You’ve probably done the research on how to save already. At the end of it, these articles are really just saying “just do it, there’s no other way.”
But saving is actually harder than it sounds. How can we save money when our every dollar has been allocated for rent, bills, and loan repayments? And then whatever’s left, we end up spending on treats because we deserved them for all our hard work.
But after we get our treat, we find ourselves back to waiting for the next payday, stressing over rent, bills, and loan repayments. We just can’t seem to win.
Now, pursuing every goal can be stressful. It’s exciting to do the groundwork, the planning, and the dreaming. However, doing the actual work can get tiring, overwhelming and stressful. The same thing happens when it comes to saving. The idea is there, but getting to the end is the tough part.
But to make it all okay, to make it all feel like we’re doing the right thing, we should be celebrating our small wins. These small wins could be a compliment, an event that happened to go your way, or a pat in the back for a job well done. They may not be the achievement of our goal, but at least these small wins motivate us and make us feel good.
Think of the last time you had a small win. Perhaps it was the time you were right when you and your friend were arguing over who the main actor was in The Godfather. It might have been the time you got called in for a job interview. Or maybe it was the time someone complimented you for your cooking. These small wins give us a sense of achievement. They make us feel like we can conquer the world.
What if we could translate the feeling we get after a small win into how we save money?
That’s what happens when we take on a money-saving challenge. The idea behind money-saving challenges is that they break down our goal into smaller, bite-sized goals, making them easier to reach. Whenever we achieve the goal for the week, we already win a part of our financial goal. Whenever we reach a goal, we get a small win.
Sure, there’s a chance we might stop in the middle of the challenge. Things come up, and these challenges become our least priority. That’s not a sign of failure though. If you stopped halfway through, we still saved money more than we would have if we didn’t take the challenge at all.
The 52-week Saving Challenge
Take the 52-week saving challenge for example. For 52 weeks, you’re meant to save money that corresponds to the week you’re in. For instance, you have $1 in the first week, $2 in the second week, $3 in the third week, and so on until you reach $52 in week 52. Each week will get you a small win. And at the end of the year, you end up saving about $1,300, which is such a big win! If you end up stopping in the middle, that’s $750 more than we have today.
The $5 Saving Challenge
Another money-saving challenge is the “$5 saving challenge” where you save every $5 you get. If you’re not much of a cash person, like me, then this might not be the best challenge to take on. If you do use cash all the time, then you might want to give this a go and potentially save $1300 in a year. You get a small win every time you get $5 to put into a jar or your savings account.
Frollo’s Money-Saving Challenges
Frollo also has fun money-saving challenges you could take. Frollo offers different short-term challenges so you can take instant gratification from saving within a month.
Frollo’s Drop the Coffee Shop Challenge
“Drop the Coffee Shop” challenge, for example, challenges you to save $20-$25 a week for a month by bringing your own coffee to work or uni instead of buying from a cafe. If you take this challenge for a year, you could potentially save $1000 in total.
Frollo’s Grocery Challenge
The “Grocery Challenge” on the other hand challenges you to spend less than your previous month’s grocery expenses. For instance, you could challenge yourself to spend $200 less than what you did last month. If you stick to this challenge, you could potentially save $2400 in a year.
One of the pains of being in the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle is that we constantly find ourselves stressing about money. How will we afford dinner? Where is money for rent coming from? Will there be enough to pay for the Netflix subscription? All these flock our minds, leaving us with sleepless nights.
By taking on these money-saving challenges, you give yourself a higher chance of getting out of the paycheck to paycheck cycle. Small wins will help you reach your goals. Like they said, taking baby steps would already be a bigger leap you would have otherwise done. So go on and win something small today.