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How to Break Bad Spending Habits

We all spend money without thinking. Whether it’s stopping on the way to work for a coffee or on the way home for an ice cream, spending money mindlessly is all too often a habit. Many of us have some bad spending habits that should be broken, and learning how to break them can mean hundreds of extra dollars in savings per year. Finding the answers to these questions can help you get started:

What am I spending money on?

Blog How to Break Bad Spending Habits

One of the first things you should do is evaluate your spending habits. You may be surprised to learn how much money you’re spending on ATM fees, dry cleaning, bottled water and even late fees. The first step in getting control of your spending and breaking bad habits is to identify them. Once you have itemized all of your spending, identify ways you can add the funds you are spending needlessly into your savings account. Every dollar you spend should be carefully tracked.

What are my personal savings goals?

One of the best ways to stop spending money wastefully is to set a realistic savings goal. Whether it’s for that new large-screen television, a much-needed vacation or to pay for your education, setting a savings goal can help you break bad spending habits. Simply put, if you have a reason to save, you will be more aware of how you’re spending money. There's a low-cost app called "The Habit Factor," which can be used on your mobile device to help you set goals and set new habits.

How are you spending money?

Many people who depend on their debit cards for all their spending tend to spend more than those who have cash on hand. One good way to deal with this is to allocate a certain amount of money for specific items each week or month. For example, if you must have lunch out with coworkers, set aside a specific amount for lunch and once that’s gone, avoid going out to lunch until the next budgeting cycle.

Keep in mind, we all develop bad habits over time; they are not created instantaneously. However, if you set your mind on changing these habits by setting up a better financial management plan, you can turn poor spending habits into positive ones. If you’d like more information on how to set up a savings account and receiving full access to a broad range of financial planning tools, contact a Member Financial Representative at Oklahoma Central Credit Union today at 918-664-6000, select option 8.

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