Unique Ways to Solve Money Problems

Friday, February 14, 2014

Can Lifehacking save you money?

If you spend any amount of time on the internet, at some point you’ve probably thought lifehacking could solve your problems. Your money, your cooking, your career. It’s an incredibly creative and seductive approach.

If you haven’t heard of it, “lifehacking” refers to the practice of using a series of creative tips and tricks (a.k.a. lifehacks) to make your life more productive. A lot of people learnt about it when this article did the rounds last year. Ever got frustrated with tangled power cords? Ever wanted to know how to make a brownie in a mug? Problem solved.

But can it do anything truly useful? Can lifehacks, for example, help solve your money problems? Surprisingly, yes – provided you have the right source.

A website like 1000lifehacks.com is more about small tips and interesting pieces of trivia than practical ideas. Something like Lifehacker.com, though, offers many creative fixes for solving your money problems. More than that, their articles go into satisfying depth about how to apply each of their fixes.

Here, for example, is a great article on eating well while shopping cheap. It outlines everything from setting up a meal plan and sticking to it – to how to avoid falling for standard marketing tricks as a shopper.

Elsewhere, you’ll find creative budget fixes like budgeting for your activities instead of your money or simply the best way to save money taking your lunch to work.

The kicker with all of these lifehacks is that they all require changing some habits. That’s a struggle. Even if you know something’s a good idea that will save you money, you might not have the willpower to always do it. Changing a habit is one of the hardest things anyone can do and sometimes we need extra motivation.

My personal advice? Start by downloading an app like Lift which is great  for forming habits. If there’s a lifehack that could help solve your money problems, but you’re having difficulty committing to it – an app like Lift might fix you right up.  When I had trouble getting back into exercise last year, I used Lift to help give me a nice gentle boost to make it a nice, regular habit. It’d be really handy if you’re trying to remember to pack your own healthy lunch to work every day, or starting a new meal plan.

Lifehacks: they could save you money, and there's definitely no harm in trying.