Live A Charmed Life On A Meager Income

Miss Money Bee by April Lewis-Parks

You may frequently envision yourself living a fabulous lifestyle that involves jet-setting to Europe for the summer, wearing vintage clothing and learning Italian or the art of gourmet cooking. Then your paycheck brings you back down to Earth. Despite what you may have heard, you don’t need a six-figure income to do the things you want in life. What you need is financial discipline, hard work and little flair for creativity.

The key to changing your lifestyle and taking advantage of more experiences is to change how you think about money and challenge your current spending habits. There are a few creative ways to accomplish this, and putting in the hard work can have big payoffs in the end.

1. Don’t waste your time. If you have a few hours each day when you’re not doing anything, consider taking on a freelance position, putting in some overtime or getting a part-time job to earn some additional income. Sure, the idea of working on top of your full-time job may not sound enticing, but if taking a winter vacation is really important to you, putting in a few extra hours can pay off. Plus, you may only choose to take a seasonal position until you have enough to cover the costs of your trip or a new splurge. This will not only help you save money without relying on debt, but all your efforts will make you appreciate your pay off even more.

2. Take the road less traveled. Rather than staying in pricey hotel or purchasing a new designer outfit at full price, look for other options to help you save money. For example, renting a flat with a stove and refrigerator for a few weeks can save you hundreds of dollars on hotel stays and food when you’re traveling. And purchasing clothing on sales days, shopping on bargain sites and even borrowing from friends can keep your purse heavier. If you’re aching to learn something new for fun, there are adult education classes, learning centers, studios and other facilities to help you engage in your passions without enrolling in costly programs.

3. Talk to strangers. Networking can open your eyes to new possibilities, relationships and experiences that you may never find going directly through websites. Meeting new people can also help your finances by allowing you to learn from others’ experiences and find out new ways to participate in opportunities and new experiences. And it doesn’t cost a thing.