Maybe you even want to maximize that value – i.e. have more money. Then you can travel more, build a golf course in your backyard, buy a pet jaguar, or check off whatever’s next on your bucket list.
Well there’s two ways to make this happen:
- Make more of it (Higher Income) – There’s just a few sites out there dedicated to this topic.
- Spend less of it (lower expenses) – or at least improve your spending habits – spend less on things that don’t really matter so that you have more to spend on what does matter.
This article will share what I’ve found to be the number one habit you can have to make you better at #2 – Track your spending.
So why is it that it’s so easy to just go on week after week, month by month and year by year and never be able to improve our spending habits.
I think it’s because we’re not holding ourselves accountable. Just like any bad habit, we know that we should change, but it never stays at the forefront of our minds long enough to bother us to the point where we will actually take action. It’s much easier to push those thoughts back behind others, like who’s on Dancing With The Stars or some other incredibly important topic.
So how do you get rid of this complacent attitude and actually begin to take control of your financial life?
Rule #1 to Improve Your Spending Habits – Track Your Spending
You need to have a way to keep your spending near the top of your priority list. The only way to do this is to keep track of it. It’s as simple as that. There are quite a few ways you can do this, which we cover in a different post, but the point I want to get across here is just that it’s imperative for you to just do it.
Seeing your expenses on paper has an immediate effect on your spending habits. I guarantee that after just a week or so of keeping track of every dollar you spend, you’ll have a totally different mindset when it comes to your money. If you’re like me, you’ll be shocked at how much of your income has just been disappearing, and you’ll no longer be able to just forget about it and carry on like usual.
Like they say in AA: “Acceptance is the first step towards recovery.”
And even if you want to, how can you improve something you have no visibility of? Getting a starting point for how much you spend now is the first step on the way to building a great budget and really making your income go much, much farther.