6 Simple Tricks to Help You Save More Money in 2014.
You work hard for every dime in your paycheck; why not make your money work just as hard for you? The first step, of course, is holding on to more of it for long enough that you can put it to work.
So, here are six easy-to-implement moves to help you step up your savings a notch or two in 2014.
1. The tax bands are adjusting for inflation; save the increase. All other things being equal, your first paycheck in 2014 will be slightly larger than your last paycheck of 2013, because the tax brackets shift every year due to an inflation adjustment. If you were covering your costs from your take-home pay before, you’ll never miss the money if you sock away the increase.
2. Make saving automatic. If you job offers you electronic deposit for your paycheck, see if you can get some of your check automatically deposited to a separate savings account. If not, then talk to your bank about setting up an automatic transfer, and then treat that transfer like a must-pay bill.
3. Getting a raise? Save half of it. Salaries are expected to go up around 3 percent in 2014, and inflation over the past year has been around 1.2 percent. If that pattern holds true in 2014, and your raise is at least average, you ought to be able to save around half of the after-tax part of it without any impact to your standard of living.
4. Negotiate the interest rates on your credit card debt. If you’ve got a good payment history, your card issuer will want to keep you as a customer. If you don’t, your card issuer may be worried that your debt could be headed for a bankruptcy discharge. Either way, it doesn’t hurt to call and ask for a rate reduction; you just might be successful.
5. Even better, get that debt down to $0. Create a debt snowball and put as much money toward it as you can. The sooner you retire your debt, the sooner you can start saving all that principal and interest that you had been paying to the banks.
6. Budget for fun. Seriously, make sure you leave some room in your budget every month for entertainment. It’s a lot easier (and more enjoyable) to set aside a little bit each month for entertainment than it is to try to live a Spartan lifestyle and deny yourself all pleasures. Not only will any attempt to cut fun out of your budget likely backfire, when it does, it’ll probably be way more expensive than letting off a little steam within preplanned limits.
It’s Your Money — Keep More of It
These are just a few of the ways you can get control of your money, save more of it, and direct more of it to exactly where you want it to go. Make 2014 the year your money started working for you as hard as you work for it.
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Have a great day!
“In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for contructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone.” ~Rollo May
What habits do creative people have that makes them so successful at being creative???
I’ve thought about my own creative habits, but decided to research the habits that others consider the most important to their creativity.
Rather than list EVERYTHING I found in reviewing their lists, and then comparing to my own, there was one that stood out the most to me. I think it’s the most important habit when it comes to creativity.
What is it you ask?
In one word it’s SOLITUDE!
At least for me and the many creative geniuses I researched, it seems that creativity flourishes in solitude. Within your quiet zone, you can hear your thoughts, you can reach deep down within yourself, and you can focus.
In the past I really didn’t like being alone. Especially when i was so used to being around lots of people and chaos the last 10 years. However after a few months of finally getting that whether i wanted it or not, I discovered many benefits from solitude.
You actually have time for thought, you get to know yourself, you have
space to create, space to unwind, you find peace, you have time to reflect on what you’ve created, and you learn from it. Really, isolating yourself from the influences of other helps you to find our own voice. The quietness helps to appreciate the smaller things that get lost in the madness life can bring.
Its very important to make it a habit NOT to judge yourself on your creative output. Sometimes your creativity is on fire. Thats great and feels amazing!! but other times, it’s not. You just can’t get down about this. We all have slumps!
Live a creative life everyday. I very much believe in doing creative stuff everyday. When I’m starting to feel in a rut I make a habit of trying a different routine, make something you never thought you would, just shake your own tree and use your imagination.
Find your fun!! Doing what you love inspires you to be more creative.
“Creativity is essentially a lonely art. An even lonelier struggle. To some a blessing. To others a curse. It is in reality the ability to reach inside yourself and drag forth from your very soul an idea.” ~Lou Dorfsman
It’s officially FRIDAY- have a BEAUTIFUL weekend!
Happy Sunday all. Got these awesome ideas from a friend and thought they were worth sharing.
Want an easy way to slice those little cherry tomatoes? Try this out – Put a bunch between two plastic lids and run a long knife through them all at once.
Don’t you love when you go to use your brown sugar and its all hard? Keep it soft by placing a couple of marshmallows in your bag.
I thought this one was a FANTASTIC idea as we always have shoes piled up all over the floor. Put a coat rack on the bottom of the wall and store your shoes safely – NO MORE TRIPPING!!
I find bobby pins ALL OVER the place thanks to my sweet pea daughter. So I am putting up a magnetic strip like this and hope it does the trick.
But if you prefer not to do this and you want something to store them in, a perfect little tic roc dispenser will do wonders too…
Here is a problem solver when your trying to drill a hole in the wall and end up with dust everywhere. Solve it with a post it note to catch the dust 🙂
Have an extra corkboard laying around, along with all your jewelry? Try this out for a nifty way to keep these items organized.
How about those extra knives that never fit into the knife block you have – add some skewers and tada you have that problem solved too.
I remember coming home last summer and my house STUNK something fierce. I could not figure out what it was until I opened my pantry and found old rotten onions. So take your old pantyhose and give this a shot – they are supposed to last for months this way, plus it will eliminate all the peels that fall all over as well.
Its ALMOST that time to start planting – create a thrifty watering can by putting holes in the lid of a used milk jug.
Do your pets leave fur all over everything like mine? Well put that squeegee to work and remove it 🙂
I LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea since I do a lot of painting. Although the plastic trays are not too expensive, they are flimsy, so instead put a piece of tinfoil in the sturdy ones and make clean up simple.
Make your grilled cheese in a breeze – prepare it as normal and turn your toaster on the side and stick it in…
Want to have some clear ice cubes just to make things a little cuter? Instead of using tap water, boil it first but let it cool some and pour into your trays. This is what you will get.
Make stuffed peppers a little easier with your handed dandy muffin pan. I am finding more and more that muffin pans are similar to mason jars in that there are SO MANY USES.
Hate it when potatoes start to bud and spout everywhere? Prevent that from happening by adding an apple to your bag.
Love boiled eggs but not so much the kind that are extremely difficult to peel? When boiling, add a half a teaspoon of baking soda to the water and the shell will peel off incredibly easy.
Don’t toss out those old bread tags, instead use them to label all your household power cords.
Want to prevent the wax build up on the bottom of your votive candle holders? Use a non-stick cooking spray to solve this dilemma.
Got little ones who like to play artists on your walls? Give the good old WD40 a try to remove crayon marks from any surface.
Having a hard time hanging your pictures straight? Put a dab of toothpaste on the frame where you need the nails to be. Then simple press against the wall to leave marks that can be easily wiped later. Works as a perfect guide.
Want to reduce the drying time it takes to get a load of clothes dry? Put a towel in with a wet load and this is supposed to greatly reduce the drying time.
Want to know if your eggs are still fresh? Immerse them in a bowl of water. Fresh eggs will lie on the bottom while stale eggs will float to the surface. Good to know right!
Got some concrete outside that loves to grow weeds between the cracks? Sprinkle salt in the spaces to get rid of them, but remember not to get it near your plants because this will kill them as well.
Not sure if your wooden cutting board is REALLY clean? Sprinkle a handful of salt on it and rub with a half of lemon. Rinse clean with water and dry to ensure it is clean and germ-free.
I LOVE to re-arrange but I HATE the fact that it leaves indents in the carpet. SO YAY I am totally trying this out – place ice cubes (It’s ok to use the cloudy kind – ha ha) along the indents and it is supposed to pull the carpet back up. Interesting I thought.
Love flowers, hate that the soil goes everywhere? Use a handy coffee filter to prevent soil from escaping through the holes in the base of your flowerpots.
Got an annoying leaky faucets with a drip that drives you crazy? Tie a piece of string around the faucet which is long enough to each down to the sink.
Got a drawer full of old scissors that are too dull to cut anything? Grab a piece of sandpaper and cut through that to sharpen them right up.
Got some furniture scratches you would like to see fixed? Check this out…
Can’t get that jar open? Grab the rubber bands, place one around the lid and one around the jar to give it a nice grasp and open without slipping.
NO MORE ONION TEARS – put some white vinegar on your chopping board (this will not affect the taste of your onion) and you will have no more tears.
Clean up our linen closet and make more room by storing sheets inside their pillowcases.
Stubborn stains in your toilets? Most are white like our teeth SHOULD be so drop a couple of dentures cleansing tablets into the toilet bowl at night to FIGHT off those stubborn stains.
Keep those pesky summer flies from getting in to your drinks by creating a cupcake cover – so cute and great idea.
I recently got some new dress pants. And I THOUGHT I would be able to wear a belt cause they were a little big, but soon discovered that there was only two loops in the front so my belt would ride up my back (Looked pretty classy ;P Anyways I took a binder clip and folded it over my pant waist and the belt and HOORAY it worked and it wasn’t noticeable or uncomfortable. Sorry no pic on this one but if you have the same problem you should try it out. However you can also use these awesome binder clips in your fridge to keep staked bottles in place in the fridge.
I TOTALLY DESPISE when I buy things and they are packaged like this below and are impossible to open – so I am beyond thrilled to see this AMAZING tip…
Got a broken light bulb? Pull it out easily with a potato cut in half.
This one is brilliant as well – Laundry day – Grease stains WHAT DO I DO??? Use chalk to remove these grease stains from clothes – simple rub it on the affected area and wash as usual. The chalk will absorb the grease and be washed away in the cycle.
Like your wine chilled and not watered down? Freeze grapes and put them in your glass instead. They are pretty too!~
Don’t let that pan boil over anymore – take a wooden spoon and place it over the top to proven this from happening.
Another favorite of mine…
Rubber bands are ranking right up there with Mason Jars and Muffin pans – ha ha Use one to rescue a stripped screw…
And to prevent your shirts from REPEATED falling off the hanger…
And because I am a crafter and the main thing I make is signs – this IS MY FAVORITE IDEA YET!!!
HOLY AWESOME IDEAS RIGHT!!!!
Hope you all had an AMAZING weekend.
HAPPY FRIDAY!!! I want to share with you a few things that I think we should all practice daily. In my opinion I think these things will give you an overall sense of well-being AND you will probably make others feel pretty darn special too 😉
Do you ever feel like you are just not appreciated? I believe in good and bad karma. Therefore if someone has helped you in some way, and just made your day a tad bit easier – make sure you let them know that with a BIG….
This not only will show others you respect them, but it will most likely be returned back to you when it is your time to receive.
SLOW THE HECK DOWN. Take a measly 15 minutes out of your day to enjoy yourself. Clear your mind – you will be amazed with the inspiration that comes your way when you are feeling at peace. I prefer to start my mornings like this.
Remember that list I talked about in my post yesterday? Probably not cause I don’t think many read it :((( Anyways if you are like me, you can be crazy busy and feel like you never accomplish anything. So DO and check one thing off your to-do list. Did you forget to return a phone call? Do you have a never-ending amount of e-mails you need to clean out? Just do at least one thing that has been really bothering you. It will give you so much relief and a good sense of accomplishment.
EAT at least one healthy & nutritious meal a day. One of my favorites is a chicken salad. I never get bored with these as you can always add or subtract stuff so they taste different each time.
Perform ONE or more if you like, random acts of kindness! The concept of “paying it forward” is REAL and EFFECTIVE. Here is a simple list of ways to accomplish this in the photo below…
GIVE someone your full attention. Always listen without bearing judgments or criticism. Try to avoid giving any self-referencing (meaning don’t turn what they are saying around on you) and really be fully present for whoever needs it. Five minutes of your time is nothing but it sure could change a person’s entire day. Which in return should make you feel good as well.
Try your best to focus on one thing at a time (I know I have a HUGE problem with this but am working on it diligently – it REALLY takes focus) You are only one person and you can’t do everything. I expressed before and I will say it again, it is OK to say NO. I know how hard this is, try not to be rude about it, but remember it is not doing you any good to take on things when you already have your plate full. THIS CREATES STRESS!
Have you made your goal list yet? If not, do it today. It has been proven that there is a direct correlation between people who have written, stated goals and their level of accomplishment compared to people who do not. Can you guess who accomplishes more? But don’t forget to make your goals SMART ones.
And last but certainly NOT LEAST – tell those you love that you love them. There has been SO MANY DEATHS lately in my neck of the woods. It is heartbreaking. Don’t wait- tell them today because there is no day but today!
May peace, joy, happiness and all things good come your way today and everyday. Have a FANTABULOUS weekend!