better as a new mom
When it comes to finances, one of the first things that financial experts talk about is how to save more money so you can live a better standard of life.
Having a nest egg in your savings account helps to give you that bit of relief in knowing that if there is an emergency that you will be able to cover the expenses without having to worry about whether you can pay your other bills for the month.
Once you get the hang of it and make it a habit, it will become a natural part of your financial process.
Nobody likes the feeling of always being behind and having to play catch-up when their paycheck lands in their bank account.
Learning how to effectively save money can help you to enjoy life rather than having to stress about how much is in your bank account.
Plus, you don’t want your child or children to see you stress about money every day either, right?
Here we review six ways to save money and live better without feeling like you’re sacrificing.
But before we get into all of the creative and easy ways to save a few extra bucks, let’s talk about how saving money can lead to a better life.
How Saving Money Can Lead to a Better Life
We’ve all heard the saying that money can’t buy happiness. While this might be true, it certainly can buy peace of mind.
Have you ever been in a situation where you got an unexpected medical bill, or your car needed a repair so you could get to work?
Did you have the necessary funds? If you didn’t, how did that make you feel? Did you need to borrow money? Take out a line of credit to cover these expenses?
Having that little (or a lot) of extra money in your savings gives you that peace of mind that if something happens, you got it covered!
Having that financial security might not “buy” you happiness, but it can certainly lessen the stress associated with unexpected expenses.
Saving money can also allow you to pay off debts, which can also lead to a better quality of life.
So many people feel like they are drowning in debt and that there is no way out. When you save money and pay off your debts, you will no longer feel tied down to a job you might hate or a living situation that you don’t enjoy.
The Many Benefits of Saving Money
There are so many benefits to saving money, no matter your age, vocation, or financial status.
- Easing stress associated with money
- Working towards or achieving financial freedom
- The ability to help friends or family in need
- The ability to make donations to charitable causes that you care about
- Retiring early
- Improving your credit score
- Working towards achieving life goals
- Not having to worry about whether you can cover unexpected expenses
- Options for investments
- Leaving a legacy for your family
- Increased security and peace of mind
- A sense of control of your finances
- Building consistent money habits
Ways to Save Money and Live a Better Life
You don’t need to have loads of disposable income in order to start saving money to live a better life. Whether you are living paycheck to paycheck or have a great paying job and few expenses, you can start to save money to improve your life.
While these steps don’t need to be taken in the order listed below, it is wise to follow some type of plan in order to achieve results.
1. Define Your S.M.A.R.T. Goals
A S.M.A.R.T. goal is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
SMART goals can be applied to pretty much any goal that you set in life. Whether you are looking to lose weight, build a business, find the love of your life, or focus on your finances.
When it comes to saving money, you can’t simply just say that you “want to save money.”
If you do this, you will never be able to hold yourself accountable.
A SMART goal for saving money might look something like this:
I want to save $50 per week for the next 3 months then re-evaluate my savings goals. I can do this by not getting coffee every morning and biking to work to save on gas.
This goal is specific in you are saying exactly how much you want to save, is measurable because you can see by your savings account balance how much you have saved, achievable by the actions you are going to take to save money, relevant because it is directly related to your savings goal, and time-bound with the 3-month timeframe.
Having this SMART goal front of mind will help you to avoid frivolous spending as well.
2. Make it Automatic
Saving money can be made so much easier when you put things on autopilot.
When you make saving money automatic, you don’t have to think about it and before you know it, you’ll have a good amount saved.
One way to do this is through round-ups with something like an Acorns account.
3. Check Your Spending
Often people don’t realize how much they are spending on certain things. You might know how much your rent is, or your cell phone bill, but do you know how much you are spending on gas, coffee, or going out to eat?
Well, now is the time to really dive into your expenses and how much you are actually spending on everything.
Take the time to sit down and go through your bank account to figure out how much you are spending and on what. Write down everything.
You can also spend a month or so and spend like you normally would but writing everything down.
This will give you an accurate representation of what you are actually spending your money on.
While there are bills and expenses that you won’t be able to change, like your rent or electric bill, there might be others that you can save on.
Are there subscriptions that you don’t really use or need that you can cancel?
Could you bike to work or school to save money on gas?
Can you pack a lunch or dinner rather than eating out?
Are there apps on your phone that you pay for that you don’t need?
Could you rent a room out in your house to make a few extra bucks a month?
Could you turn off all of your electronics when you aren’t using them? Can you make your own coffee rather than going to get the expensive gourmet stuff?
You see, there are tons of things you can do to save more and more each month.
While $5 here and there won’t seem like much at first, it’s going to start adding up and you will see the fruits of your labor.
4. Cut Unnecessary Spending
Yes, this is the one that most people struggle with.
The thing is, we become comfortable doing certain things in our life. This saving money for a better life task goes hand in hand with checking your spending. Once you know where all of your money is going, it’s time to cut out all of the things you don’t really need.
Once you have everything written down and categorized, it’s time to take a look at what you actually need and what you don’t actually need.
Do you get a snack every time you go to the gas station?
Do you buy snacks from the vending machine at work? Do you go out for drinks with friends? Do you order food when you don’t feel like cooking? Do you get your hair or nails done?
These are things that could be cut so you can save money.
5. Shop Around for Goods and Services
Switching your goods and services can be a pain in the butt!
Companies often offer some type of introductory offer for new customers then increase the price after 6-months to a year.
Why, because they know a certain percentage of people just don’t want to do the work to switch services to save money. Well, use this to your advantage.
Either call up your current provider (cable, insurance, whatever) and ask them for a discount, try and negotiate, or switch to a new, cheaper service.
6. Stay Accountable
While you might not want to air your financial concerns to all of your friends and family, there is nothing wrong with letting them know that you are working to save money.
Let them know that you aren’t going to be going out for dinner and drinks for a while or that if they would like to do something you would be happy to find cheap and free activities to do with them.
You should find that most people are supportive.
Afterall, if they truly just want to spend time with you, spending money shouldn’t matter.
7. Invest in Yourself
Investing in yourself is one of the smartest things you can do.
You are always going to be your best asset. Whether it’s taking a class to improve your job skills, investing in a business, or taking care of your health, these are all great ways to save money and live a better life.
When you invest in yourself, you are essentially investing in your future.
You are increasing your chances of making more money, being happier and healthier, and just overall improving your life.
8. Live Below Your Means
This is probably the most important way to save money and live a better life.
If you want to be successful at saving money, you need to live below your means.
This doesn’t mean that you have to live a life of deprivation, but it does mean that you need to be mindful of your spending.
If you want to save money, you need to be aware of every penny that you are spending.
You need to know where your money is going and make conscious decisions about your spending.
One way to live below your means is to have mostly meat-free dinners you make in the Instant Pot.
Or, just use cheaper cuts of meat, canned or frozen vegetables and buy on sale for those stressful nights you need to prepare dinner.
9. Automate Your Savings
One of the best ways to save money is to automate your savings.
This means setting up a system where a certain amount of money is automatically transferred into your savings account each month.
This way, you don’t have to think about it or worry about trying to save money each month.
It will just happen automatically.
FAQs on Saving Money to Live Better
1. How Do I Save Money on Groceries?
There are a few ways you can save money on groceries.
One way is to plan your meals ahead of time so you know exactly what you need to buy and don’t end up buying things you don’t need. Another way is to buy in bulk when possible. This can help you save money on items that you use frequently.
Finally, you can also look for coupons and discounts which can help you save money on your total grocery bill.
2. How Do I Save Money on Entertainment?
Make sure to take advantage of free activities in your area.
Another way is to be creative and find ways to entertain yourself and your family – like having fun coloring pages or family game night – without spending a lot of money. Finally, you can also look for discounts on entertainment activities, such as movie tickets or amusement park passes.
3. How Do I Save Money on Travel?
Plan your trip ahead of time and look for deals on flights, hotels, and rental cars. You can travel during the off-season when prices are typically lower to help you save money for a better life. Finally, you can also look for discounts and coupons that can help you save money on your total travel expenses.
In the end, what works for one person might not work for another. You need to find what is going to work for you and stick to it in order to reach your goals.
How do you save money? Let me know!
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