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3 Simple Steps to Slashing Your Bills

3 Simple Steps To Slashing Your Bills

Are you spending too much money and finding it hard to get ahead? If you overspend and are looking for ways to save money, you are going to love this guest post by Jon Dulin from MoneySmartGuides.com.  Check it out here:

3 Simple Steps to Slashing Your Bill - Learn how to slash your bills and take your financial planning into your own hands #budgeting #budgets #savemoney
3 Simple Steps to Slashing Your Bill

If you are like most people, money always is tight.

No matter what you do, it seems that you are struggling to get ahead financially.

Chances are you haven’t tried the trick I am about to teach you.

I have found there is one trick that I use that saves me the most money.

It does take a little bit of work to set up, but once you do, it becomes a habit.

If you are willing to put in a little work, you will be amazed at how much money you can save using this trick.

And once you make this savings trick a habit, you can begin to use other ideas to cut your monthly spending to save even more money.

Are you ready to get started?

The simple 3 step process is outlined below:

How To Cut Your Bills Easily In 3 Steps

#1. Define What Is Important To You

The first step is to figure out what your goals or values are.

What brings you the most pleasure? Where do you want to be in 5 or 10 years financially?

Think about this for a little and write down your answers. Then wait a week.

Come back to your answers and read them through.

Do they resonate with you? Do you get excited reading them?

If the answer is yes, then you are ready to jump to step 2.

If you answered no, you need to try again.

Maybe your answers weren’t detailed enough?

For example, maybe you answered that going out to eat was something that brings you pleasure.

But you now see it doesn’t resonate with you. You need to ask yourself what is it about eating out that brings you joy?

After more thinking, you realize it is your friends being there that matter.

Now ask yourself if just hanging out with your friends would bring you joy.

If so, then you know that they are the key, and not eating out.

Or, it could be that what you think you value you really don’t.

Maybe you thought that having the latest technology was something you value, but now you realize it is not.

Repeat this step until you find your true answers.

#2. Review Your Spending

The second step is to start reviewing your spending while keeping your goals and values in mind.

Look through each purchase you recently made. Just scan through last month’s bank or credit card statement.
What do you see?

Do you see your spending in line with your values? Or do you see wild spending without regard to what you want or what makes you happy?
Chances are you see wild spending.

Don’t get upset if you see this. You spent that money because you weren’t fully aware of your goals and values. Now that you are, you can make changes going forward.

Highlight all of your spending that doesn’t align with your values and try to think back on these purchases.

Did they bring you any joy?

Most likely this wasteful spending was “in the moment” spending that made you feel good for a very short period of time.

These are the items you are going to work to avoid spending money on in the next step.

But before you move to the third step, total up the amount you spent on what you would now consider wasteful spending.

I want you to see how much you spent.

Be ready, the total will be shocking to you. But again, don’t let it get you down.

Use it as a lesson learned as you begin to make smarter spending choices.

#3. Take Action

Now you are ready for the third step.

When you do go out and are planning to buy something, pause for a moment before picking it up or putting it into your shopping cart.

Think back to your goals and values.

Ask yourself if buying this goes against your goals or helps you reach your goals.

At first, you might have to spend a few minutes thinking purchases through. This is a good thing.

We tend to buy on emotion. By pausing and thinking, we let the rational side of our mind catch up and are less likely to have buyer’s remorse.

Your goal is to eliminate as much wasteful spending as possible.

But the catch is to not eliminate everything. If you do this, you will resent this process, give up, and go back to your reckless spending.

Instead, make small progress every day.

If you need a coffee to get you going, buy the coffee even if it doesn’t add value to your life.

But start working on not needing the coffee or spending the money.

Maybe you can brew your own coffee a few times a week to save some money.

Maybe you need to have an honest moment with yourself and admit there are days when you need a coffee to survive and there are days when you don’t need it.

You can then skip coffee on the unneeded days.

For me, my weakness was soda. I needed caffeine. I was addicted to it.

But one day I decided to give up soda.

The first day was brutal. By 1 PM I had a headache that lasted the rest of the day.

The next day, there was no headache, but I was in a fog all day.

But by the third day, I was fine. And as the days progressed, I had more energy and was sleeping better at night.

So start to be aware of your spending and make decisions to cut back or cut out things that don’t add value to your life.

As you practice this step more and more, it will get easier and easier for you.

Putting This Process In Action

To really help you understand this process, I am going to walk you through the third step.

Assume my goal is financial freedom. I want to retire by age 55.

When I am out shopping, I see a really good deal on a couch.

Before I do anything I ask myself if I need a couch. If I don’t, I move along.

If I do need a couch, I evaluate more. I think about my goal of retiring early and how this purchase can help me reach my goal or hurt my chances.

I don’t make my decision based solely on price. There are too many things made cheaply today that don’t last.

These things tend to be the lowest priced. I would rather spend $1,000 on a couch that will last me 15 years than a $500 couch that I have to replace in 5 years.

Once I determine if the couch is of good value and meets my goal, I make the purchase.

Final Thoughts

As I mentioned at the beginning, I’ve been using this trick to save a lot of money over the years.

And I know it will help you save money too.

After each week, you will start to notice money isn’t as tight as it was before and after a few months, you will begin to see large changes to your bank balance and your happiness.

You will have money left over at the end of the month.

You will be happier too because you are satisfying the hunger inside of you.

I encourage you to take the time to go through these steps because once you do, you too can be saving a lot of money every year going forward.

Author Bio: Jon Dulin is a personal finance expert helping people improve their finances for over 15 years. You can read more of his work at MoneySmartGuides.com where he helps readers pay off debt and start building wealth so they can achieve their dreams.

Jon Dulin

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How to Get Ready for Christmas and Stay on Budget

How to Get Ready for Christmas and Stay on Budget

How to Get Ready for Christmas and Stay on Budget - Do you end up using credit cards at Christmas time every year? Learn how to plan ahead and get ready for Christmas but also stick to your budget. #Christmas #Christmasbudget #Budget

It is that time to start thinking about the Holidays. And yes, learning how to get ready for Christmas can help eliminate stress in your life and your budget. Let’s face it, Christmas can cause a huge strain on your budget if you are not prepared.

According to a study by the National Retail Federation, consumers will spend $1007.24 on Christmas this year, which is up 4.1% from last year.

Regardless, it is best to make a plan and be ready now before it gets too close to your family parties and the actual date. If you wait you end up becoming a last-minute shopper and most likely spend more than what you were planning because at that point you have no choice.

If you want to take the stress out of the Holidays, it is best to prepare during November. In fact, this year, I am planning on finishing and wrapping all of my presents before December 1st. The only way for this to happen is to be prepared.

I have been planning my Christmas budget all year and I save certain accounts specifically for Christmas present and activities. The two main sources of my Christmas budget are from my Ibotta earning over the year and my Poshmark earnings. I am also selling on Facebook and have put my earnings in a cash envelope specifically for Christmas.

A few other side hustles I have done to set money aside for Christmas are VIPKID (currently making the most here) and User Tester (love this one, but can’t always qualify for tests so  haven’t made that much.)

Anyway, the reason I am mentioning my side hustles in this post is to show you I consider this extra money and I am setting it aside for Christmas. If you haven’t saved over the year and are finding yourself falling short, consider going through your house and finding items you no longer want or need and selling them to give you an extra cushion.

You could also consider doing something part-time before the Holidays. I’m not suggesting you need to go over the top, but these are just ideas if you need extra money. I recommend only buying gifts you can afford or possibly making gifts if you are super short on cash.

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How to Enjoy Luxuries in Life on a Budget

Luxuries in Life (on a budget)

How to enjoy the luxuries in life on a budget #savemoney #budget #moneytips
How to enjoy the luxuries in life on a budget

Are you sick of hearing your friends talk about going to the spa? And they always seem to have the cutest outfits, shoes, and purses? Meanwhile, you are on a budget and can’t even afford a cup of soup at the fancy restaurant they went to last weekend.

Maybe you are frugal and don’t find the value of spending money on luxuries or you are in a habit of taking the bottom for yourself because you don’t feel like you deserve luxuries in life. However, you do deserve luxuries and you don’t have to spend a small fortune to give yourself life’s fullest comforts.

Yet, even if you are on a budget you can still enjoy the luxuries life has to offer. With the list below you can save money and still enjoy life. Are you ready to enjoy the luxuries in life on a budget?

In this post you will learn about enjoying luxuries in life on a budget in the following categories:

  • luxuries at home
  • designer clothes and accessories
  • fancy hair care
  • big-ticket items

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Last Minute DIY Halloween Costume – Winnie the Pooh

Last Minute DIY Halloween Costume- Winnie the Pooh - Are you searching for an easy DIY Halloween costume idea? Check out this costume tutorial for a DIY Winnie the Pooh costume. #Halloween #DIYcostume #cheapcostumeidea
Last-Minute DIY Halloween Costume- Winnie the Pooh

Last-Minute DIY Halloween Costume – Pooh Bear

Are you stressed out about your Halloween costume? Maybe you waited too long and can’t find anything you like or the right size is “sold out.”  Sometimes with our busy “mom” schedules, Halloween is an after-thought that we know we will eventually get too.

Then BOOM a Halloween event pops up two weeks before Halloween and you realize you never bought or made a costume. This can feel like a “frantic” mom moment, but today I am going to show you how to make a super easy and cute Winnie the Pooh costume to take the stress out of Halloween so you can have fun and enjoy it! The best part is the costume literally cost me $3 to make!

I got the idea for this costume because I volunteered to be my son’s room parent this year. I’m on the PTA and I secretly wanted to be able to attend all of his first-grade parties. So I get the honor of planning the Halloween party for his class and in the spirit of Halloween I will dress up too, to make it more fun for the kids.

I wanted something “non-spooky” and kid-friendly. And let’s face it, what kid doesn’t love Winnie the Pooh? I even asked my son if he wanted me to buy a spider girl costume to match him or dress up like that silly ole’ bear! My seven-year-old chose the latter. (I’m so glad he is still into kid’s stuff.)

Frugal Halloween Costume Idea

You all know I am frugal and I’m going to give ya’ll some price details! This costume cost me a whopping $3 in total. Considering the fact, I already had a mustard yellowish colored sweatshirt from old navy and an old headband.

However, I got my yellow sweatshirt on Old Navy’s deal of the day for $10 – so $13 if you want to count that in the price. Not bad!

So let’s get down to this silly-nilly business of making the costume.

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Frugal Fall Ideas and Activities for the Family

40 frugal fall activities for the family

40 Frugal Fall Activities and Ideas for Your Family #fall #autumn #fallactivities #family
40 Frugal Fall Activities and Ideas for Your Family

Do you love Fall? It is absolutely one of my favorite times of the year! One main reason is my birthday is in the fall – Yay birthday week! Haha!  Also, fall is just cozy and fun.

I enjoy doing things with my kids during every season, but I especially love the fall. Summer here in Michigan can get hot and muggy. And sometimes, it is a pain to take two kids outside in the heat. Yet, fall here in Michigan tends to cool down (although it was 90 a few days ago!) and we can enjoy the outdoors as a family.

Fall is a great time to find fall activities for preschoolers, fall activities for toddlers, and fall activities for school-age children. Basically, these fall activities listed below are intended for the family. These fall ideas will have you wishing it was pumpkin spice season all year long!

So grab your sweatshirt and blanky and cuddle up to read this list. Don’t forget to print the free fall activity planner at the bottom of the post so you can make sure to check everything off your fall bucket list.

Most of all, enjoy your family! Kids grow up way too quickly so we need to take advantage of the time they still want to be seen with us! LOL

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7 Fun & quirky ways to save money

Learn my Seven Fun & Quirky Ways to Save Money

7 Fun and Quirky Ways to Save Money #savemoney #moneytips #frugal
7 Fun and Quirky Ways to Save Money

Do you need to save money? Wouldn’t it be nice to have some extra dough in your pocket at the end of each month?

Did you know saving money can also be fun?

Most people think “BLAH” when they hear the word budget. However, a budget can help you keep your finances on track and set you up on your road to financial freedom.

Do you want to retire early and travel the world? Maybe you want to invest so your money can grow.

These seven quirky things below will help you save more and reach your financial goals sooner. Plus, they are quirky and funny so why not give them a try?

Related: 10 Things Only a Frugal Living Weirdo Would Understand

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