The little illustrative story I am using to begin my article this week comes from my husband…
“When I was in college I had a roommate who was always broke. No matter what activity we wanted him to participate in, he was always short on cash. Yet, despite his constant lack of money, it seemed like he was always going out to eat. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, it didn’t matter, he was constantly eating out. One day, while I was eating dinner in our apartment, I finally asked him about this apparent paradox: why are you always broke but you seem to always be able to go out to eat? He responded that he was broke because he was always eating out and he could not understand how I had money to eat and also pursue other activities. I answered that I simply cooked at home, which was substantially more cost effective than eating out every meal. He looked at me with a confused stare and said, “you know how to cook?”"
This roommate was bleeding money due to one simple problem, he didn’t know how to cook. As soon as my husband showed him a few things around the kitchen, he started preparing his own meals and he was able to keep a lot more of his money in his pocket.
When one thinks about saving money, the first thing that usually pops into someone’s mind is, “how can I spend less?” Unfortunately, as most find, saving money is not only about spending less, its about making due with less. Its about taking what we already have and making it go the distance. When you boil it down to its essence, saving money is simply about knowledge. It’s about having the know-how it takes to not spend a penny when one can be saved.
It is with this basic understanding, that saving money is about knowledge, that I begin this series of articles about the five skills that will save you money. Now, these are not five random skills, because really anything could be considered a skill, but I don’t think juggling or touching your tongue to your nose will really help you out financially. These will be, in my opinion, the top skills for saving you the most money in the long run. I have noticed that there are certain people who are simply able to make due with less. I’ve also noticed that those people tend to be quite knowledgeable in regards to one or more specialized skills. It is my hope that by pointing out those skills which will provide the best value to you, that you will be able to invest your time and learning to create some valuable knowledge for yourself.
Now, while these articles will briefly explore these five skills, they will not serve as in-depth treatises about these topics. These articles will teach you about the skill, but they will not serve to teach you the skill. For that, you will have to do a little legwork yourself.
Lucky for all of us, we live in a special time in history. For thousands of years, information and knowledge was something only accessible by the elite. Today, we have the great knowledge equalizer, the internet. By reading articles, watching YouTube videos, and communicating in online forums, you will be amazed at how much you can learn, simply by accessing the internet. Therefore, I encourage you to learn more about the various skills we will highlight by spending some time searching the internet and building your money-saving toolbox.
So get ready readers. We are about to embark on a money-saving mission. It is my hope that as you explore and learn more about these money-saving skills, you will find yourself with more information in your brain, and consequently, more money in your pocket. Strap up, because here we go . . .