A woman reviews finances on laptop computer

Healthy Savings Habits

Nov 6, 2020
Empower Insights

Simple exercises for strengthening your financial future

It’s the great debate.

How long does it take to form a habit?

Whether you’re trying to stick to a household budget, pay your recurring bills on time (every time) or avoid splurging on that morning gourmet coffee, you know enhancing your spending approach means maintaining a positive mindset from the very first step. Most experts, after all, claim it can require weeks, months or potentially years to change certain behaviors based on your particular lifestyle.It’s also been suggested that repetitive actions can make up more than 40% of a person’s daily agenda.1,2

As a leading professor of psychology explains, “Habits are an adaptive feature of how the brain works.”3

But, no matter your brainpower, willpower or superpower, establishing any new exercise simply starts with having a planin place, especially when it comes to creating a successful formula for your financial future. In fact, there are several productive patterns you can incorporate into your normal routine today — or implement along the way — that can help you reach your retirement goals tomorrow.4

Don’t sweat it if you can’t introduce each healthy habit at this very moment. You’re still in good shape! Focus on mastering a few of the solutions right now and then applying the rest of the tips as you see fit.

a father and daughter drop coins into multiple money saving jars

Raise it up

In the sports world, the number 10 represents a wide array of winning achievements on the field of play.

Ten yards for a first down in football.

Ten pins for a strike in bowling.

Ten points for a perfect mark in gymnastics.

As far as elevating your game to the next level, you can experience the power of 10, too! Empower research reveals that individuals who add at least 10% of their annual salary to their retirement plan account are on pace to replace 100% (or more) of their working income for their future.4 Remember, your version of extra innings will be here before you realize it. So, when you’re ready to hit your stride — and hit your savings strategy out of the park — all you have to do is increase your deferral rate.

Talk it out 

Emails, text messages and social media posts may be convenient ways to communicate with your loved ones.  

However, if you’re feeling nostalgic, there is something to be said about engaging in an old-school conversation and discussing your financial situation with your spouse or partner. Of course, 67% of adults who speak regularly with their significant other about their hopes for their retirement journey are better prepared for the future than those who rarely chat or remain quiet about their savings dreams.4

So, spill the beans. All of them.

Touching base often can ensure you get on — and stay on! — the same page as you pursue your passions together.5

Write it down

Just like shopping with a menu of specific items to buy at the supermarket, drawing up an official blueprint for your retirement picture can help you follow a more fruitful path and gain control of your finances.6

You could say it’s a recipe for a success.

Not surprisingly, Empower insight shows that people who draft a formal financial outline for their future are more hungry for their next adventure when compared with those individuals who have yet to put pen to paper.4Jotting down your grocery list of wishes for retirement — like where you want to live, what activities you want to do and when you want to retire — can keep you on track as you get older.  

Seek it out

Could you use a push in the right direction?

Stop and ask for help!

If you’re stuck in neutral when you’re mapping out your long-term investing itinerary, accessing professional guidance can steer you toward your desired destination. Contact your employer to discover what advice options, resources and tools are available to help you navigate your route to retirement.4

Start your healthy savings habits today with an Empower Investment Account

1 The New York Times, Tara Parker-Pope, “How to build healthy habits,” February 2020.

2 NPR, Hidden Brain podcast, ”Creatures Of Habit: How Habits Shape Who We Are — And Who We Become,” December 2019.

3 Time, Cassie Shortsleeve, “5 Science-Approved Ways to Break a Bad Habit,” August 2018.

4 Empower Institute, “Scoring the Progress of Retirement Savers 2020,” September 2020.

5 Empower Retirement, “Let’s talk retirement,” May 2020.

6 CNBC, Alenandria White, “11 tips for saving money at the grocery store,” September 2020.

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