First Person: Saving Is Not a Fad

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Apparently, American spend too much money and don't save enough . Yeah, tell me something I don't know. In addition, it appears that Americans save less when the economy is doing well. Again, this is not a shock, but it does suggest to me that our country is not particularly disciplined when it comes to saving. This news has a personal impact because it tells me how I am doing compared to my fellow citizen. It also tells me that future financial decisions of government leaders may be made based on a society that does not save particularly well. Truthfully, I don't know if that is good or bad news.

Saving instead of spending

I am a saver and I always have been. When it comes to college tuition and retirement, my saving patterns have not changed for years. When I get a tax refund, I do not head to the mall. That money goes into a savings account. Granted, I do my share of saving and "stimulating" the economy. However, I do not buy into the philosophy that I need to spend as much as possible. The credit card debt in this country suggests that Americans are not spending to stimulate the economy. They spend because they have an addiction to products and entertainment.

All about the job

Granted, I have been fortunate in that I have maintained employment, even during the toughest years of the economic downturn. Frankly, it is very hard to understand the ups and downs of the economy and save money based on my "consumer confidence." I have a job, which means that I save consistently. Period. If I didn't have a job I would obviously save differently. In general, I will not use economic difficulties in the general society as an excuse to stop saving.

Setting up a system

Sometimes I wonder if more people just need to set up a monthly system. All of my saving occurs without effort on my part. My retirement and college funds are fed each month by deductions that automatically come out of my checking account. Therefore, this type of saving behavior has become ingrained into my budgetary psyche. Obviously I could go online and change my contribution amounts. However, that is not likely unless something changes. If I had to write a check and put it into savings each month, I do not know if I would get it done.

Sometimes I would like to spend more. However, I resist that temptation. Saving is not a fad.

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