Part of my efforts towards living minimally is being more conscious with my saving and spending habits. My spending habits are all too familiar to me, but I don’t think I even have saving habits. What I do know is that I save what’s left of my previous paycheck, as well as the money I earn from doing commission work (which, admittedly, isn’t always big). This, of course, is not the ideal way to save financially. Budgeting is also a bit overwhelming for me, so I thought of starting small instead. I searched online for ways to save more efficiently, and came across a 30-day money saving challenge. I read through the prompts and thought they were doable and manageable, so I decided to take it on.
Doing the 30-day money saving challenge is sort of an experiment to see what saving techniques work for me. I’ve previously done other money saving challenges before—I miserably failed all the 52-week money challenges I tried to do, but I have had a little success with the 50 peso bill challenge. At the same time, I thought this would be an effective foray for me to practice making conscious choices about consumption—which, of course, is at the heart of minimalism.
I copied each prompt from the website where I found the 30-day money saving challenge to the Reminders App on my iPhone, and set a reminder for each day. I also scheduled the reminders in such a way that the salary-related prompts would fall on the day of my payday. Also, instead of using a piggy bank, I used mobile banking to transfer funds from my payroll account to my personal, untouchable savings account.
The First 10 Days
The first few days of the challenge, I have to say, were easy breezy. There were a few prompts, however, that I did not follow as strictly as I should have. For example, I placed 50 pesos in my savings on Day 8 even though I don’t work from home. I don’t know exactly how much I spend on transportation in a day because I use the family car on my way to work, so I just placed the amount of money stated in the prompt. Day 10 also asked me to put in the cash equivalent of my last online purchase into my savings. I have not online shopped in a long time (yay!), so I just decided to put in the price indicated in my last online receipt—116 pesos, which was what I paid when I booked my dad a Grab ride.
I started having backlog when Day 12 came in. The challenge was a pretty hefty one: pay for my mobile phone bill AND put 25% of that amount into my savings. I couldn’t perform this task on the day it was supposed to be done for reasons that are entirely personal, but I was able to do so at a later date and got back on track by Day 15. Since then, I never had any delays in feeding my “piggy bank.”
By the end of the 30-day challenge, I was able to save P5,988. Yeah, it’s not a big amount, but I’m pretty happy about it considering that it only took me a month to reach that sum. After all, savings are savings! And what I’ve learned is that it’s actually very easy to save money. I just have to have the willpower, dedication, and motivation to save! I’ve also learned that it helps to know what you’re saving up for—whether it’s for a plane ticket to your next holiday trip, retirement, a laptop upgrade, or whatever it is that you’ve set your heart to. Knowing your “why” will make it easy for you to get through the “how.” As of now, I’m not doing any money saving challenge, but I’m still putting money in my savings account—and I’m more mindful in doing so.
Do you do any money saving challenges? Is there one you could recommend for me? Let me know in the comments. 😊