Finances is one of many areas of adulting many struggle with at some point in their lives. I will admit it is an anxiety inducing topic as I wake up each day wondering will I ever make enough to meet my needs and the needs of my family? Not to mention the fear that I will be in debt for the rest of my life. I am sure many can relate to these thoughts and more but the one thing the craziness of 2020 has pushed me to do is work past my fears. This begins by changing the way I think and feel about money.
Knowledge is Power
Midway through the year I began to research the topic of finance from debt recovery, budgeting, investing, to creating a side-hustle. To be honest most of my reading involved the later half of that list because my focus was making more money. It seems on the outside that the more money you make the better off you will be not only financially but also in life. Entrepreneurs appear to lead the most free and fulfilled life. They go where they want when they want. But the truth is they hustle and work their tail off every single day to achieve this level of freedom. When I took a closer look at the lives of those success stories who openly share how they made it, I realized the effort behind the glamour. That lead me to start focusing on the beginning half of my list.
The amount of free information about alleviating debt, and creating and maintaining a budget is overwhelming. I have learned to focus on one article, post, or book at a time. Another great source, since most of us live on social media anyway, are the many accounts held by those who have been through serious poverty and lived to tell the tale. One of my favorite and most informative pages to follow is The Financial Diet (TFD). Run by experts who know from personal experience the struggle is real, following their page will lead to so many other knowledgeable pages. TFD also offers opportunities to learn through various webinars and events at a low cost. I recently attended their virtual conference The Big Reset 2020. The one-day event held via zoom brought so many great speakers together not only for your bank account but also for your body and mind.
Evaluating Your Relationship With Money
There were so many takeaways from the TFD event but one that resonates with me is establishing what type of relationship I have with money. Writing down my expenses I have come to find that money is my therapist. Most of money goes to student loan and credit card debt where the other chunk is dedicated to food and retail therapy. Looking through my statements I noticed a trend between impulse buys and bad days. Learning to take a mindful approach to spending I have started making grocery lists, and comparison shopping for items I think I need. So far I have saved $200 in the past week not buying things that I realized was not really needed.
Make a Plan For Your Money Goals
Create goals for your money and then examine those goals. Ask yourself why they are important? One of my goals has been to purchase a second (slightly bigger) home. I am still dissecting this one but what I have learned so far is that what I really want is a space to claim and make my own. Instead of investing in more real estate I am working on claiming an area of my current home that is not a compromise and just for me.
At the end of the day being mindful in any area of your life consists of education and practice. Learn more about your money needs and the best ways to maximize it. Take baby steps toward a mindful approach to avoid feeling overwhelmed. You work hard for your money so its important to apply it toward a great purpose. . . your great purpose.
I am grateful for all the many ways to learn, my ability to grow, opportunities to create and achieve goals, and my green smoothie. Think about at least 3 things you are grateful for, it is a guaranteed mood booster.
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