Raise your hand if you’re up for a 365 day money challenge! Any day is a good day to save money, am I right? I like a year long challenge because you save small amounts of money over a long period of time. Trying to pull large amounts of savings out of thin air is a common reason why people fail at savings goals. You’re much more likely to succeed if you start small, and give yourself plenty of time to reach your goal.
Most people set year long savings goals in January. They see the whole calendar year before them, and it’s easy to track progress from January 1st to January 1st.
But there’s no rule that says you can’t save from March to March and that’s just what we’re going to do. I know my savings always appreciate a boost, and I don’t want to wait until next year to start giving it to them. We’re rule breakers over here. 🙂
A 365 day money challenge is a great activity for people who are new to saving. It helps establish savings as a personal habit, as well as establish small goals so that you don’t get overwhelmed. Saving a little bit of money every day means that at least once a day you think about your money, and ultimately, your money goals.
Why are you saving? How are you making that savings happen? Even if it’s just for one minute a day, thinking about your money is always a good thing. It normalizes money for you, which means that you’ll become more comfortable handling it over time. A 365 day money challenge can help you conquer money fears, as well a put a little more money back in your pocket.
I firmly believe that saving money works best when you can see immediate results. Seeing a new balance pop up in your savings account motivates you to keep going.
So onto the challenge! How will we save money over the next year?
Each day, you’ll save some version of $3.65. To start, it can be $0.01 or it can be $3.65. You can download a chart that the comes from Saving Advice here. Cross off the amounts you’ve saved after you save them. You never have to save that amount again- the next day you’ll save a different amount.
You can go from $0.01 to $0.02, all the way up to $3.65 throughout the year. Or if there’s a month where you’re flush with cash and you want to knock out the higher amounts, you can do that! The control is totally in your hands. You decide what works best for your schedule and money. All that matters is that you save something each day. Flex those financial memory muscles and make saving a habit.
By the end of the year, you’ll have $667.95 in savings. That’s not bad for literally saving pennies for 100 days of this challenge! That money can be used for anything, but jump starting your emergency fund, or padding a retirement account are nice places to start.
Have you done a 365 day money challenge before? Do you know another one that works well?
Kara Perez is the original founder of From Frugal To Free. She is a money expert, speaker and founder of Bravely Go, a feminist financial education company. Her work has been featured on NPR, Business Insider, Forbes, and Elite Daily.