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Saving Money Even When You Have Bad Spending Habits

I have bad spending habits. I can be honest about that. I have a tendency to say “oh, I did X so I should treat myself for doing that” which is alright when you just do it sometimes, but when you’re like me and do it almost every day, you may find your wallet growing thinner and thinner. One day you wake up and realize that you actually don’t have enough money left and you have the desperately budget what you do have, and cut costs wherever you can.


However, if you know you are like me, there is hope! One thing I’ve learned over time is that you have to plan for all possibilities. As a commuter (and someone who is deeply anxious about being late), I’ve learned to build as much contingency time into my travel as possible! I’ve had to do the same thing with money: a few years ago I realized that if I ever wanted to travel, I would have to start saving immediately. So I looked around online for options a young teenager with no bank account could use, and found the idea of a travel jar! I labelled the jar my “Adventure Fund” and decided that money would only go in, and not come out. It works really well, and I still add to it when I can.


Unfortunately, life happens and there have been times where it was absolutely necessary to take money out of the jar, but for the most part I’m pretty good at leaving it alone.


From one over-spender to another, I strongly advise you do this: find a safe place to store your savings, whether it be a jar or bank account, and make sure you have to put in extra effort to access the money. For me, I hide my jar under a pile of stuff in one corner so I have to go digging to actually get to it. The harder my money is to access, the less likely I am to spend it on stuff I don’t need to spend it on.

If you have multiple areas you need to save money for, divide up the money you do have or will get according to need, and put the money for those areas in their own jar/envelope/container! That way, you’re less likely to go over budget because you have a physical budget right in front of you, instead of just having numbers on a piece of paper or screen. Physical reminders of your boundaries are often better for keeping you within them.


Most importantly, remember it IS okay to treat yourself! Just don’t let it eat into the money you need for meals, textbooks, or whatever bills you may have.


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Hey! I'm Stephanie Wilcox, and I am a professional writing major here at York U! I spend most of my time playing piano or ukulele and crying over books and boybands. I'm currently studying Korean as an elective, and I hope to do plenty of travelling after I graduate. I believe in fighting for a better, safer, and more equal future, especially through words and writing. This is my third year at York University, and I am thrilled to begin writing with Her Campus this year as a CC and seeing the impact we will be making here!
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