January 26

52-Week Money Challenge

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On the first Sunday of 2017, I saw a TV feature on 52-Week Money Challenge. The feature encourages people to save a specific amount of money every week for 52 weeks (equivalent to one year) so that one could have more than enough money by the year’s end.

How awesome could that be? Since I was child, I was taught to save money, thanks to my parents. Saving has developed the values of discipline and delayed gratification for me. When I started working, I levelled up my saving through government bonds, insurances, mutual funds, and stock market. I could say that the seed of saving that my parents planted in me flourished.

I thought I wouldn’t survived. But I did! I was able to save 5-digit income in pesos. It enabled me to put a larger amount of money for my investments. It’s like seriously having a 13th or 14th month income!

It also taught me again that I always have money that I will never need. The discipline of saving was so strong, I had to think twice where the money will go.

Let me share with you my Money Challenge insights to prepare you for your own 52-Week Money Challenge.

  1. Identify your objective. Why would you want to even start this challenge? Is it because you want to change your spending habits into a better habit? Always think with the end in mind.
  2. Set aside a money jar and a list of the 52 weeks. I labeled my jar “Christmas”, while I wrote down weeks 1 to 52 on a sheet of paper. This list was posted on my bulletin board. Tip: It is best to put the inclusive dates each week so you won’t get confused. I did not do this so I went to a point where I started asking, “What week number are we now?”
  3. Be flexible. There are different tips on putting specific amounts of money for the challenge. Others put a specific amount per week. Others put increments of amount. For example, for week 1, you place five pesos. For week 2, you put in ten pesos. For week 3, you save fifteen pesos, and so on. It doesn’t matter. The best thing to solve this is to ask yourself these questions: “How much do I want to save by the end of the year” and “Am I comfortable with the amount I am going to save every week?” For me, I chose the increment amount strategy. I started with fifty pesos for the first four weeks. For weeks 4 to 8, I place one hundred pesos. For weeks 9 to 12, I saved one hundred fifty pesos, and so on.
  4. If you can, the amount you’re saving should be above inflation. Karla Stefan-Singson advised this to me when I joined her CashFlow Challenge. Our currency right now is fifty Philippine pesos to one US dollar. So it is best to start saving on that based amount.
  5. Another question to ask yourself: “What will I do with the money I was able to save?” Here’s the thing: once you save money (and it took you long to achieve it), it is harder to let it go. I am not advising you to hold on to your money. Make sure that you’re putting your money for an intended purpose.

When I posted a photo of my new 52-Week Money Challenge list, someone commented, “It’s hard to do the challenge is your salary is delayed. Most of us end up loaning money for the until the salary arrives. Then of course, I have to pay those loans. It’s a vicious cycle.”

There’s also another post which says, “Why are we focusing on saving that earning money?”

Let me try to connect these polarities.

First, I do not recommend you to do this if you’d resort to getting into debt just to continue the challenge. This should teach you not to be frugal nor to do a bad thing to make up for the good. The challenge should teach you discipline and self-control.

Second, the question you should be answering is “Aside from my salary, how would I be able to put money on this Money Challenge?” I guess you have other skills that you could offer as a service to others. Get paid for those services. You’d not only put something on the Money Challenge jar, you also increased your income. Answer the “How” instead of “What”.

Third, I believe that saving is the baseline of money matters. I already mentioned that my parents taught me to save as a child. Later on, it is in saving that I knew about mutual funds, stock market, government bonds, real estate, and online marketing. It is in saving that I learned to educate myself further.

How would tell someone to invest in a P5,000-mutual fund when he is in credit card debt?

How would you be able to tell someone to work online when he doesn’t have even a small amount of saved money to buy a decent laptop and Internet connection?

52-Week Money Challenge, just like any other money challenge that is out there, is simple, yet it should teach you big life lessons. The essence of winning the money game is choice.

Because how you look and work at your money is how you look and work in life.

If you are interested in going for a 52-Week Money Challenge but you still do not know what to do with your saved money, I encourage you to educate yourself on personal finance. Studying this will guide you make better decisions on money.

Join me and thousands of others in the Truly Rich Club! This club aims to educate people about personal finance and become millionaires (yes, you read it) the right way. I am excited because I will put a part of my 52-Week Money Challenge to my wealth-building instrument, made possible by what I am learning from the Truly Rich Club.

New year, new 52 weeks of saving! Are you joining me on the challenge?

Click here know more about Truly Rich Club.


Tags

challenge, money


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