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How To Save Money According To Psychology

Saving well is something we all know we should do. But, whether it’s for a special treat, future plans or just for a rainy day, it can be easier said than done. If you find saving a challenge, you’re not alone.

Many people struggle to save

More than one third of Australians have less than $5,000 in savings and over half of those have less than $1,000. Almost 10% of Australians have less than $100 in savings.

Want to know how to save money? With interest rates going up and the rising cost of living, it can feel increasingly difficult to save. 

Pro Tip

So it’s important to understand that there are things within your control that you can do to get better at saving. And it all starts with your mindset.

How your mindset can impact your savings

You’ve probably heard the old saying: whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right. While you might not realise it, your mindset or how you think can actually have an impact on your money. So here’s some food for thought.

Your attitude towards saving can affect how well you save or not.

These include:

  • Self-efficacy – Do you believe you can save or is it “too hard”? Self-efficacy is your belief in your ability to achieve your goals and it is one of the strongest predictors of behaviour.

  • Self-critical vs self-compassionate – How do you speak about yourself when you think about saving? Do you tell yourself you’re terrible at it and you’ve never been able to do it self-critical? Or do you focus on the positive and tell yourself that it’s not easy but you’re making small gains self-compassionate?

  • Attitude towards saving – How you think about saving matters. Does it feel like a hassle or deprivation to save? Or do you feel good about building up financial security?

  • Costs/benefits of saving – Do you understand why you want to save? Have you stopped to consider the pros and cons of saving in the short and long term?

As well as thinking about saving, it’s also important to consider how you spend.


Overspending makes it hard to save. So it’s important to think about what you are spending your money on and why.

Overspending is often associated with:

  • Mindless or impulsive spending – without thinking it through, you’re buying things on autopilot, usually because it feels good.

  • Emotional spending – you’re buying to avoid feeling bad or to improve your mood

  • Ego-driven spending – you’re buying what you think you should have to keep up with others.

With both savings and spending, tiny things add up. For example, that $2 chocolate bar you get from the vending machine at work every afternoon could quickly add up to $500 a year.

On the flipside, using a round up tool can save you some spare change and quickly boost your savings.

When it comes to your mindset, it’s important to be intentional. Shift your savings mindset to one that motivates you to save more.

Top 9 money saving tips

Looking for easy ways to save money? Here are some money-saving tips you can try right now.

  • Set a savings goal – know exactly what you’re saving for.

  • Have a savings plan – work out how much you’ll need and how long it will take to reach your savings goal.

  • Automate your savings – take the thinking out of it and set up a regular transfer to automatically grow your savings each week.

  • Round-up transactions – Use a Round up service to turn your everyday spending into automatic saving.

  • Pay off some debt – it might not mean money in the bank today, but by reducing your debt you lower your interest repayments could save you money in the long run.

  • Refinance your mortgage – shop around for a better deal on your home loan.

  • Cancel automatic subscriptions and memberships – if you don’t use it, it’s time to lose it.

  • Reduce your spending – look at your bills and seek out cheaper alternatives or better deals.

  • Shop smarter – find ways to save on your grocery shop think buying generic, buying in bulk, stick to a shopping list and stocking up on regular-use items when they’re on special.

How to save money fast

Looking for ways to save money straight away? These hot tips should do the trick:

  • Freeze your spending – limit spending to the absolute essentials think no takeaways, no restaurant dinners, no new clothes.

  • DIY everything – start making your own lunch, mending your clothes, walking short trips instead of driving, cancelling the gym and working out at home.

  • Have a garage sale – spring clean your home and sell everything that doesn’t bring you joy

  • Spend extra income wisely – if you’re lucky enough to get a raise, a bonus or even some birthday cash, resist the temptation of a big splurge and save the extra money.

How to set a savings goal

Sometimes it can help to have some extra motivation to save.

1 Write it down – what are you saving for?

2 Make it a SMART goal:

  • Specific – what am I trying to achieve

  • Measurable – what does success look like?

  • Achievable – how will I achieve my goal?

  • Relevant – why will I achieve my goal?

  • Time-bound – when will I achieve my goal?

3 Break it down into steps – what actions do you need to take

4 Take action – what do you need to do to make it happen?

5 Track your progress – how are you doing?

How to keep track of your savings

Staying motivated and on track to meet your goals is easier when you take a bit of time to set yourself up for success. Consider setting up a dedicated savings account with automatic transfers to help you achieve your savings goal, so you can see immediately how you’re going. Bonus points for setting a calendar reminder to regularly review your savings. Or make the most of your banking app to set a savings goal and track your progress.

Everyday tips to save money

Looking for some quick wins to get and keep the ball rolling? Here are some everyday tips to save money.

  • Grocery shop at the end of the day

  • Compare prices online

  • Skip takeaway meals and coffees

  • Switch to generic brands

  • Compare and switch phone plans

  • Look for a high interest savings account

  • Avoid ATM fees

  • Turn off appliances when not in use

  • Get a library membership

  • Unsubscribe from marketing emails

  • Ask for discounts when you pay in cash

  • Try a staycation


What is a money mindset?

Your money mindset is how you think about your money – and it can actually have an impact on your finances. Whether you believe you can or believe you can’t, you’re probably right.

How can habits help me save money better?

Healthy money habits are practical lifestyle changes and practices to help you achieve your financial goals and have a better relationship with money. Developing good money habits can make it easier to save, and extra savings add up over time.

How much savings should I have?

How much you save depends on your income and your age but in general, aim to have at least 3 months of living expenses in your savings. So if your living expenses are $2,000 a month, work towards $6,000 in savings.


With Wisr App, you can stash away extra cash without even noticing.

Did you find this content helpful?

Disclaimer: This article contains general information only, and is not general advice or personal advice. Wisr Services does not recommend any product or service discussed in this article. You must get your own financial, taxation, or legal advice, and understand any risks before considering whether a product or service discussed in this article may be appropriate for you. We have taken reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but the information is subject to change. We may not update the article to reflect any change.

James is a marketing and communications professional with a passion for leading high-performance teams. He likes what he does… a lot.

James, Chief Growth Officer

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