How To Live Below Your Means (Without Cutting Your Daily Latte)

Understand that living below your means isn’t about clipping coupons or denying yourself the things you love. It’s about developing habits and a mindset. Here’s how you can start.

#1. Know Your Numbers

The first step is getting all of your expenses out of your head and into a system where you can track them. This could be as simple as using a budgeting spreadsheet.

#2. Start With Easy Habits

The author of the book Tiny Habits — argues that one of the key ways to create a new habit is to start small, because trying to do too much at once is overwhelming and sets you up for failure.

#3. Change Your Environment

It’s essential to evaluate what’s in your environment that could be tempting you to spend more than you should (or to not be making as much money as you feel you should be making).

#4. Hold Yourself Accountable To Others

Many people’s default behavior is to keep their money goals to themselves. Unfortunately, this is true even with couples, where a lack of communication about money can quickly lead to conflict and resentment.

But this isn’t just true for couples. If you’re working towards living below your means, it’s important to surround yourself with people who not only support you but who can also hold you accountable.

#5. Start Paying Your Goals First

Setting up an automatic bill payment for your mortgage, using the auto-payment feature for your credit card, or contributing to your 401(k) are all excellent examples of automating good financial choices.

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