More often than not, you’ll see people letting go of their current lifestyle choices, hobbies, and interests in order to live more frugally. In fact, while planning out their budgets, the first few expenditures that people eliminate are those that offer entertainment, recreation, or a creative outlet. There’s no doubt that it’s a smart move to let go of discretionary expenses in order to save more, clear your debts faster or invest towards your financial goals. However, limiting yourself from living a fulfilling life is far removed from why you started earning in the first place.
The truth is, with a few smart moves, anyone can indulge themselves and follow their interests without having to burn a hole in your savings. Here are 5 tips to help you enjoy your hobby while solidifying your financial future.
- It’s About Practice & Time, Not Equipment: If you’re unable to get a hole-in-one with your current golf clubs, chances are, you’ll probably not get one with a new set of clubs either. Even though some hobbies are intrinsically expensive, pursuing one is never about the money you spend on it. The easiest way to develop your hobby is to simply worry about the hobby itself and not the equipment that you have. Some of the best artists and sportspersons come from conditions where having any gear was a luxury. So before you decide to swipe your card in the hopes of getting a better swing, head to the practice nets and give it another go.
- Stick To A Strict Budget: The crux of any financial plan is your budget. Without a proper budget, neither you nor your financial advisor would be able to build an effective investment plan. If you’re including your hobby in your financial plan, then you need to set a budget for that as well. And then, the hard part, stick to it. It is easy to be tempted and spend on whims on your hobby. Sticking to a budget is important as it not only keeps you financially stable but also ensures that you can carry on with your hobby in the future as well. Your budget should include not just your expenses for new equipment, but also the cost of maintaining your current gear. This way you can maximize the resale value of your equipment, and buy new equipment and upgrades less frequently.
- Prioritize: No matter how enjoyable you find your hobby to be, you should always regularly review how important it is to you. If you feel like there are other things that are more important and require a lot of your time, energy, and money, then you may want to wait till you deal with those first. Always keep in mind that you can get back to your hobby whenever you want to, so you’re not really losing out on much. In fact, you’re just making sure that you can enjoy your hobby without any worries later on.
- Make Money From Your Hobby: If you can, figure out a way to make your hobby pay for itself. There are numerous avenues that you can explore which can help you monetize your special skills. If all goes according to plan, you might even be able to make enough to invest in something else. Plus, if you are taking your hobby seriously enough to include it in your financial plan, why not go all the way and get some ROI from it as well? Keep in mind that you can’t let your hobby get in the way of your long-term financial goals. Unfortunately, hobby expenses are a potential opportunity cost. So if you’re investing money in your hobby, you’re missing out on the potential benefits of investing and growing your wealth. But then again, as we all know, happiness isn’t just about money. Get in touch with a certified financial advisor today, so you can plan your finances and have fun while doing it.