Invest Now, Be Rewarded Later

28 Nov

Just like I knew it would, the Thanksgiving holiday came and went like THAT!

Before you know it, I’m back at work and even though the day is actually almost over, I’m actually really missing my family and wishing I was back with them right now and laughing over my Uncle and his BFF dancing to Michael Jackson’s music in the middle of their living room.

Even though I had a blast this holiday, I definitely still haven’t recovered. Ha! I need some serious R & R. My back hasn’t quite healed from all of that standing and waiting in line from Black Friday shopping. But I must tell you – it was well worth it. Bargain shopping has always been my thing. I never like to pay full retail price especially when it’s for myself. Some might think it’s “cheap” to not go that way. I think it’s the economical way of shopping. Don’t get me wrong, I buy nice things for myself and even as Christmas gifts for other people. But when I know it’s going to be on sale or if I know that I can get free clothes by standing in line to be one of the first 100 people at a store and getting a scratch off to do so – then I’ll do it. It’s saving me money in the long run so that I can invest it into something bigger and that might last a little longer. ‘Money in my pocket, not theirs [stores, conglomerates]’ has always been my motto.

This coming year, I’m actually more excited about investing and saving than spending! Sounds strange coming from a woman who loves shopping. But in reality, I’ve built my own sort of beginners guide to my own investment plan and I’ve got my own plans for the next few years down the road. Though things might change, I’m kind of expecting that they may or may not, I’ll cross those bridges when and if I get to them. Even though I believe everyone should have some kind of investment of some kind or build some kind of saving plan for themselves, I know it’s a hard thing to follow and there are tons of deterrents. But even if you’re saving a small amount every paycheck – $20, or $50. If that’s a lot – start smaller. Start somewhere! Because honestly, that’s when you begin to realize you’ll remain stagnant your whole life – when you aren’t investing or saving into your future.

So here’s one of the things you never knew about me. It’s not a secret and it’s not something I’m ashamed about either. I like to think I’m pretty organized – even when it comes to money and where it goes. Call me anal retentive if you will. But for a good six weeks in advance, every week, I pretty schedule the hours I’m planning on working and figure out what my paychecks will look like. If you have the type of job that you work by the hour (which technically I do but I’m a full timer) and would like to know what your paychecks are generally going to look like -give or take a few dollars for taxes, I use a great site called Paycheck City. Once I’ve done that, I will get my net income for each pay period and then I will figure out how much of that check needs to go towards what bills &/or expenses. I then write it on a post it and stick it in my planner for each pay period and it looks a little something like this:

Week Ending 11/25/11:

$533-$200[Rent]=$333-$100[Credit Card]=$233-$100[Savings]=$133-$60[Food Shopping]=$73

Now these are just general ideas, I’m not actually going to show people what I make and or don’t make LOL. Because that would be too much information. But you get the concept. I basically, every pay period, put money aside for Rent and bills rather than spending my last two paychecks of the month on bills and rent alone so I’m poor. Yeah no thank you! And every pay period I always make sure that as I divide up what I’m putting my check towards, I’m always leaving myself with some flex cash until the next pay day. Not that I usually spend it all, but just in case. Also, I am trying to save a lot more than I usually did just because I am on my own investment plan as I mentioned so I have this whole plan scheduled and I’m trying to stay organized with it. Plus, just as a little boost that I gave myself and that I give to everyone I know about saving tips – If you saved $100 every week, you’d be saving $20,800 in an entire year. That’s an amazing down payment on a house or a great start to your savings plan. However, even if you just saved half of that – that’s $10,400 in one year which boils down to saving $200 every month or $50 every week. Let’s say $200 is still too much for you to save right now. Even saving half of that could be a great savings – $100 every month would save you $5,200 in one year.

I know I see all of these amazing goals and things I want to accomplish in my future, but money is a huge factor that unfortunately plays a key role in a lot of our decisions. Though I’d like to think it shouldn’t, sometimes without it – it can set you back from doing certain things you’d like to do.

With that being said, there are still a few hurdles I need to get over as well so that I can continue investing that will allow me to continue that path to invest in my future but it’s nothing I don’t think I’m not capable of achieving.

Sometimes you have to just face things you thought you were incapable of and you wind up surprising yourself in the end.

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