Hey all! As you know, as of my last post, I had already saved $125.00 this summer. That was about a month ago, and so I just thought I would let you all know that I have now saved a grand total of $225.00! You also know that I did find myself having a hard time at the beginning. Therefore, I thought I’d share with you all some things that have helped me be successful so far.
Earlier this summer I told you that I’m a waitress at one of the restaurants here in town. Being a waitress, I’m not always sure how much money I’m going to come out of a shift with. I also always leave work at the end of the day with cash that I’m tempted to spend, so both of these factors make budgeting and saving a little challenging. With my somewhat unpredictable income, here are some things that have helped me stay on track so far this summer with my challenge:
- I write down all of my monthly expenses so I know how much I need to earn. My monthly expenses include rent, utilities, groceries, and now also includes the money I put away in savings and for loan payments.
- I gave myself a strict budget to follow when it comes to grocery shopping each week. I typically try to make a list and stick to it, and that keeps me from buying any extra things that I don’t really need.
- Each time I leave work and count my tips, I subtract that from the total amount of my monthly expenses. If you work an hourly wage job, you can do this too by figuring out how much you made in the hours that you worked. Knowing how much I still need to make helps me think twice before I spend money on things that are often unnecessary (when you actually pay attention to where your money is going, you’d be surprised at how much of it is stuff you could live without!).
- I also like to think of things in terms of how long it would take me to earn that money back. If I feel like buying clothes I think, “How many tables would I have to serve in order to earn this money back?” If you have an hourly wage job, you can think of it in terms of how many hours you would have to work. Putting things into perspective like this helps you become more aware of things you really need vs. things you just want.
These are just a few things that have been helpful to me along the way; however, I’m hoping that some of the things I’ve learned are helpful to you all too!