You don’t have to be a Wall Street economist to know that our economy isn’t all that healthy right now. Money isn’t worth as much, items cost more, and our country is in debt. It has been like this for a while now, and according to economic forecasters, it will remain that way for quite some time.
So, we can feel sorry for ourselves and pinch every penny, never leaving our house for fear of bankruptcy – or we can enjoy our lives with the understanding that money doesn’t buy happiness.
Here are some tips for living, and more importantly, enjoying your life on a tight budget.
Entertainment may seem like a frivolous item, but in actuality it is more necessary then ever in these dark periods. We need things to distract us from time to time and while expensive Broadway shows or high-priced video games do this job very well – they aren’t the only way to have a good time. Review your local newspaper for free events held by the community, head to your local museum or library, or watch a movie at your house. These activities are all free, or very low cost, and will keep you entertained for hours.
2) Day to Day
Money has to be spent from day to day on regular activities. You have to eat, you need to shower, and your car needs gas. There isn’t much you can do to prevent these costs, but you can work to reduce them. Keep your tires full of air, and have your car tuned regularly to maintain optimal gas mileage. Avoid driving whenever possible by walking or taking a bike. Fight the urge to watch cable TV. You can save nearly $50 dollars a month by eliminating cable TV from your household.
Planning for the future is difficult when you’re having trouble living in the “now.” Still, it’s important to do as much as you can, no matter how small an effort, to prepare yourself for the later stages of your life. Putting money in the bank, or making wise investments will help build a foundation to live on, once retirement time rolls around.
So, the world may not be coming to an end, but we are in a difficult time. Know that things will get better, but that in the mean time you just have to enjoy the less expensive things in life – like family and friends.
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