Michael on December 27th, 2007
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Did you receive any monetary gifts over the holidays? If so, go ahead and spend some of it.

You: That’s not how I thought that sentence was going to end.

Remember the importance of balance. But read my words carefully; I didn’t say “go ahead and spend all of it.” Rather, I said “go ahead and spend some of it.”

It’s both expected and fun to spend some of the money given to you as a gift. Still, it would also be fun (although perhaps less expected) if you were to save some of it so that you could reach some of your other, longer-term financial goals sooner (i.e., a down payment for a home or car, new furniture, earlier retirement, etc.)

Rather than tempt yourself to spend all the money you just received, take half of the money (whether it be $20 or $200) and put it in a separate account. If you have an IRA, consider putting it in there. If you don’t have an IRA, now might be the perfect opportunity to set one up.

If you’ve ever declared that saving is so difficult because “It’s not like I have extra money floating around,” take advantage of this rare opportunity to use the money bobbing up and down right in front of you.

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