Does ADHD and saving money have you down? Have you tried time and again to scrape together a few dollars, only to find you still have $0 in your account at the end of the month? Or, have you finally decided to try to tackle ADHD and saving money and put some away?
If you find yourself in any of these situations, you may have come to the right place. We want to provide some sure fire tips to help you tackle ADHD and saving money once and for all. People with ADHD tend to struggle with saving money since they struggle with focus, organization, and planning. Organization and ADHD typically don’t go well together, which makes keeping finances in order an issue. You might struggle with keeping a budget and money in the bank, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t learn to get better at it.
In this post, we provide some of the best tips to help you manage ADHD and saving money well. All of these tips can act as tools to help you better manage your money. We all need to save money for emergency expenses as well as for retirement and other future costs. We just all don’t know how to save money consistently. Read on for some great strategies to improve on how you save.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #1: Identify Your Spending Issues
The first step for ADHD and saving money involves finding out where the spending problems exist. We all have our pet vices when it comes to bad spending habits. For some people, we might spend too much on our car. For other people, they might waste a good portion of their paycheck on their pets each month. Whatever it may be, more likely than not, we all have areas in our lives where we overspend what we should.
In order to find money to save, you first need to find areas where you can cut out. This means identifying your essentials each month such as paying for housing, transportation, food, and debt. After you cover your essentials then, you really need to look at your “just for me” spending habits. What do you spend the most of your excess funds on? What category do you spend more money than you should, and possibly more than you can afford?
When you know what your spending issues entail, you can then start to address those areas. If you go out to eat too much, start setting boundaries and limiting yourself to no more than eating out once a week. Then take what you would normally spend on eating out and put that into your savings first. This might feel painful in the short term, but as your savings account grows, you’ll be glad you made the change.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #2: Remove Your Temptations
The second tip for ADHD and saving money involves removing your temptations. We just talked about identifying your spending issues. Knowing what your issues involve provides you a great place to begin. Setting boundaries gives you a clear goal. Still, though, you might fail at putting any money away if you never guard yourself against spending temptations.
Keeping yourself from overspending involves more than just setting limits. People with ADHD tend to act on impulse. Additionally, they tend to lose sight of the forest for the trees much faster than others. This just means they get distracted by the momentary benefits and forget about the overall goal.
To set yourself up to behave like a money saver, you need to start acting like a money saver. This means that you stop going places that you tend to spend money at. This could include a shopping mall or hanging around your favorite restaurants or casually browsing online retailers.
If you hang around places that entice you towards spending money, you’re prone to do just that and spend away your paycheck before you know it. Don’t let those places and temptations get the better of you. Cut out impulse buying before it has a chance to sneak in and avoid places that you would normally overspend altogether.
If you find this tip particularly hard, you need to replace going to places you tend to overspend with other locations. Start going to free community events or to the park or library. Spend more time at home or with friends in their homes. Soon you might find that you enjoy your time more than you ever did before by spending more time in your community and with friends.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #3: Set Up an Account You Can’t Touch
After you identify your problem spots and remove your temptations, you next need to put your money where you won’t get to it. The secret to long term success with ADHD and saving money comes down to limiting your access to your own savings account. If you have your savings account put somewhere where you see it all the time and can easily get the money out, you might want to start spending it.
The best way to save money is to put it towards your retirement. Most retirement accounts are set up so that you put money in them regularly but you can’t pull money out without a penalty until you actually reach retirement. This creates a barrier between you and your savings which can help keep you from trying to spend it.
Other options for savings could include buying real estate or stocks or investing in a local business. All of these options carry some amount of risk, but they can also provide a long term investment and return on your money. Additionally, they also all make it more difficult for you to quickly turn these investments back into money that you can spend.
A last option might involve setting up a savings account that you don’t look at or manage regularly. You do want to keep tabs on your savings account, but you shouldn’t look at it every day. A good way to set this up would be to have a savings account separate from where you have a checking account. This way, when you look at your checking account more regularly you don’t see your savings. You can then check up on your savings once a month to make sure everything looks good.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #4: Pay Yourself First
ADHD and saving money starts with paying yourself first. All of us have a number of bills that we have to pay each month. We pay for our housing and for utilities and for loans that we may have. We pay so many other people, though, that we tend to neglect to ever pay ourselves.
You have a job so that you can earn money to benefit your life. When you finally get paid for all that work you do, though, you only seem to pay everyone else. This cycle makes it feel like you work for little to no benefit. Saving, though, helps you turn the cycle around and make it so that you pay yourself a portion of your check each pay period.
To start saving, you need to make a rule to always pay yourself first. With many employees, you can set up direct deposit to more than one account. Using this benefit, you can set up a portion to go directly into your savings account each pay period. This way you don’t even have to think about it and you save automatically. Best of all, you pay yourself a portion of what you have earned before you pay anyone else.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #5: Know Why You’re Saving Money
We have all heard the saying about keeping your eyes on the prize. We hear this often when we talk about goals because in the midst of everyday life, we lose focus and we give up on our goals. For ADHD and saving money to work, you need to first know what prize you want to aim for. If you don’t know why you need to save money, you will lose motivation to keep trying to save money.
Before you set out to put money in a savings account, first sit down and make a list of what you want to save for. It’s always a good idea to have a mix of long and short term goals. Having this balance can help you keep focused because with short term goals you can realize your success sooner. These small successes with savings can then help motivate you to save more for the longer term objectives.
After you have a list of goals, keep referring back to it and updating it as you go along. If you achieve one of your short term savings goal, make sure you replace it with another goal. You want to always keep the habit of saving.
If you mark off savings goals, but you don’t replace them, then you will eventually stop saving. You don’t want this. Instead, you want to always maintain a list of what you want to save for so you always stay motivated to keep the saving process going.
ADHD and Saving Money Tip #6: Remind Yourself of your Goals
ADHD and forgetfulness tend to travel together. Many people with ADHD have issues with completing goals partly because they forget and lose track of what they wanted to do in the first place. To help you with your savings goals you need to constantly remind yourself of why you’re saving in the first place.
For instance, if you want to save money to take a special vacation to Hawaii, you need to print off pictures of Hawaii and put them places you can regularly see them. This way, when you feel tempted to take some savings and waste it away, you can look at your reminders to help you resist. The end goal needs to stay on your mind so that you can keep your focus daily.
Another good way to remind yourself of your goals is to have someone else help remind you. For instance, if you want to save for a down payment for a house with your spouse, you and your spouse need to keep one another on track. By working together, you have support and accountability. This helps remind you of your ultimate goal, and helps you save on a regular basis.
Finding Success with ADHD and Saving Money
Many people with ADHD struggle to save money simply because saving money takes patience and a lot of time. No one saves a lot of money in a short period of time unless you win the lottery or receive an inheritance. For most of us, saving money acts as a slow arduous process, and we won’t see much benefit from it for a long time. People who don’t keep their focus on the long term tend to get distracted and fail with saving money.
For people with ADHD, you absolutely must keep the long term goals in sight. Finding success with ADHD and saving money isn’t easy. You can do it, though, if you believe in yourself and put measures in place to help you succeed. We hope that this article helps give you some tools that you can start using today to start saving money.
Some of these strategies might take some practice before they catch on. Once you’ve done them regularly, though, you will find that you don’t even have to plan to save money. It’ll become just a regular part of your life. Ultimately, that should be your end goal.