Q. How can I SAVE money to create wealth (which means cutting back spending) and still have a feeling of ABUNDANCE, not a mentality of LACK (which means the desire to SPEND).
A. Oh the devious ways we fool ourselves by how we choose to think.
If you think like a Consumer, then cutting back spending to sock away savings will absolutely feel like scarcity or deprivation, while spending offers the pleasurable (but deceptive) pretense of abundance.
When you think like a Wealth Builder, you understand that every cent you put in savings is money you’re giving to YOU (not Starbucks or MasterCard), so that ultimately you can purchase what you please without pressure or worry.
To paraphrase the old saw, a Wealth Builder tells her money where to go. A Consumer wonders where it went.
The difference between the two mindsets is not deprivation but delayed gratification. And it’s easy if you think small and automate. Every month have some money, no matter how small, automatically transferred from your checking to your savings account. You don’t miss what you don’t see.
What if there’s nothing to spare at month’s end? Try giving up something small, like a daily latte, and bank the savings. One woman funded her IRA with lose change from her purse, coins she found in pockets doing laundry, and cash from the coupons she redeemed at the market.
I recommend two types of savings accounts. An Untouchable for emergencies and unexpected expenses. And a Touchable for fun stuff, like a vacation or shoe sale—which keeps you from dipping into your emergency savings, yet not feeling deprived.
Bottom line: Instant gratification is such a cruel illusion. I’ll never forget meeting an elderly woman who lamented: “I always got such joy from shopping. But now that I’m old and I look back on all the money I wasted, I wish to God I had saved more.”
How do you balance feeling abundant with the discipline of spending less and saving more? Leave me a comment below.
Thank you, Tracy Beth & Maria Aum, for the Q.
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