If you want to get your finances in shape to live your dream life, you might think you’ll need to make major sacrifices. However, David Bach, author of “Automatic Millionaire” and “The Latte Factor,” has a different view. Known for his timeless truths on managing money, he teaches that making small changes and keeping a long-term perspective can help you get rich.
In a video on his YouTube channel, Bach discussed these three secrets that can guide you toward achieving financial freedom.
Secret No. 1: Pay Yourself First
Bach’s philosophy emphasizes prioritizing saving for your financial goals and overpaying for your everyday expenses. In his words, “You have to decide that when you earn a paycheck, whether you’re self-employed or an employee, the first person you’re going to pay is you.”
This “pay-yourself-first” approach means you’ll put money in your savings and investing accounts before spending anything on housing, debts, taxes and other costs. Bach recommends saving an hour’s earnings daily — much more than the 15 minutes Americans save on average.
He also advises using a tax-deferred account, such as an IRA or 401(k), for your retirement savings. You can then use options like high-yield savings accounts for your other savings goals. For example, you may want separate savings funds for a big vacation and your children’s college.
Secret No. 2: Don’t Pay Yourself First by Budgeting
If you’ve tried sticking to a traditional budget, you may have given up due to frustration or all the effort into using one. Acknowledging the challenges of budgeting and the roadblocks it creates to achieving financial freedom, Bach offered some unconventional advice: “You’ve got to throw the budget out.”
Instead of trying to follow a budget and having some money left over for your goals, keep the concept of paying yourself first in mind. Bach suggests automating your investing and savings by periodically transferring money from your pay. That way, there’s no doubt whether you’ll put aside money.
To make this work more seamlessly, use direct deposit for all income. Keeping the daily savings goal in mind, you can then set up recurring deposits to your savings and investment accounts.
Secret No. 3: Live Rich Now
Making financial changes to achieve financial freedom shouldn’t mean completely sacrificing a joyful life now. Bach explained, “I don’t want you to wait until retirement to live rich.”
He suggests looking at what matters in your life and using your savings plan to get you where you want to be as soon as possible. For example, maybe you’re considering escaping debt or making a major investment. Along the way, you’ll want to make careful spending decisions and find ways to cut back. However, this doesn’t have to mean extreme sacrifice.
Additionally, Bach reminds you about some non-financial steps to live a richer life. These can include spending time in nature, helping others and keeping yourself in good physical health. The key is taking some time to enjoy life.
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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: ‘Automatic Millionaire’ Author David Bach: These Are the 3 Secrets to Financial Freedom