We all strive to master our money in one way or another. Think about it, who doesn’t want to have control over their finances? while getting a grip on your finances takes time and dedication, there is certainly no reason you can’t have fun with the process.
The money challenge phenomenon offers ample opportunity for those who are ready to build strong financial saving habits in a creative way. Plus if you’re competitive like me, you know that challenges can be fun and motivating.
Read on to see what money challenges can do for your financial goals and why you need to start one today!
Saving Can Be Fun
From Weather-Dependent Savings challenges (you make a weekly deposit based on the weather forecast on a specific day of the week) to a buy-nothing year challenge (except for the essentials and bill payments), the task of saving money can be more enjoyable with these creative options.
In particular, money challenges offer a great way to save for bigger events in your life that can seem daunting to fund such as:
- A vacation
- Your dream wedding
- An emergency fund
- A home down payment
- Gifts for the holiday season
- Maxing out your 401(K)
- Building your investment portfolios
Just as there is no shortage of financial goals to reach for, there is also no shortage of money challenges to help you save for whatever is most important to you.
Who’s Ready For A Money Challenge?!
These 5 easy to follow and completely fun money challenges will push you out of your comfort zone and help you see positive results in your bank account quickly.
1. 52-Week Savings Challenge
This challenge is a classic one that provides a great basis to keep your savings routine regular! Start by saving $1 the first week, $2 the next and so on until you reach $52 for the 52nd week of the year. At the end of this money challenge, you will have saved up $1,378 to help you build your financial foundation!
The other side of this money challenge is going in reverse by saving the most amount to start ($52 the first week) and working your way down to $1 by the end. This is especially clever if you are starting this challenge in January so when the next holiday season comes around, you won’t have to worry about putting so much aside!
When you’re ready to push your savings limit, try one of the variations of this 52-weeks savings challenge where you save $3,000, $5,000 or even $10,000 in a year!
2. Side Hustle Challenge
Why not take on a double whammy challenge by saving the money you earn from a side gig?! You can gather a group of friends and challenge each other to earn a certain amount of side income in a few weeks time. When you earn extra money with this challenge, be sure to pocket the savings.
One of my friends did this with her sister. They both challenged each other to sell as many unused items from their home that they could find in one month.
It’s no secret that a side hustle is a great way to support your financial goals. When trying to improve your personal money situation, a month-long extra income challenge such as this one can really help you bolster your bank account and confidence.
The great thing about this challenge is that a side hustle can take on pretty much any form and for many of them you don’t need a specific set of skills. Start here to read more on how to get into the inspiring side hustle world and check out this awesome example of a side hustler earning a great monthly income.
Related: The Ultimate Guide to Side Hustling
3. No Spend Challenge
Say what?! Spend nothing at all?!
While this money challenge might be the most difficult of them all it is certainly attainable. Unlike the buy nothing for a year challenge mentioned above, this challenge allows you to ease into the concept of halting your overspending dead in its tracks.
The no spend challenge is very popular amongst debt-free enthusiasts as it is a complete break from spending money, especially frivolously. It can be modified in several ways (i.e. spending money only items in the grocery store but nowhere else) but determining where you will spend money before you begin the challenge is key. This includes paying your bills and buying necessities such as groceries.
For many people spending less is very difficult, especially living in a high consumption society such as North America. With personal debt on the rise, this challenge is a great way to change your overspending habit and take an introspective look into your relationship with money.
4. Dine In Challenge
North Americans love to eat out! According to an article by CNBC.com, the average American household spends $3,008 on eating out yearly.
With the growing amount of convenience food options, it is easier than ever to pick up something on the go or enjoy a celebration at a restaurant. With so much money being spent daily (think lunchtime) and yearly, that eating out money could be put towards your financial goals instead.
Try a dine-in challenge where you don’t spend money on food or drinks outside of your home. Get creative with your grocery lists and work your budget magic in the kitchen!
If you need inspiration, this list of frugal meal ideas (linked below) will help you jump start your dine-in money challenge.
5. Scale Down Challenge
Making changes in your life doesn’t have to just be in the financial realm. As you get your money story cleared up with these awesome challenges, be sure to declutter the spaces you spend the most time in such as your bedroom, kitchen, and office.
Adopting a minimalist lifestyle is also fantastic as it helps you truly focus on what is most important to you in all areas of your life. Wondering where to start? Read up on how to embrace minimalism in this article (linked below).
Here are a few honorable mentions that are also worth a try!
- Money Saving Challenge for Kids
If you and your partner are trying a money challenge, why not involve your kids too?! This is a great way to build fantastic money habits in them at an early age and help them build a positive mindset and relationship with their finances.
- Investing Money Challenge
If you are saving your money why not use it to earn yourself even more money passively? Use your money saved to start or bolster an investment account that suits your goals and future needs.
- Penny-A-Day Money Challenge
For each day of the year, save $0.01 more each day. From $0.01 to $3.65 you will accumulate just under $700. This is a great way to save your pennies for an emergency fund!
Remember, as you work your way through the challenge you selected, you will encounter ups and downs that may test your limits. Some tips to help you complete your challenge strong are:
- Find a deeper why and build your mindset. This will keep you focused and your motivation level high.
- Start small. Try out these challenges for a month, build success and then move your way up to longer periods.
- Find an accountability partner. It’s always more fun when you have a buddy involved!
- Keep your money in an out of reach place. This will help to reduce the temptation to use your money for a different reason than intended. Remember, out of sight, out of mind.
- Review your monthly bills to see if you can lower your payments and save even more.
- Include your money challenge goal in your financial budgets. Revising your budget with the Love Your Budget Course can help set you up for success in all areas of your finances and get your money goals in order!
Whether for the holiday season or throughout the year these great savings challenges are sure to make your saving experience one to remember.
Have you tried a money challenge before? If so, which one and what was your experience? Do you have any tips or other unique money challenges that you recommend?
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