Bonuses – raises – tax refunds:
Before you received your bonus, raise or tax refund you were living without that extra money. So after you receive that extra money, keep living within that same budget. And use the bonus, raise or tax refund to make your 401k contribution. If your employer matches your 401k contribution, increase your contribution and you will be increasing your employer’s match. An employer’s 401k match is free money and we could all use some free money.
Use the power of compounding to your advantage. You can do this by increasing your 401k contribution. The higher that your 401k account balance is, the more compounding will work for you because growth comes from growth. Compounding grows your account without your help.
Live below your means:
By spending less than what you earn, you will have the money to start a 401k contribution. Make it a habit to have extra money from every paycheck. And then make it a habit to invest it not spend it.
Your 401k contribution does not have to be a large dollar amount to make it produce results. Small contributions produce results too – the return just make take a little bit longer.