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Droppin’ Dimes

Being a basketball fan, I’m aware that when a player makes a pass that leads directly to a goal being scored, that player is credited with an ‘assist’. These ‘assists’ are sometimes called ‘droppin’ dimes’. After games in the locker rooms you often hear players chatting among themselves, saying things like; “how many dimes did he drop tonight?” In basketball, hockey and baseball, when you make an assist, you’re ‘droppin a dime’. In life, when you’re ‘droppin’ a dime’, you’re making an entirely different kind of assist to yourself that will have a immediate impact and have lasting importance. Let me tell you how. One thing that’s lost in the seemingly neverending conversations about the economy and all the gloom and doom surrounding all the home foreclosures and people losing jobs is a vital fact that might have been a huge factor and changed history for so many. Savings! Three years ago, I reported on my weekly radio show that many Americans officially had reached a point where they had zero savings. Didn’t save a dime. In all probability, Americans’ savings are in a negative condition at this point in time. “The ability to save money is the cornerstone of building wealth.” “A penny saved is a penny earned.” We’ve all heard these quotes time and time again, but in spite of that saving money remains a lost art. So many Americans live outside their means that it’s considered normal to do so. It’s not something to worry about…I mean, we’ll catch up, right? So, for many, saving money is a joke. I’ve heard people say; I don’t have to save money because the equity that’s building in my home is my savings. NO, IT’S NOT! As so many are now painfully aware of, equity is not savings…only savings is savings. I was taught that you should save for several reasons. 1. For special purchases like hoimes, cars, vacations and college educations. 2. To be able to take advantage of special purchase opportunities. 3. And, the main reason is to build a nest egg, to be prepared for a rainy day, that unexpected medical emergency, some dark clouds hovering…kinda like now. In other words…your own personal bailout plan! I was also taught to save 10 cents from every dollar I earned. Just like it says in the story by George S. Clason, “The Richest Man In Babylon”…”Some of what you earn should be yours to keep.” Ok, you’ve figured it out…now you know what it means to make a personal assist, to drop a dime. That remains my personal savings habit to this day. Investments…you say! They’re great and can be a part of a healthy financial picture, but investments are not the same as savings! You can invest, you can buy a home, but saving 10 cents on every dollar is what will really deliver returns during dark times . Some people argue that savings accounts offer too small of a return on their money to be meaningful. What they’re really saying is they don’t have the discipling to save or they don’t know how to save or they just don’t want to. But, and hear this…it’s not about the return…it’s all about the money saved…it’s about droppin’ the 10 cents on every dollar earned. Imagine of you’d have saved 10 cents on every dollar you’ve earned in the last 10 years. How much would you have today. Well, if you earned $40,000.00 a year and saved just 10 cents on every dollar earned over that time, you’d have $40,000.00 right now! IN CASH! No credit applications to fill out, no waiting for approval. Wow! Would $40,000.00 make a difference in your life right now? Imagine how many people could be helped by having $40,000.00 in cash in their bank account right now to use any way they chose AND without having to pay it back! So, how do you drop this dime? It starts with paying yourself first. This is the hard part…paying yourself first. You can do that by setting up an automatic transfer from your checking account directly into your savings account. Also, you can deduct savings from your paycheck and have it directly deposited into your savings account so you never even see it on your paycheck. Savings should be your priority, so don’t just say that you’ll save what’s left over at the end of the month. That never, ever works. What does work is droppin’ a dime from every dollar you earn. This works well and before you know it, you’ll have a tidy sum in savings. Over decades, you’ll be a millionaire…that also works for me. ~ Mack Newton