Organize Your Life to Save Money and Stress

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When you organize your life, you put yourself in a position of control and one in which you can save some money.

organize your life (2)

Last week I woke up to an alert from the bank. I had grabbed the wrong checkbook last week when I paid a bill. Needless to say, I got online, transferred some funds, and made a quick phone call. In the end, I was out a $35 bank fee and a few gray hairs.

If I’d been a little more organized — or double checked when I asked myself if it was the right checkbook — I would be $35 richer and a brunette.

Truly, when you organize your life, you can save money. When you don’t, you might lose more than a few bucks.

Of course I know better now. I knew better before, too. Sometimes, it takes a few burns to help one get her act together. You know what I mean?

How You Can Organize Your Life and Save Money and Stress

Consider these eight areas where you can organize your life, save money, and feel a little more with-it.

1. Wallet

Do you know where your important cards and documents are? Is it easy to find your insurance card when they ask for it at the doctor? Can you find everything you need within a few seconds of opening your wallet?

If you said no to any of those, consider cleaning out your wallet this week. You will be surprised what you find.

Be sure to check the balances on gift cards and make a plan to use them up. That’s money right there!

Organize Your Life

2. Taxes

Tax season is still six months away. Do we really need to be thinking about it now? Yes! Do you know where are all the receipts are and have you inputted them in your records? Do you get stressed out every March because you procrastinated? Are your files in order?

Think through your tax filing process and consider now how you can revamp it next year. The tax man never fails to commeth, so plan now so you can save yourself some stress and maybe some money, too.

If you’re a business owner, now is a great time to check in with your CPA to see where you stand and if there are any investments or purchases you can make to offset your tax.

3. Bills

What’s your bill pay situation like? Are you current on everything or do you have a stack of mail to sort through? Will you grab the wrong checkbook?

Take fifteen minutes to brush up on your bill-paying protocol. It will save you a lot of stress and possibly $35 later in the game.

4. Clothes

Those sale texts from Old Navy are beckoning, aren’t they? Do you really need what they are offering? Possibly not. Take a gander at your closet as well as your kids’. Do you need to do a wardrobe makeover?

Ditch the things that don’t fit or don’t work for you. Donate things that the kids have outgrown. Know what you have so you won’t overbuy and so that you’ll be ready to hit the shops when you see that killer sale.

Organize Your Life

5. Kitchen

Your kitchen is probably the most used room of the house — and the one where a substantial emergency fund is stored. Yes, emergency fund. You’ve probably got more food in the house than you think.

It’s easy to keep buying more groceries when we’re bored or need inspiration. It also makes it easy to hoard extras. By organizing your kitchen you will know better what you have and what not to buy more of. You’ll find it easier to do a pantry challenge or use things up before they go to waste.

6. Your Days

Every day is a bank account. Not in money, of course, but in hours. We each get to decide how we’re going to spend them. We can waste them or we can be productive, either for our own well-being or that of someone else.

When we organize our days, we are able to make the most of the minutes we have. We can do great things when we give every hour a purpose, even if it’s to rest or play with our kids.

I would love to know what you do to organize your life.

How does organizing save YOU money and stress?

About Jessica Fisher

I believe you can get great meals on the table -- and still keep that pretty smile on your face.

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Comments

  1. These are all fantastic reminders. As much as I’ve enjoyed summer, by this point in the season I feel like the wheels are definitely starting to come off. Looking forward to using these tips to re-group!

  2. Leslie says:

    RE Cleaning our your wallet, two things. My Safeway store has a machine that you can use to turn in gift cards for cash, so that may help people. Also, I highly recommend making photocopies of the fronts and backs of the cards in your wallet. I’ve had my wallet stolen twice over the past 25 years and it sure came in handy to know what was in there, what the card numbers were, and how to contact the stores quickly to cancel them. And never keep checks in your purse or wallet. We just had to close our checking account when my husband’s laptop bag was stolen and it had blank checks in it.

    • Erika says:

      Thank you mentioning that such a machine exists, Leslie! We do not have one at our grocery store, but I will now be on the lookout for one when we travel.

    • Great idea about photocopies. I did that for passports when we went abroad, but never thought to do that at home.

  3. cherie says:

    Great thoughts as always – sorry about your ‘stupid tax’ as I call it when I do stuff like that LOL

    A couple of small things that have helped me a ton

    1. Teeny wallet – I use one of these [so pretty :)] http://www.amazon.com/Sakroots-Artist-Circle-Flap-Keychain/dp/B00HXD0PFC and I can’t over burden it – it won’t close 🙂

    2. Important papers: Always just a-tumble – now each individual’s papers [passport, SS card, birth certificate, baptism etc] are in big freezer ziplocs in my file thing – so I can just grab it when someone has forms to fill out etc – but also protected from any leaks/flooding etc just in case [after hurricane sandy I’m now aware of more things than in the past!] Less chance of losing things as I shuffle through too – for a basically messy person this has made a big difference!

    • Heather M says:

      I LOVE #2! I’m going to create this for our family! Thanks for a great idea.:)

    • Re: wallet, do you put it in a purse? I really need to downsize. Current cross-body bag is weighing me down.

      • Cherie says:

        Only when I really need to tote other things – my kids are getting older – youngest is 12 – so I don’t carry much. I do have bags I use and yes, drop it in, when we actually need more stuff – but I find that’s rarer and rarer – I can tuck my glasses in the neck of my blouse or on a chain if I think I’ll need them, a chapstick in my pocket. You have the epipen so that’s something that needs carrying – but otherwise I guess my point is reconsider what you MUST have all the time – I keep benadryl in my car for my allergic one [liquid in the disposable things – rarely need it but when I do, well of course I’m glad it’s there] but I am amazed at how often I can carry nothing but that keychain and my phone. . .

  4. The freezer bags are such a great idea! Also easy to grab in case of emergency evacuation!
    Ps. I’ve called the bank after I’ve done something dumb like that, and they refunded my overdraft fee. I felt like an idiot calling, knew I deserved the few, but sucked it up and called anyway. They were soooo nice.

    • Before we sold our rental house (and paid through the nose to pay the negative), we had a good sized balance at the bank. Since they give ZILCH for interest, I had no qualms about asking for that money back. haha! Now that our balance is so much smaller, I figured I’d take my spanking. 😉

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