Why is it so Hard to Save?
Saving and losing weight seem to have a lot in common. They are both usual suspects when it comes to who makes the typical New Year’s Resolutions list and though most desire it, achieving it seems like rocket science sometimes. Why is it so hard to save? Have you put money aside for the rainy day and sure enough, it starts to rain shortly afterwards and you had to go take it back (unsave or de-save)? How come most people have challenges in this area, and newly cultivated savings habit does not seem to go the distance?
The crux of the matter seems to be the fact that we are trying to fix the symptoms while leaving the disease to fester. We cannot change behavior on a sustainable basis if the underlying mindset driving the behavior is left untouched. It is like trying to fight a pipeline fire without first of all shutting down fuel supply to the fire. It would be fighting a losing battle.
To save sustainably, we have to become savers.It has to become part and parcel of us. It has to become habitual, something we do by reflex without thinking about it. To get to this point, we need the vehicle of personal growth and development. This is being proactive. There are other ways to get here, a painful or catastrophic event is another way. Most people who went through the great depression of the 1920s ended up thrifty so as not to experience that again at a personal level. It could be an experience a loved one went through that makes us to decide to turn a new leaf. This is using pain as a motivator. This is being reactive.
One major component of personal growth and development is reading books, listening to tapes, attending seminars etc. Every book you read opens your mind to a certain degree. If you read that same book again, you comprehend things at a deeper level. If you go at it again, you go deeper. The more you read, the more you grow. The change may be imperceptible at the beginning but as you go along, you begin to witness changes in your thought patterns and behavior. As you keep reading, you get into an upward spiral of growth. It seems like climbing an elevator. You start to see things at a different level.
With respect to saving, when your mind begins to open, you start to see your wages as a seed rather than the fruit of your labor to be consumed. When that mindset is established, you naturally gravitate towards saving first before spending, because your eyes are now open to the truth. You start to do it automatically. The driving force comes from the new you, who you have become. You do not have to struggle anymore. Your identity has changed, your thoughts have changed, and new action flows naturally. What was hard before becomes easy. You have formed new habits that will support the behavior and actions that will take you to your financial goals. You are on your way to financial freedom and independence.