This ONE Hack Can Boost Your Savings
If you come by my office at lunch time, you will most likely smell the aroma of cumin, turmeric, and coriander emanating from the microwave where I heat up my lunch. I’m a spice loving woman. Before I started budgeting and getting serious about loan repayment, I would dish out mad money every day at work just to buy a bland piece of overcooked chicken and butter laden boxed mashed potatoes that I would then douse with Tabasco. Later, I would likely buy some Starbucks coffee or a snack from the vending machine. On average, I was spending at least $10 a day at work on food and drinks.
Let’s do the math:
$10 per day x a 5 day work week= $50 per week
$50 x 52 weeks in the year= $2600 per year
That’s adding up to some serious cash!
Now, what if I brought food from home every day and invested my savings? (I'm going to ignore the cost of the home food for now because it is peanuts compared to paying for eating out. Plus, even with bringing lunch in, my grocery costs have stayed the same or gone down because I end up throwing less food out.) Now, let’s bust out the compound interest calculator.
If I invested $2600 a year for an average 35 year working career, assuming a meager 5% return, I would have over $260,916.08!
Generated by www.bankrate.com
The average American at retirement age has $211,885 saved, according to this study by the Economic Policy institute.
So, by making this ONE simple change- bringing food to work consistently over 35 years- we can save MORE than the average American saves for all of retirement.
Those are some incredible numbers!
So not only am I making all of my coworkers jealous with my awesome aromatic food (either that, or they think I’m a weirdo… oh well), I am saving some serious cash!
Beyond the numbers, just this one change has made lunch much more enjoyable for me- I eat what I like! I get more time at lunch to just enjoy and take a break, because I don’t spend my lunch break standing in a line. And it makes me healthier because I can better control what goes in my body. I usually pack some snacks, too. Sometimes I dig into lunch early while I’m charting, so I don’t get hangry. That’s a real phenomenon, folks. Me hangry= no bueno. If I’ve already eaten by lunch, I can take that time to go for a walk or meditate or listen to a financial podcast. So not only am I winning at retirement but just making ONE change in my life, I’m also making my work life infinitely more enjoyable... A win-win situation all around!
Stay tuned and subscribe. Check out my strategy to being consistent with bringing lunch here!
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