Close your eyes and envision your bank account as it currently stands. If your face automatically twists into a wince, or you begin to blush like a 12 year old watching a Fifth Harmony video, there might be room for improvement.
Collectively, as Americans, we suck at saving money. Saving isn’t as much a part of our ethos as spending. Why put that money in a boring old savings account when you can use it to get that new car/outfit/meal RIGHT NOW?
The Siren Call Of Spending
I’m not immune to impromptu spending. You’re not immune to impromptu spending. No one is!
I get it- food is delicious and it’s everywhere. You look super cute in that dress and you do deserve to have it. And so we spend. But if you’re spending yourself into an anxiety hole, or spending yourself into debt, or spending yourself further and further away from your dreams, I have to ask: Boo thing, what are you DOING?
Overspending is often insidious. You’re not blowing $500 on one pair of jeans every week. That would be ridiculous!
You’re spending $15 on drinks on Friday night. And then $25 on brunch Saturday morning. And then $17 at CVS on the way home.
You’re ordering a $75 wedding present from your best friends registry. You’re getting new sheets on sale at Target for only $50.
And by the end of the week, you’ve spent that $500 and you didn’t contribute anything to your savings account. Saving is hard, you conclude. How can you make saving money easier?
The Powerful Feeling of Having Savings
You have to have sheets that you can sleep on. You have to have food to, you know, SURVIVE.
But if you’re trading your own sanity for those new sheets, the price is a little too high. EVEN if they were on sale.
If you’re your own biggest enemy when it comes to saving your money, then take yourself out of the equation.
Automate those savings.
Listen. It’s the age of the computer. Let them do the work for you. If you have regular paychecks, do yourself a favor and automate your savings. Let the computers transfer the money for you so you can sit back and watch the savings pile up.
You can use an app like Dobot to transfer money from your checking account to a savings account every few days. Dobot is FREE DOT COM, which we love. There are other saving apps, like Digit, but that costs $5 a month. We are not trying to PAY OUR MONEY to SAVE OUR MONEY, you know what I mean?
Make saving money easier by linking up your checking account to the app. Then you can let them take the reigns or design your saving schedule yourself.
Save like You Spend
We know that we spend money almost every day. Whether it’s filling up our gas tank or picking up a few things for dinner on the way home from work, we open up our wallets all the time.
So what if we saved in a similar way? Saving small amounts of money every few days makes it easier on your weekly and monthly budget, rather than trying to pull $500 out of your checking account at once.
Saving $3 every few days is a small enough amount that it hopefully won’t throw you into the red, but big enough that if done consistently, you’ll actually grow savings!
Dobot offers this exact style to help you save with a program called ‘Smart Savings.’ The app calculates a ‘safe savings amount’ every few days and then transfers that amount out of your checking account into savings.
This calculation is a built in safeguard against your checking account getting overdrawn. With Dobot, Smart Savings is just one way to automate that savings. You can always manually transfer some cash, or you can use their Scheduled Savings, where you select how much and how often you want to stack those savings, and Dobot handles it.
Or what if we saved as we make decisions NOT to spend? Say you’re in Target and you’re about to go HAM on some home decor that you don’t need but looks so cute. But then you remember me and you’re like “Can’t let Kara down. Gonna walk away.” And as you walk away, proudly having saved yourself $50 on inspirational wall decor, what if you *actually saved* that $50?
With Dobot you can text the app anytime to save money, and they’ll make the transfer on the spot for you. So you can make sure that money you didn’t spend actually gets put into savings ASAP!
Check Your Spending And See If You Can Save
Regularly checking in with your money is the NUMBER ONE rule of getting good with money. Honestly, I run a whole damn business that teaches people about money management but if people did this more regularly it would put me out of business.
Checking your spending weekly may seem like a pain in the but at first. I get it. You have to check so many places these days: Venomo, credit cards, PayPal, Square, bank accounts…will the list never end?!
But making the time and building a system to check everything easily will show you SO MUCH about your money!
By checking in as the month progresses, you’ll be able to see where you’re over or under spending. And if you’re underspending, that’s an opportunity for SAVING.
Transfer the dollars you didn’t spend into savings! If you planned to spent $20 on an Uber but caught a ride home with a friend, transfer that money into savings when you do your check in.
Fight your spending demons with the power of our soon to be technology overlords, and take yourself out of the equation. Saving is sexy, and you deserve to feel the joy that comes from watching money pile up in your bank account.
This post was sponsored by Dobot, a free savings app. All thoughts and opinions remain my own.