Life is expensive these days, especially in you’re living in a booming country like Oz. Coffee sets you back almost $5 a cup, rent is through the roof and well, you still want to indulge in late nights out and holidays abroad. But let’s be real, us Aussies definitely use money like toilet paper most of the time. UBank has just released new research stating that 2 million Aussies have less than $1000 in savings, with one in three admitting all their money is gone by payday. The biggest culprits? You guessed it, us.
Unfortunately, us young people aren’t always so thrifty with our money, but to be real, we were never really taught how to save. In light of these statistics (cause we know we are all guilty of being big spenders sometimes), Dr Phil Harris from Melbourne Unis Business and Economics Faculty has some tips. He states that the reason why we struggle to save is because many Aussies are “actually quite disconnected from their future selves”.
So thanks to Dr Phil, we have five simple ways to retrain our brains to save smarter, so say goodbye to wasteful spending and hello to future cash.
#1 Physically Visualise Your Saving Goals
This is pretty simple and straightforward, right? By simply visualising your saving goals and viewing them regularly, you can help rain your brain to achieving that end goal. This can be as simple as visuals reminders, like setting a photo of your savings goal as your lock screen. So whether it be a new car, a holiday or your dream home, it will be within reach in no time.
#2 Make Saving A Habit Vs. A Chore
It takes the average person 66 days to turn a new behaviour into a habit, so rather than jumping into an extensive saving plan day one, start small. Whether it be $2 a week into your savings account, you will actually be training your brain to put money away at scheduled times. Once you make the habit you can increase your amount, and saving will no longer be an unattainable illusion.
#3 Go “Old School” With Cash
Cash is actually a super useful tool in saving. Take it from a girl who did a year exchange in Europe. I had $25 000 in savings and I had to make it last. I would take out a set amount of cash each month that I would dedicate to spending and the rest was kept away for rent and future spending. The reason why this works? Psychologically, it’s easier to spend money on a card, because you never actually see the money leaving you hands. And don’t be scared of those high value notes, the more you have the less inclined you’ll be to breaking them and handing them over.
#4 Write Down What You’re Spending And Share
The latest research shows that our social connection shape the value we assign to out spending. Letting you friend into the ins and outs of your spending habits might be a scary thought, but they will help you to reshape your spending habits. They will be able to rationalise your spending habits , because impulse spending relies on emotions, and you don’t want to let down your bestie.
#5 Visualise Your “Future Self”
Where do you see yourself in ten years? Write down what you want to achieve, where you want to be, where you would like to live and what countries you would like to explore. They more in touch you can be with your “future self” the more likely you will be to save for them, and the more future focused your decisions will be.
Image Sources: The Oklahoma, BBMLive, Fat Movie Guy.