Look, money isn’t easy. I’m so sure of it that you may have noticed that very phrase at the top of this page. But just because it isn’t easy doesn’t mean you can’t make improvements, and saving should be a key component of that.
The main reason I started this blog was that I started to realize I could really take control of my own finances.
I also started to realize that if I can do it, anyone can.
When it comes to saving, time is of the essence
When it comes to your finances, it really is – particularly when it comes to the investing piece of your financial picture. The sooner you start investing, the better.
See, when it comes to investing, time is critical for two main reasons: 1). compounding interest means that money you invest now will grow much more than the money you invest ten years from now, and 2). the longer you invest, the more risk you can tolerate, providing much more growth in the long run.
But investing isn’t the only reason to start your path toward better finances today.
What are your savings goals?
Having the possibility of actually achieving your goals is why I think it’s so very important to start working on them sooner rather than later.
“But what if I’m not sure what goals I want to achieve?”
I think that is an issue for many people. For example, maybe you know you know you want to improve your finances, but you just aren’t sure where to start.
I think the way to start is by asking yourself some very broad, but very meaningful questions:
- Do I want to work until retirement age?
- Do I really love what I do, or am I only doing it to pay the bills?
- How much money would I like to have saved for retirement in 5 years? 10? 20?
These are just a few examples, but the beautiful thing about living in the information age is that you can actually turn all of these into Google searches – how to retire early, how to save for the future, etc. All of these searches will yield actionable steps you can take toward achieving your goals.
My success may not be yours, and vice versa
I’ve seen a lot of reminders of this idea, and I think that is because it is so important to remember.
To give a personal example of this, one of the bloggers who really inspired me personally is Michelle from Making Sense of Cents. She recently posted her income report for March, which shows over $240,000!
That’s completely insane, and while I am definitely keeping that in mind to motivate me, I also make sure to remember that she started her blog all the way back in 2011, and she started from nothing back then. I’m doing the same, but she has several years on me. These things take time. Lots and lots of time.
But to reiterate the point I just made: if you see someone doing something awesome, use it to motivate you, not to discourage you.
Don’t think, “I’ll never be able to do that.” Instead, think, “Wow, that’s amazing, I need to keep working hard if I’m ever going to be like her!”
Do I ever expect to make $240,000+ from blogging in one month? Honestly, no, I’m not expecting that. But I try to remind myself of all the people out there doing amazing things, and if they’re doing well, why can’t I? So it’s more a qualitative thing than it is quantitative. YMMV, as they say.
What does your financial journey look like?
Where are you in your financial journey? Are you actively working toward a specific set of goals? Maybe you haven’t really even started? Quite honestly, everyone’s situation is different, but I would like to see all of you out there moving in the right direction.