Money tends to finish too fast – I have no doubts you have long since noticed that. No matter how much or little money you have, one fine day when you least expect it, you realize that you are short of cash. Students, who are for the most part not financially independent yet (and at the same time, too young and inexperienced to handle their limited funds properly), are somehow more prone to those unexpected shortages. But I hope that older people whose school days are far back may also benefit from these money managing tips.
1. “Monitor and control”
That was the slogan that Vladimir Lenin, the leader of Russian revolution, proclaimed in one of his works devoted to Russian economy reconstruction and management almost a century ago. And he was right: his tip still works. What’s more, it applies to your small scale home economy as well. Try to write down and then analyze all your daily, weekly, monthly expenses, and you’ll be surprised If not shocked to find out how much money you spent on things you do not really need or could easily do without. Now, cut down those expenses, and here you go: you’ve got a few bucks you can spend on things that you really need.So, what are the little secrets that help you make your money last longer? Please read ahead.
2. Plan ahead
ඔව්, do it: make up your mind on what you need, make shopping lists – and follow them strictly. Plan how much money you can afford to spend on food, clothes etc. – and don’t go beyond the budget. Never carry more cash that you plan to spend when you go out: you know how people are, they see some piece of clothes or something else and decide that that is love at first site and that they must have it, and have it NOW. But once you bring that much-desired object home, you find out that you don’t like it all that much somehow, and that it was a mistake, after all, to buy it – you know the situation from your own experience, don’t you? Please don’t misunderstand me: I don’t call upon you to become yet another relation to Uncle Scrooge. Life’s too short, so do allow yourself those little treats that make it worth living when you really want or need them: buy yourself that ice-cream, or chocolate, or beer, if that is what you want. Or go out with your friends. Only that, make sure those self-indulgence sessions do not repeat too frequently or cost you too much. Or better still, plan them too, like, that’s the amount of money that I can afford spending on trifles this week – and never go beyond your treats budget as well!
3. Do it yourself
Cook your own meals, wash and mend your clothes, clean your room etc etc. Takeaways and drycleaners save time and make life so much easier and more comfortable – but unfortunately, you can’t be saving time and money simultaneously! It has to be either this or that, and you also have to pay for comfort. So, define your priorities, and if what’s you are up to is saving money, then Do it yourself.
4. Walk, don’t take lifts
Honestly, I don’t understand people taking buses or cabs when all the distance that they have to go is just a couple hundred meters. ඔව්, it saves time, but see Tip 3 above, you can’t be saving time and money at the same time. So do walk when the place you are going to is within the walking distance (and by the walking distance I mean 20-30 minutes’ walk). ඔව්, it’ll take you more time to get there, so what? Leave home a little earlier, that is all. එසේම, don’t forget that walking is a good exercise and somehow a good way to concentrate on your thoughts and ideas: whenever I have an important decision to make, I go for a walk, and I usually come back home with a clearer mind and some new ideas on what I need to do. Warning! Please don’t take this advice too literally! Don’t walk through places which are somehow dangerous (you know what I mean, don’t you?), or when it is late. Safety first: do take a lift no matter how much it costs when you have to get somewhere late in the evening, but next time, think ahead if you really have to stay out that late J.
5. Borrow, not buy
ඔව්, simple as that: lots of things can be borrowed from your friends or schoolmates, like, පොත්, CDs, some devices or sports equipment. What’s more, you can even find people who do not need them anymore and can’t wait to get rid of them, so you may be lucky to get what you want for free. Or another good way is to cooperate with your friends and get something that you can share. Like, you are all going to use the same set of books, or several of you can share the same laptop or bike. It’ll cost each of you less; you’ll just have to make arrangements on how you are going to use those things. But please remember that it is not hygienic to borrow each other’s clothes. Even if you wash them well.
And one more tip that you get for free: don’t waste your time and money facebooking (or interneting in general), textmessaging and chatting with your friends. Instead, attend to your studies or better still, get yourself some job. In this case, you may not need these money managing tips all that much J.
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