Challenge Yourself to Save

Want to go on vacation? Want to have money to spend on Black Friday?

While watching the Disney Parade (Christmas 2013), mom and I saw the cruises they offer and I decided to do some research. I found a destination that mom and I would enjoy and was trying to figure a way for me (myself only) to save for this trip. Hard for me to save money with current bills. Mom and I plan to go on this trip in 2-3 years. I needed to save and save quickly.

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Last Christmas, as part of my Christmas gift, my mom gave me the Money Challenge. The challenge is: Week 1 save $1 and put it away, Week 2 save $2 and put it away, etc through Week 52, save $52. I looked and thought about this and realized that the higher the weeks were, the more that would be coming out of my paycheck (like October, November and December) and I wouldnt be able to do it those months. I did the math and it comes to $115 a month, if you took the total of doing it weekly ($1,378). Therefore, about $28.75 a week. Much more manageable for me. But since I get paid once a month, I just save $115.

Then I took it 4 steps further to save money.

  1. I LOVE movies and love buying the $5 movies at Walmart. I can easily over spend. I LOVE LOVE Black Friday sales at Walmart because their movies range $1-$10 on the movies. So, I figure if I don't buy a movie that week, I will save money during the year. So, I figure I would put $20 aside a month as well for save up for Black Friday. That way I won't feel bad for spending too much that way. When November comes, I will have saved $200 for Black Friday ($20 Jan-October). Then NEXT year, I will have $240 since I will start saving again in November of this year. No guilt now if I buy a ton of movies or other items.

  2. Each year I get a little raise at work. I figure, if I could live on what I made the previous year, I can live on it again the next year (or make myself live on it). So, each month, I take the difference from January 2013 salary and January 2014 salary and I put that difference away. It might be a small amount, but it will help majorly to save money. Since I am single and live with my parents, I can do this since I dont have many major bills to pay.

  3. I save a certain amount of money for gas since I travel a ways away to work. If I spend less than that amount, I take that money out the next month so I dont spend it. Even if its $5-$10 I didn't use, that is $5-$10 more for my vacation fund or for a big purchase I plan to make in the future.

  4. At the end of each month, after bills are paid and BEFORE I deposit my check from work, if there's money left I didn't spend that month, I take that out of my checking and start each month at ZERO and then I put my salary in.

I plan to keep up these plans for many years to come and will make adjustments to point #2 as prices go up. But I plan to stick to living off 2013 salary for as long as I can.

Also, don't blow your tax refund if you don't have to. I personally use tax refunds for car insurance, license sticker, etc. I spend a certain amount on myself and I save the rest.

I now go through life with the "Do I need it?" attitude and it helps tremendously! I don't even stop and buy $5 movies anymore because I know Black Friday will have a better choice range!

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May 8, 20140 found this helpful

What an amazing plan you have! Very smart!

Blessings! Sheila

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April 11, 20150 found this helpful

In October I opened a Christmas account which I put any extra dime I get in there. I saved $250 to date and I get a check mailed to me in Sept. The 28th and my birthday is the 29th. I plan to save $100 next month and so on. I plan to take half to use and save back the other half.

I shop for as much I can at the new dollar tree that opened up. I shop at Walmart for most of my needs through swagbucks and that gets me all sorts of walmart gift cards. I am up now at 4 am doing them now.

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April 20, 20150 found this helpful

I bank at Bank of America. They have a feature that if I use my debit card for purchases, the total is rounded up to the nearest dollar and the change is placed in my savings account. It is called "Keep the Change". It is amazing how quickly those few cents add up. I don't have a total, but I know that several hundred dollars have been added to my savings account since I started. It's money I never see or miss.

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