While it’s important to have money saved for long-term goals, like retirement, it’s also a good idea to set aside money for short-term goals, such as buying a car, going on vacation or just having extra wiggle room in case of an emergency. Whatever your short-term goal is, there are ways you can majorly boost your savings by the end of this month.
1. Set Goals and Visualize Yourself Achieving Them
It’s one thing to say you’d like to “save more money.” It’s another thought process entirely to state a specific number and time frame. Start with a goal to save $1,000, or even $100, this month.
Then take the next step and actually envision yourself achieving that goal. Also, think about how that level of financial freedom and security will feel to you. What would you splurge on knowing you have a comfortable nest egg?
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2. Consider a Spending Freeze
Although you may be envisioning yourself as wealthy, it’s important to watch your spending carefully to free up extra money each week. You may want to take a page from your pandemic playbook and eliminate eating out and entertainment expenses.
Right now, many people are engaging in “revenge spending” or adopting a you-only-live-once attitude that can result in overspending, especially on trips and entertainment. If your goal is to save, halt these activities for 30 days. Having survived more than a year without these luxuries, you can make it another month if saving money is your priority.
3. Create a Budget
Even once you cut impulse or revenge spending, you won’t know how much you can save until you write a budget. Apps like Mint and YNAB (You Need a Budget) make it simple to track expenses, even if you’ve never written or managed a budget before.
4. Make Savings Deposits Automatic
Once you’ve eliminated unnecessary expenses and written a budget based on how much money you need each month for housing, utilities, gas, food and other necessities, schedule the rest of your income to go into your savings account automatically.
If you’re settling for interest rates of 0.01%, look around at some online banks or credit unions that offer 0.60% interest or more. You won’t get rich or hit your savings goal through these interest rates, but you will earn more over time — and that’s a smart money move.
5. Consider Ways To Make More Money
What if you’ve saved every penny you can from your current income but still haven’t reached your goal of saving extra money this month? It’s time to manifest more money.
Your mindset is an important key to earning more money. Blogger Dena Joan of Live, Love, Simple begins every day with affirmations such as: “Money is flying at me from all directions.” This “abundance mindset,” as Joan calls it, opens your eyes to new opportunities and can help you become a money magnet. “When my thoughts became full of abundance, prosperity and confidence, that became my reality,” she wrote.
You can manifest money in many different ways:
A raise at work
A side gig (or several side gigs)
Selling items you no longer need
A new business
As you brainstorm ideas, keep your mind open to new opportunities to build up your savings. Then put any additional income into your savings account until you achieve your goal.
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Gabrielle Olya contributed to the reporting for this article.
This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 5 Ways To Supercharge Your Short-Term Savings in September