Dieters and alcoholics know that the buddy system can hold them accountable for losing weight or staying sober. Did you ever think that you could use the same buddy system to supercharge your savings? The theory is the same. By setting goals and then recruiting some buddies who can cheer your successes and help you get back on track when you fail, you will find that it keeps you honest. The financial goals for savings can be as simple as paying off credit cards, saving for a dream vacation, or planning an emergency fund. The trick is to pick something you can achieve, put it in writing, and then get your buddies involved.
Who Are Your Buddies?
The good news is that you don’t have to rely on just family to help you start a network of buddies to help you achieve your financial goals. There are plenty of financial communities online that deal with savings like mint.com. They come with a ready-made audience who can act as your online buddies. Other people choose to start a blog to chronicle their progress with their goals and solicit ideas, like thirtysixmonths.com. Just be sure you have a plan outlined in your About Me section detailing what you are trying to achieve and by when. This will help to get your readers involved in your progress, too.
Celebrate Your Successes
Make it easy to motivate yourself. If you find that you’ve successfully paid off one credit card, be sure to schedule a reward. It may seem childish, but it’s a neat psychological trick that can keep you motivated and make you feel as if you earned it. Enlist your spouse, just like you might do with a diet. They should also be involved in helping you reach your goals and getting a reward for good behavior.
Strategize With Others
When you fail in a goal, seek advice. It may be there is an easier way to do what you are trying to achieve and you just don’t have the knowledge. Financial planners can help, but don’t overlook your friends on social networks or your local credit union representative. Be flexible, don’t dwell on your mistakes, and your finances will continue to improve steadily the more that you work at them. Even the mistakes are learning experiences that can point you to another inspired solution that can make a huge difference in the amount you save or how fast you save and finish your goal.