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How to stop mindlessly spending money and learn how to plan


Almost every working person is familiar with this feeling of bewilderment a week after receiving a salary: “Where did the money go?”. Money tends to run out quickly and imperceptibly, even when spending is more or less controlled, and wealth is growing. Not everyone knows how to manage money competently, but it's real to learn how to do it.

To start with, it is necessary to find out how many useless purchases are made. The next, tenth lipstick or the next phone case you like, the inability to walk past the fast food counter and not buy yourself a portion, sugary drinks, things you like, but impractical in everyday life, a sudden trip to a restaurant, frequent lateness as a reason to use more expensive taxi services instead of public transport – such useless everyone will have a lot of expenses in a month.

The more money a person has, the more he spends it. With the growth of the income, expenditures also grow, only a few of the people manage to stay at the current level of expenditures even after their financial well-being improves. Our environment and fashion often require us to spend more. The influence of social networks, fashion, picture of “beautiful life” on the page of another popular blogger makes many people make “the purchases of prestige” in order to be no worse than others and demonstrate their own financial viability. 


To cope with the “waste” of money on momentary desires, you first need to figure out which of these desires you can sacrifice without harming yourself. For example, the need to have lunch in a cafe is often the only way to eat during the working day, so giving it up is not an option. A certain dress code and the need to buy clothes appropriate to your position will also not work around. But you can limit the use of fast food, harmful drinks, snacks and chips, which cannot be called healthy food, as well as the purchase of “cute trinkets”. To approach the purchase of clothing more carefully and try not to fall for a variety of marketing tricks.

It is very useful to keep a record of your expenses and plan a budget for a month, a week and even a day, make a list of necessary purchases and not take more money with you than you need – this will save you from spontaneous purchases. If you record every day literally every expense during the day, you can understand what kind of "little things" money is spent on.

If financial circumstances allow, it is worth starting to save money, creating a "monetary safety cushion". Economists recommend saving at least 5-10 percent of the amount of monthly income. 

There is a “50/30/20” scheme, according to which 50 percent of monthly income is spent on the necessary needs of the family (food, utilities and other monthly payments, transport, necessary medicines), 30% – non-essential expenses (entertainment, unforeseen expenses, sports, etc.), and the remaining 20 are postponed, forming a “pillow security”. Depending on the amount of monthly income, the proportions of this scheme can be changed in their own way. However, if the expenses for the necessary amount to 80% of the monthly income, the “50/30/20” scheme will not work. Here it may be appropriate to recommend investing at least 5-10 percent of the salary in a “safety cushion”.

If a large purchase is to be made, it is much more practical to gradually save the amount necessary for it for 3-4 months without compromising the budget, than “to spend” the whole salary on it at once and the rest of the month to live in debt.

“Penny-wise, but pound-foolish”: think carefully before buying something suspiciously cheap. Frequently such savings inflicts new expenditures after a cheap thing of poor quality gets out of order.


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