Do you always feel like you’re hanging on for your next payday, with nothing left in the tank to keep you going? Is it a struggle to make ends meet in the second half of the month? If so, then there are some very common reasons that might be keeping you down in this situation. See if they match up with your own experiences – if they do, it’s time to make a change.

1. You don’t have a budget

How much money do you bring in a month, and how much do you spend? If you can’t answer both of those questions off the top of your head, then the problem is that you don’t have a budget or track your finances. There are many apps that can help you to do this nowadays, so it should be easy.

Take your paycheck, and calculate how much of that you need to spend on bills, rent, your mortgage, or other responsibilities that are always there. Then, however much is left is your spending money. If you want to start saving, you should take a certain amount off the top and then limit your budget to that amount, so that the rest goes into your savings.

Finally, track you spending to ensure that you don’t go over your budget before you get to the end of the month.

2. You are obsessed with material things

5 All-Too-Common Reasons Why You Are Living Paycheck to Paycheck

Do you constantly buy new material things? Maybe you always feel the need to get a new car every couple of years? Perhaps your wardrobe is full to bursting with clothes, not all of which you can actually wear? If you think that buying material things will keep you happy, it’s time to realise that it will only keep you broke. Imagine how much happier you would be with some financial breathing room, or a bigger investment down the line like a house or a wedding once you’ve saved up.

3. You’re not thrifty

Being thrifty doesn’t have to mean being cheap, or never having nice things. It means being smart about how you spend your money. When was the last time you checked whether you could save on your bills by changing suppliers? Do you shop at the cheapest place for groceries? Are you taking advantage of deals and coupons? Do you reuse things instead of throwing them away, whenever possible? These will all help cut down your overall spending.

4. You’re not earning enough

5 All-Too-Common Reasons Why You Are Living Paycheck to Paycheck

It could well be that your wage simply isn’t enough to accommodate the average price of living in your area. In that case, you have a few options. You can ask for a raise, or look for a new job that pays better. Conversely, if you have some time to educate yourself further or start an additional, small job, you can earn money on the side by learning how to trade or invest, becoming a part time VA, or selling crafts, and so on. Finally, you can move somewhere where the cost of living is cheaper. Lowering your standards, even for a year or two, might help you save enough money to buy a house, start your own business, or invest.

5. You’re not paying off debts

If you have debts to pay off, you’re probably just making the minimum payments since you’re low on funds. The problem is, this will only leave you in debt for longer. Because of the way that interest works, the longer it takes you to pay everything off, the more it will cost you. With your new thrifty savings, pay off more of your debts every month – go beyond the minimum payment. This will get you back on track much quicker.

It’s hard to live without enough cash in the bank, but you’re the only one who can help change the situation. Start now, and you’ll be reaping the results tomorrow.

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