14 Clever Ways To Trick Yourself Into Saving Money

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HOW TO TRICK YOURSELF INTO SAVING MONEY

I know, I know. Saving money sucks, doesn’t it?

But it doesn’t need to be such a painful task because did you know that you can trick yourself into saving money? That’s what I did when I realized my spending was off the charts!

I never used to think twice about my spending because I could just get another paycheck the following month, right?

Well, not exactly!

With each month that went by, I checked my bank account and got a rude shock to see my funds diminishing…I used to barely make it from paycheck to paycheck!

But, I had no clue what I was actually spending it on! Deep down I probably knew that on some level I was seriously overspending, but I continued to spend because Friday night drinks are fun and those shoes were on sale and blah blah blah.

Basically I thought I was making myself happy buying what I wanted when I wanted. But as it turned out, I was spending money because I liked the feeling it gave me in that moment.

Have you ever found yourself doing this too?

Well don’t worry because today, I’m going to help you go from being a super spender to a savvy saver by sharing some simple money saving hacks that have changed my life.

I never used to be the best saver in the world. But I’ve used these hacks to help me save more money and build wealth without stressing and overcomplicating things. And if you already have some savings, you can still follow along and boost your savings even more!

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So without further ado, here are 14 clever ways to trick yourself into saving money every single month!


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1. ACT LIKE YOU HAVE NO MONEY

As you may know by now, I used to spend money willy-nilly, to the point where it started to get pretty bad and out of control…

One time, when I got a raise at work, there was a miscommunication where I thought my raise would come into effect a month later than it did. So for a month there I had all this extra money that I wouldn’t normally have, but had already paid my bills etc. for that month.

I discovered that by accidentally living on the wage I thought I had for that month, I had all this money leftover to do what I wanted with! So I thought well why not continue to act and think like I’m on my old wage, and put that extra cash into savings.

So I did!

I’ll admit that this only lasted a few months from memory, and it wasn’t until much later on that I truly mastered my finances, but it worked for some time – acting like I had less money than I did!

So next time you get a raise at work or have some extra money you wouldn’t normally have, trick yourself into thinking you have less, and use it to save or invest.

2. START A MONEY CHALLENGE ASAP

Another way to trick yourself into saving money is to put yourself on a savings challenge. It’s a super motivating way (fun even!) to follow along with a challenge, watching the dollars go up.

There are heaps of money challenges around, but you can start with this one to help you fast-track your savings goals. You can download it completely free and watch your savings grow to $1,000 over the next 31 days!

With this tracker, you can color in order or at random depending on how much you can put towards your savings on that day. So if you can do the smaller amount of $5 one day, go ahead and color a $5 box. And if you find you have extra money other days, color in a $10 or $20.

It’s up to you! Keep going until you reach your goal of $1,000.

3. USE A FOOL-PROOF BUDGET PLANNER

I’ll admit that I went years without properly budgeting or using a budget planner to keep on top of my finances. But once I started reading budgeting tips from the experts and implemented some clever strategies, my money situation changed drastically!

And it wasn’t until I started using a budget planner that our savings started to grow exponentially. My husband and I were finally able to save our first $50,000 by paying off debt and finding ways to boost our income. My budget planner is 100% free for you to download and start using!

In the planner you’ll find features to help you meticulously monitor all your income sources and expenses. With a clear visualization of your income, you can easily determine a more accurate amount to allocate towards your fixed and variable expenses. See it for yourself!

I’ve also created beautiful weekly printables to help steer your budget and savings in the right direction. These complimentary printables are thoughtfully designed to deliver immediate and tangible outcomes, while providing you with a renewed sense of confidence in your financial journey. I know you’ll love using them as much as I do!

THIS BUDGET PLANNER IS EXCLUSIVE TO MY SUBSCRIBERS! YOU CAN GRAB YOUR FREE COPY RIGHT HERE.

4. CALCULATE YOUR PURCHASES WITH YOUR PAID WORK

This is a clever budgeting strategy to use when you want to make a pricey purchase.

So, how does it work.

Let’s say you’ve been eyeing that Louis Vuitton bag for $1,290. Before you take the plunge and buy it, work out how many hours of work it would take before you spend up big.

Let’s do some math…

Example:

Say you earn $27 per hour (after tax) – it would take you approximately 48 hours of work to pay for the bag. That’s about 6 days’ worth of standard work.

To some people, this is totally worth it for the bag. And to others, it may not be worth it at all.

I’ve mentioned in another post about how a friend and I would spend a lot of our pay on nice lunch outings to escape the office. We would spend around $26 each on lunch, twice a week. That’s $52 a week and $2,704 a year! And what’s more, on the days we weren’t dining out, we were still buying lunches from the food court downstairs, which was just far too delicious and convenient!

Then, because we had so much to talk about at the end of a long stressful day, we’d treat ourselves to a drink and comfort food after work, most days we would do this. We absolutely fell into the lifestyle inflation trap! The more we earned, the more we’d spend. Nice clothes, makeup, drinks, lunches, dinners, shoes, you name it!

What’s my point to all of this??

You can save hundreds of dollars a month when you swap out these expenses. Instead of treating ourselves almost every day, my friend and I stuck to one lunch outing a week. And we started to bring our lunches in from home, while eating and catching up in the local park. It took us awhile to get to this point, but once we saw how much of our paycheck was going to food and drink, we decided to make some changes.

WANT TO SAVE MORE MONEY ON YOUR LUNCHES EVERY DAY??

I understand that using the workplace microwave isn’t exactly a fun experience! This seems to be a sentiment shared by many…

Well! What if you didn’t need to rely on the work microwave to heat your delicious home lunches?

Just like me, you have the option of using a compact crockpot to conveniently warm up your delectable homemade meals wherever you are! This way you get to savor a delicious and nutritious lunch without having to shell out $10 to $12 daily at the food court. And by doing so, you can potentially save a staggering $2,600 to $3,120, considering an average of 260 working days per year.

Start saving at least $2,000 a year on lunches with this ultra convenient crock-pot. Your wallet and your tastebuds will thank you!

5. NAME YOUR SUB ACCOUNTS

Something my husband and I have done for a long time is name our sub accounts under our main bank account.

It helps you to see at a glance how much money you have in each category. You might want to have sub accounts for things like:

  • Roth IRA
  • Vacation Fund
  • College Fund
  • Wedding Fund
  • Medical Fund
  • Emergency Fund

It’s exciting to see progress in each of your accounts when you’re working towards your goals. You can even have some fun with the names to keep things interesting!

An example might be, instead of ‘College Fund’ you call it “Dough University”. And instead of ‘Vacation Fund’, you call it “Getaway Gains”. Play around with some fun names to make an otherwise dull task more interesting 😉

6. DON’T BUY IT STRAIGHT AWAY

This trick may sound like the oldest one in the book, but there’s a good reason why it’s still widely used!

Instead of rushing into buying something you want, take a moment to let it sink in.

Some people like to set a specific time limit, like a day or couple of weeks, but honestly, it’s not about the duration itself. It’s about giving yourself that precious thinking time. You’d be amazed at how your perspective might shift, and you might just realize you don’t actually need it after all.

I’ve managed to save myself a lot of money by waiting a week or two to see if I still want it. After some thinking and as time goes by, you gain clarity on whether you really need the thing or not. So give it a try!

7. EARN EXTRA MONEY WITH MINIMAL EFFORT!

The following ways are completely FREE to use and won’t cost you a dime!

Swagbucks: Swagbucks is one of the easiest ways to make money from home. As someone who has tried them all, this is one of the best for earnings and free gift cards. Some of my favorite places to use gift cards are Amazon, Indigo, Bath & Body Works, Cineplex and Starbucks! All you do is earn points when you answer surveys, shop online, watch videos, play games and surf the web. Yep! It’s that easy.

Survey Junkie: Another favorite and oh-so-easy way to make money in your spare time is by using Survey Junkie. When it comes to making money quickly and easily, Survey Junkie takes the crown! Here is why it’s so awesome:

  • Earn money just by sharing your opinion
  • Flexible and convenient
  • Surveys are diverse and interesting
  • Platform is very easy to use and navigate
  • Reliable and has an excellent reputation (see happy member reviews from Trustpilot below)
  • Other earning opportunities on offer

8. USE MONEY SAVING APPS

While this post is all about tricking yourself into saving money, you still need to spend on the necessities, right?

So, while you’re doing that and buying things like groceries and personal care products, you might as well be saving on those purchases too!

The best way to do that? Cash back and rewards apps. They are a MUST when you’re trying to save money.

What’s great about this is that it’s incredibly low effort since you’ll be quietly accumulating points, cash and rewards in the background as you go about your shopping.

These apps for rewards programs provide an excellent opportunity to save and earn some extra money with minimal effort. Here are a couple that I personally believe are worth your time:

Fetch Rewards: People continue to love and use the Fetch Rewards app and hold it in high regard. With its multiple ways to earn rewards, top notch customer service and special offers, it’s one of the best rewards apps you can find. And trust me, I’ve tried them all. I know what a waste of time some rewards apps can be but Fetch is not one of them! You can sign up for a free account and start earning points right away.

Rakuten: With Rakuten, you can potentially earn up to $1,000 a year by using them as you online shop. All you need to do is sign up for a free account, choose your favorite stores you want to shop at, do your shopping and get paid. It’s so easy even Grandma could do it! Rakuten remains a popular way to save money on shopping and absolutely is worth signing up to. You can sign up here and grab a $10 Welcome Bonus as a new member 🙂

9. STREAMLINE YOUR SAVINGS

Few things are as effortless as the ‘set it and forget it’ approach. Well, maybe not entirely forgetting it because that can lead to trouble. Just to be safe, it’s still a good idea to have a monthly review to make sure your automated accounts are in order.

By the way, this strategy is often referred to as the ‘pay yourself first’ technique, and it’s a brilliant way to trick yourself into saving money. Once you get started, you’ll hardly notice a difference!

When you put your saving and investing on autopilot you get used to not having that money around. You can save and grow wealth without even thinking about it!

“Do not save what is left after spending but spend what is left after saving” — Warren Buffett

10. STORE YOUR LOOSE CHANGE IN A COIN BANK

Physical money isn’t a thing of the past, just yet. And some people just prefer to use cash to pay for things. Especially when using the Envelope Budgeting Method.

Many people still use coin banks too. It’s even a popular way to make sure you don’t overspend, like by using the envelope budgeting method, for example.

You can still have coin banks around the home and fill them up when you’ve got cash on you. It’s easy to just pop in your loose change without much thought and then check them every few months or at the end of the year to see how much you have. You might get a pleasant surprise at how much you saved!

Coin banks might be mistaken for something that only kids would be interested in. But this isn’t true! There are heaps of cool piggy banks for adults that can help with savings.

11. SHOP SECOND-HAND BEFORE NEW

Buying second hand things is a very effective way to save money while still getting the things you need or want.

My husband and I often shop for second hand items that we know will help the environment out and save us money too.

To begin, start researching and determining the exact item you’re looking for. Explore platforms like online marketplaces, thrift stores and local sales to find the best deals. Then, take a mental note of the quality and condition of the items, compare prices across different sources and don’t hesitate to negotiate for a lower price.

I admit that isn’t my strong point because I don’t like asking for less, but my hubby is a pro at this and manages to save us money!

It’s also good to read reviews and feedback to make sure you’re getting a reliable purchase. Always make sure you’re taking safety precautions when meeting sellers and clean and sanitize your purchases before you use them.

Follow these steps and you can save money while recycling items that might otherwise go to waste!

12. FOLLOW THE “ONE IN ONE OUT” RULE

I really like this rule because it’s a clever way to save money and not become a hoarder.

The idea is that whenever you buy something new, commit to getting rid of something you no longer need or use. This helps you maintain a clutter free lifestyle while curbing any unnecessary spending.

So the next time you buy a new handbag or something new for the house, you can look at selling an item you don’t want or use. You could even have a garage sale and get rid of multiple, smaller items to make up for the one big item you want to purchase.

13. USE THE TRICKLE EFFECT

What’s the trickle effect, you ask?

It’s a way to save money by slowly increasing the amount you’re putting away into savings. So for example, you can try putting $1 away in week one, $2 away in week two, $3 away in week three and so on.

If you did this for a whole year, you’d have around $1,378 at the end of the year to do what you want with.

Some people might find this an easier way to save throughout the year than putting away larger chunks of their paycheck each month. It all counts!

14. CONTINUE TO “PAY OFF YOUR BILLS”

You know that good feeling of paying something off, no longer having it hang over your head like a storm cloud?

Then you’ve suddenly got extra cash to do whatever you want with!

One way to save more money is by using that money that would be going towards your bills or debt, and putting it into your savings account.

It’s tempting to spend it, but if you continue to “pay your bills” by putting that money into savings, you’ll boost them really quickly.

You’re already used to living without that money because it’s been going to bills, so why not continue to live without it and let it quietly accrue interest in the background?

WHAT IS YOUR MAIN GOAL FOR SAVING?

Most of us have a major saving goal that we’re working towards. It could be:

– Your dream wedding
– Trip to Bora Bora (yes please!)
– New car
– Saving for your kid’s tuition
– Nice new laptop or other tech
– Save for a house downpayment
– Dental/medical work
– End of year vacation
– Something you want to study
– Save enough money to quit your job

Whatever your goal may be, when you set up and name your sub-accounts as I mentioned earlier, it’ll help you track your savings in each category.

We all have dreams and goals we want to work towards, so start following the tricks in this post to help you get well on your way to achieving this.

Related post: What To Do When You Hate Your Job But Can’t Quit!

While you’re thinking about the goal you want to achieve the most, like a new house, car, vacation etc. Envision what it would be like having that right now in the palm of your hand! This will motivate you to take action and really start to work towards those goals.

LAST OF ALL – DON’T FORGET TO TREAT YO’SELF!

Because life would be boring as heck if we didn’t treat ourselves from time to time! And you don’t have to spend a crazy amount of money either. If you find you’re making good progress towards your goals, or you’ve reached one or two, why not celebrate with a little something for all your hard work?

It could be your favorite Starbucks drink, a delicious ice-cream, or a trip to the cinema. The point is you don’t have to spend whopping amounts of cash to treat yourself and have a good time.

FINAL THOUGHTS

I really hope today’s post has inspired and motivated you to get started on those goals of yours. If you try these tricks out for yourself you will start to see some exciting growth in your life! It’s never too late to start saving and work towards your life’s goals.

Just start now!

Now I want to ask you, readers, what is it that you do to help trick yourself to save money? Let us know in the comments and don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest below 👇🙏

Keep scrolling for bonus content below!

Did you enjoy this post? Don’t forget to pin the image below and follow me on Pinterest for more ideas 🙂

14 Clever Ways To Trick Yourself into Saving Money

BONUS CONTENT: FREE MONEY SAVING RESOURCES!

The following free money saving resources are too good not to share and will further help trick yourself into saving money! These are my top recommendations to help you save more on your financial journey, so be sure to give them a go!

Empower: This amazing app could be your new money sidekick, making it a breeze to reach your financial goals. You can get personalized insights and expert tips to help you save smarter. It’s a bit like having a financial advisor in your pocket! From tracking your expenses to setting up automatic savings, Empower has your back. Get ready to take charge of your money and make your savings soar with Empower – the ultimate financial friend!

Swagbucks: This resource is not only FREE to use but it allows you to earn gift cards for completing surveys, watching videos, shopping online, surfing the web, playing games and more. They offer gift cards to some of the best places and my personal favorites like Starbucks, Amazon, Indigo, Groupon, Bath & Body Works, Cineplex and HEAPS more! I love using gift cards to pay for my purchases like Starbucks drinks, homewares, birthday presents and little knick-knacks. Sign up and get your $10 welcome bonus here!

5dollarmealplan: This is a weekly meal plan service that is designed to help you save time and money. For just $5 a month, you’ll receive a delicious meal plan that costs less than $2 per meal. And on top of that, they offer special meal plans like the Paleo diet and vegetarian options. If you want to try it out without committing first, they offer a risk-free 14-day free trial, and if you find it’s not for you, simply cancel no questions asked.

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