Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Might of the Mite

Saving isn't sexy.  I learned a long, long time ago that saving is kind of like brushing your teeth - it just needs to be done consistently.  I started out literally saving change, then moved up to having $10 taken out of my check and put in a savings account in a credit union in another state (so it was a pain to get to and could not be accessed for instant gratification) and now a chunk of my paycheck goes to savings (thank you, Lord).  The little bits add up when you just let them do their thing.  And you don't really miss that little bit each pay period but it sure comes in handy when an emergency hits.

The rule of thumb most Christian financial people use is 10% to tithe, 10% to saving and 80% to live on.  I can tell you from experience that is a good beginning distribution but if you are already struggling from paycheck to paycheck, that seems impossible.  So do 5%, 5% and 90%.  Just start saving something.  My grandma always said you better have some money saved for a rainy day because it IS going to rain. 

As my savings have gotten more significant, I've been able to categorize my savings - making sure I have the money for the semi-annual car insurance payment, the deductible on our health insurance, car repairs, Christmas gifts, etc.  I have an excel spreadsheet to keep track of all of it.  By breaking it down into categories, I trick myself into believing I don't have much money available.  And my bills get paid on time without any stress. 

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