Successful personal finance management is important for good health and happy life, and if you understand how to save using the 52 week challenge then you are on the road to financial success. Financial success does not mean having loads of money to throw parties. It has everything to do with having money that can help you through every financial hurdle that comes your way and indulge a little in things that make life worth living. One thing is, you can never have enough money in this world. Even Jeff Bezos, the richest man modern history has ever seen is still waking up early to go make more.
The 52 week saving challenge has been around for quite sometime only that the idea recently became popular in Kenya through an M-Shwari initiative. The idea is to help you save every week for the 52 weeks of the year and have some money that you can use on any project or emergency. We will first show you how the idea works through the chart below:
Three reasons why the 52 week challenge is the best saving plan
- It is simple and manageable. The amount of money you put aside every week is money you may not have accounted for if you didn’t have a saving plan. In this case, you start with only KES 50 in week one and make it KES 100 in week two, and so on.
- You can dictate the amount you want to save regularly. While the simplest plan gives you the option of starting with KES 50 in week one, you can recreate the plan and start with KES 100 or KES 200 and scale upwards. You should however be disciplined and faithful to the plan you choose.
- It creates in you the discipline of saving. Now, if you have ever read the book The Richest Man in Babylon, which is hailed as one of the best books ever for financial management, you will notice that one of the lessons is the ability to put aside a tenth of what you earn for yourself before spending the rest on other expenses. Learn to pay yourself, not through indulgence but by saving. It is the golden rule of creating wealth.
When you faithfully follow the plan, you will have at least KES 68,900 by the end of week 52. That is money you didn’t feel any pain saving.
Ways to keep yourself financially disciplined
- Do not use home bank. You might think that you are too disciplined to break into your own bank, but truth is when you are planning on something novel like the 52 week saving challenge, problems also have their committee meeting on how to visit you in five weeks’ time. Open a bank account that will only allow you withdrawal at the end of the year if you do not have an MShwari account.
- Do not save on MPESA. The temptation is big. MPESA is the closest platform you can ever have for keeping money, but it is also the easiest platform to use when spending money in Kenya. Once you need to pay for something at the shop and you do not have enough liquid cash, the option is MPESA. Do not lie to yourself that you will refund the money. It may never happen and you will live regretting it.
- Save every week according to the plan. It might seem a wise idea to skip some weeks and then deposit bulk cash covering the skipped weeks. If you make this a habit, it means you are not disciplined enough. It will also make you feel like you are taking too much money from your pocket. It is easier to deposit KES 50, 150, 300, 500 every week for four weeks than to make a lump some KES 1000 in the first month.
- Do not budget with your savings unless you are saving for a particular project. If you are saving for a holiday or for school fees or for that house utility gadget you have always wanted, well and good. But it is better to save then plan latter on what you want to do with the money. Probably your needs would have changed by that time.
Hopefully, these tips will help you have some cash in the New Year 2020 after the festive season that leaves many people broke. If you have not yet started on this plan, you can still catch up when January is still virgin. All the best!