Choose Something to Look Forward To
We talked about freezing spending , allowing ourselves to buy good things from time to time, and outlining our monetary goals to help us shape the right financial mindset to save money . Another strategy I like is overcoming the urge for immediate gratification by choosing something to look forward to.
It could be something that happens at the end of a day, week, month, or year, something that you budget for – be it a $ 5 movie ticket on Sunday, or a $ 100 pair of shoes.
For me, this is a trip I take in December with a friend. This has already been paid for, but I know I want to set aside money for the next six months to do it as stress-free as possible. And for the past few weeks, when I thought about buying something casual, I thought about how much better I would feel saving money for the trip.
It is also interesting to consider all the excursions that we will go, the places where we will stop, and the people with whom we will meet. There is an added benefit: Research has shown that the time before a trip is often as enjoyable as the trip itself. This is the power of anticipation – you get as much pleasure from presenting the aforementioned excursions and hotels as from actually meeting them.
It doesn’t have to be a big trip or even a trip. Another common option for me is having dinner or a drink with friends – I know it is coming, so I try to limit my meals outside the home during the week. As Audrey Gonzalez writes for The Financial Diet , it can be as simple as painting your nails during your favorite show every week, or a reminder on your phone when the book you want to read will come out. A little treat you can look forward to will help you relive the present.