In fact right now we are 5 days into the month and I have spent LESS THAN $5. Yes, you read that correctly… $5!!! Admittedly this number will rise once some time passes.
I have become addicted to spending as little money as possible!
Now every time I dont eat out and have a homemade meal instead or drink tap water instead of coffee, I hear multiple “cha ching” sounds in my head. AND I LOVE IT!
For a little while now I have been reading over at the Mr. Money Mustache blog about frugality and the difference saving little amounts of money at a time can have over a longer period of time can have. For example, every single day I was spending $1.75 on coffee, Twice! This means for a year I was spending $1277.50 on coffee per year. Over a 10 year period this amounts to $12775.00. This money could be put immediately towards a mortgage, and it comes right off of the principle. You’re effectively earning a 4-5% rate of return on your money because you aren’t paying it in interest!
Because I refuse to eat out anymore, whenever my friends and I hang out we hang out at one of our houses and make food or whatever. And the other day I started talking to one of my good friends about retirement. As you can imagine he looked at me with utter befuddlement. His gears were turning inside his head, I could see him thinking “how is he going to make millions in the next 10 years to retire so early!”
I then went on to explain that retirement didn’t have to be about making an exorbitant amount of money. Like the diet change ive been trying to make, I started explaining how retirement could be a lifestyle change! If you can live on less, you can retire on less!
I saw him eating this info up. Then the big question came. “How do I decrease my expenses to retire early?” I told him how I shop, how I drive, how it eat, how the things i’ve learned to do for hobbies dont cost much at all (currently working on hiking the 46 Adirondack high peaks).
Wouldnt you know it, the excuses came as quick as he could spit them out.
Apparently he would rather work himself to the bone for the rest of his life than just for a short period of time and retire early…. I guess I see his logic?
All I thought to myself is “you have all of the tools to retire early, all you have to do is DO”
Christ, jump into the F^&*ing thing!
All he could think about was how he couldn’t give up these “indulgences” …… And, HOW HE COULDNT BE A DO’ER!!!
Too many times people are too scared or intimidated to do something they haven’t done before, when all this does is prevent you from moving forward.
I love doing new things i’ve never done before. A quick search on google or Youtube will give you more information on anything you could ever possibly want to do.
Literally almost anything you want to do you can “DO”!
Ill give you a list of things I have done today
– worked a 10 hour day
– didn’t spend a dime
– drank a lot of water (simple yes, but hardly anyone drinks enough, and the health benefits are huge!)
– got all of my tax info submitted
– researched how to write better blog posts!
– rocked a one hour crossfit class
– made a delicious homemade dinner for me and my fiance (done with the food I bought in bulk to save even more!)
– Took the trash out at one of my apartments
– And to top it off I wrote this blog in an effort to “DO” what I learned earlier (maybe it worked maybe it didn’t)
There were other things I could have done like going out to dinner with a bunch of the crossfiters to a nice italian restaurant… but this would have been counterproductive to almost every single one of my goals. Consistency is key to moving forward and succeeding.
There are some tips that i’ve compiled so far that can help you get on your way to DOING!
– pre cook all of your meals, if you workout, rice is cheap and can be made in bulk with any meat and vegetable
– get yourself a big water bottle, drink water instead of coffee… trust me after you break the addiction you will thank me
– I carry around a little notepad in my pocket, every time I do something productive I write it down. As small as it might be reminding yourself of how good you’re doing gives you a lot of momentum.
– Pay off any debt you have. Im sure your mortgage is at least somewhere between 4-5%. Paying that off early with all these savings you are making will guarentee you that rate of return because you arnt paying it in interest.
– Find something you want to do, a small project on pinterest perhaps, google how to do it… and just do it. This is a great exercise in creativity. A few months ago I started my own aquaponics fish and veggie garden. I didn’t know anything about it, but there are plenty of other people on the internet that have done it and will share with you how to get started.
– most of these things can be done for cheap by finding materials on craigslist.
– start some sort of IRA especially if your employer has a percentage of your wage that they will match.
– Ditch the cable, be productive instead of watching TV
– Lower your electric bill by turning off lights and appliances
Most people dont retire by making all of their money in one shot, its done one dollar at a time, one day at a time.
In future posts ill go into more detail on different ways to save money. But in this post I really just wanted to hammer home the point that sometimes you just have to jump in head first and do the damn thing… learn as you go.
All of this is in an effort to show you guys that its really not that hard to get started. Im leading by example, using real world numbers, I will reach my goals and show you guys every step of the way how i’m going to do it.
Like I said this blog was an effort to write better and be a bit more engaging to the reader, while still being easy to read. If you guys have any advice, I am open to constructive criticism as well as future blog topics you guys may want me to write about. Or share some money saving tips that you have learned!