Being behind in your savings goals can be downright discouraging. You may feel less
secure about your future and worry that you won’t be able to recover the lost ground. But
you can take a sigh of relief because there’s a way to get back on track your savings
If you haven’t been saving… you know it good and well.
And you probably won’t be shocked if it is brought to your attention.
But what can be shocking, is seeing that you don’t have enough money to retire or you are short
of cash in an emergency. Sometimes we just don’t realize the effects of not saving when right
now, at the moment, everything is going alright.
But think of being behind in your savings as being in debt to yourself. We should be paying
ourselves just as often as we pay our bills. You owe yourself a portion of all the money you bring
But don’t worry! Even if you haven’t saved a nickel, you can still turn things around, recover
some lost ground, and get back on track with your savings.
What To Do When You are Behind in Saving
Increase the amount you save
Generally, I recommend that families with kids pay themselves 10% of their income.
But if you are single with no kids, or an empty nester, you can save 20% of your income.
These are always good starting points, but if you are behind, it’ll be good to get
aggressive with the amount of money that you are paying to yourself.
If you are over 50, and your retirement savings is smaller that what you would like, you
can double the amount that you contribute to your 401k or even contribute the maximum
amount allowed by the law.
Perhaps the reason why you weren’t paying yourself in the first place was because you
didn’t think you had the money to do so. If that is the case, then it’s a good time you
track your expenses and find places where your money is slipping out of the door. If you
still aren’t able to increase your savings and have enough money to take care of your
expenses, then the next tip will be exactly what you need.
Increase your income
Sometimes you just got to know when it’s time to get your hustle on. When your are
behind in your savings you may have to increase your income in order to catch up. You
have it in you, you just have to be willing to do whatever it takes to secure your future. If
you owe yourself money, but you are concerned about being able to take care of your
expenses, start brainstorming of ways that will allow you to increase your cash flow.
You can always generate more money by picking up a part-time job or starting a
business from home. Think of something that you are good at or something that you like
to do. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate idea if you don’t want it to be, it just has to be
good enough to make some money. If you make your family’s favorite pies or cake, start
selling those bad boys. You’d be surprised at what folks are willing to pay for a good
homemade dessert. You can babysit children, or create something to sell. Subcontract
the skills that you use at your full-time job. For example, if you are a teacher, you can
tutor students in the evening for some extra cash. There is a ton of money out there to
be made — so go and get yourself some.
It is so important for you to secure your future, you never want to be at the mercy of your current
income stream. If something were to go array, you will want to know that you have enough
money stashed away to take care you and your family until things turn around again. And as for
the future, the sooner you start paying yourself, the more money you can collect in interest —
and you’ll be making money while you sleep.
Don’t be discouraged about what you haven’t done in the past. With just one decision, you can
change your financial future and security. If you haven’t been paying yourself, start now. You will
surely thank yourself later.
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