Last year, the Royal Bank of Canada released some startling stats concerning the saving habits of Canadians. According to the study, nearly 40% of Canadians admitted that they were saving less than in previous years.Sadly, little has changed in 2012.According to a recent article in The Globe and Mail, the average Canadian's consumer debt now sits at $25,960. And while the pace at which Canadians are accumulating debt appears to be decreasing, so too does the rate at which we're contributing to our savings. Data from the RBC report shows that 30% of Canadians find it difficult to be disciplined about saving. Apparently excuses are far easier to come than good financial habits. If you want to ensure a stable financial future for yourself and your family, now's the time to toss away excuses and focus on a solid savings strategy. Of course, old habits die hard. Should you find yourself defaulting back to these common excuses not to save – stop! We’ll show you how to pause, reconsider and change up your thinking (and actions) with the tips that follow...1) Excuse: I don't know how to saveGo look in your closet. If you collect shoes or purses, jeans or jewelry, you know how to save. It's simply a matter of changing your thoughts about money and making a conscious effort to collect that instead of sling backs. You know how to do it; you just need to commit to actually doing it.If you're convinced that you don't know how to save, start small, and then stick to it. Once you've taught yourself how to habitually save, try and up your contributions. It's not as hard as you might think.2) Excuse: I don't have enough money to save properlyThis excuse is becoming more and more common thanks to the recent recession. However, not having any money left at the end of the month doesn't necessarily mean you can't afford to start saving. Before you blame your puny paycheque for your sporadic saving, take a good long look at your impulse purchases. Finding money for saving doesn't mean you need to stop eating or live in the dark. It does, however, mean that you might have to look for ways to reduce your spending in order to free up some resources.3) Excuse: I don't have the timeFifteen minutes – that's all it takes to set up an automatic deposit from your chequing account into your savings account or retirement fund. If you can make time to go to the gym or watch your favourite television show, you can make time to save for your future.4) Excuse: I'm not smart enough to invest wiselyMany Canadians assume that saving means investing in the stock market or some other fancy financial plan. Don't let sophisticated financial products and plans scare you away from saving. Instead, stop your bank and ask to talk to one of their trained financial specialists. Their job is to help you better understand your savings options through the use of plain language and straightforward advice. 5) Excuse: I have too much debt If you're in debt, you should definitely focus your efforts on getting rid of it. However, that doesn’t mean you should ignore your savings entirely. In fact, it's more important than ever to save when you're in debt so that you can avoid digging yourself deeper. A small emergency savings fund will make it easier for you to avoid your credit card whenever an unexpected expense inevitably arises. 6) Excuse: I'm too young to worry about savingNews flash – there is no age minimum on a savings account. In fact, it's actually easier to save when you're young. You don't have a family yet, you're not paying off a mortgage, your bills are relatively small; now's the perfect time to make a point of paying yourself. 7) Excuse: Interest rates are too low to botherWhat will give you a better long-term return on your dollar – a savings account with a 1.20% interest rate or a new jacket? Putting money in the bank is never a bad thing; sure, we'd all prefer our money to pull in a big return, but sometimes that's just not possible. Just because savings plans aren't ideal at the moment doesn't give you the permission to blow your entire paycheque. 8) Excuse: I have an RRSP, so that's good enoughWhile it's great that you're putting money into your retirement savings fund, you'll still need to have some savings that you can access before you're ready to receive your senior's discount. A savings plan will help you handle unexpected financial crises throughout your adult life.9) Excuse: My partner makes enough to take care of us bothHaving a main breadwinner is all well and good, until something happens and he or she is no longer there to help support you. Everyone needs to take responsibility for his or her personal financial well-being. The longer you rely on someone else, the harder it will be to depend on yourself later on.10) Excuse: I can't take it with meTrue, but let's be honest – you're not always going to be young and healthy. A savings cushion will make your golden years a great deal more comfortable. Your savings will also help support your family when you're gone, so be smart. If not for you, at least think of them.It’s about living for the futureExcuses are mental escape routes that enable us to avoid tackling important financial issues. The best way to manage your financial plan is to face it head on. Why wait until tomorrow to do what you should have been doing yesterday? Commit to a savings plan today in order to guarantee yourself a more secure tomorrow for yourself and those you hold close.