Do you get up a few minutes early in the morning to brew your own coffee, or sleep a little later and then whip through a drive-thru for your morning pick-me-up? The next time you go through a drive-thru for that cup o’ joe, picture your financial strategy shouting and waving its metaphorical arms to get your attention.
Why? Each and every time you indulge in a “luxury” that has a less expensive alternative, you’re potentially delaying your financial independence. Sound dramatic? But that’s how it happens – one $6 peppermint mocha at a time.
This isn’t to say that you can’t enjoy an indulgence every once in a while. You gotta “treat yourself” sometimes, right? Just be sure that you’re sticking with your overall, long-term strategy. Your future self will thank you! A $6 daily habit becomes $190 per month. If you’re currently 20 years old, that equates to $1,000,000 by age 65 if invested at an 8% annual rate of return.
Here are 3 ways to shift from indulgence to independence:
1. Make beverages at home
Reducing your expenses can start as simply as making your morning coffee (or tea, or smoothie) at home. A quick Google search will yield numerous lists of specialty drinks that you can make at home.
2. Workout at home
How often have you gone to the gym in the last few months? If your answer is somewhere between “No” and “I’d rather not say,” then maybe it’s time to ditch the membership in favor of working out at home or taking a walk around your local park each day. If you love the gym, look into month-to-month membership options. But a hot tub, sauna, and an out-of-pocket juice bar? Maybe not. If you can get in a solid workout without a few of those pricey extras, your body and your wallet will thank you.
3. Ditch cable and use a video streaming service instead
I’m actually surprised at how many clients I have that still use cable. Plenty of streaming services offer free trial periods. Go ahead and give them a try.
In what areas do you think you can start indulging a little less today so that you can indulge much more in the future?
Finally, if scrimping and saving is just not an option for you, have you considered ways to earn more?