We’ve been fixing up our van for camping and travels this summer. As you can tell, Bambi approves. This has been a long week and I’m so looking forward to the weekend. So let’s get to relaxing, people! On with Link Love! Continue reading
Haul out the holly! Yup, you heard it here first, it’s the holiday season. The holiday season should be one of love, thankfulness and joy, but it can quickly turn into a season of stress, urgency and irritability. Much of my holiday stress comes from the cost of the holidays and simply trying to do too much. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think we have to totally dismiss all gift giving and holiday traditions, but we need to keep our expectations in check and practice minimalism during this joyous season. Here how I practice minimalism during the holidays. Continue reading
I feel like I have the physical stuff part of minimalism down pat. Give me clutter and I can conquer it! But the mental part, that part for me is much harder. I constantly want to fill my day with emails and websites and checking Instagram and Pinteresting ALL THE THINGS! Those things add little value to my life. Those things only add stress. To live a simpler, happier life, I need to let some technology go. Maybe one day, I’ll let all the technology go, but for now, here’s some ways to reduce the stress of technology. Continue reading
This week has been more stressful than normal which means a lot considering I usually run around in a constant state of insanity. I’m planning a conference at work, I’ve been seeing a nutritionist, so I’ve got some new food and workout routines and I’m of course, (attempting) to keep up with this blog. Although it’s stressful, I’m remembering my old buddy, Yoda‘s words “Do do not there is no try.” You all remember that time when I was a Jedi, right? Ha-ha.
In the past when things got stressful, I’d spend, spend, spend. I’d buy too many lunches and lattes. I’d “reward” myself too much. And I’d ultimately overdraft my bank account. But with my spending diet, the new year and living small, I finally feel that I’m beginning to turn over a new leaf. I’m not stress spending anymore. It’s taken me well over a year to learn how to not stress spend. It hasn’t been an easy process. Spending money is oh-so-easy. A few clicks on the computer when I felt like I “deserved” something or a quick little jaunt to Targé and suddenly I felt better. But what didn’t feel better was logging into my bank account at the end of each month.
And lately I’ve been finding better ways to cope with my stress. I’ve been doing light yoga, writing down my to-dos at the beginning of each day and trying to take weekends off work.
I’d love to hear about how you decompress and destress without spending money. Talk to me in the comments!
Personal finance makes me want bury my money in mason jars and go back the good ol’ trade system. But I’m not a skilled digger and money makes the world go round. If you don’t learn about it, you’ll get screwed over by someone or some corporation that knows more about it than you do. Hashtag truth.
That’s why this year my personal goal has been to learn more about my money and to actually save it. Maybe that’s also why this year has been one of the most frustrating times of my life. 🙂 As I sat on hold with the bank yet again… I thought I’m going to lose it. I’m going to end up yelling at this poor person on the other end and I’m going to pull out all of my money. But I didn’t do that because over the last year I’ve learned some pretty good coping tools for money frustrations.
1. Prepare for phone calls
You may already know that a simple phone call to your service providers could help you to save money on all kinds of bills– cable, internet, maybe even rent! And don’t forget to call your bank to get overdraft fees and other outrageous bank fees leveraged too. Just make sure you always have a plan for the conversations, so they go your way. Above all, remain calm and prepare to walk away, if necessary. You don’t really need cable anyway. (Ramit Sethi from I will Teach You To be Rich has some great scripts for those difficult phone calls.)
2. Keep pictures of your end-goal in appropriate places
Do you get stressed about money when you are sitting at your desk and balancing your checkbook? Keep a picture of your end-goal on your desk. Do you get stressed just looking in your wallet for cash? (I do!) Keep a picture of your financial end-goal in your wallet. By having pictures of that dreamy financial end-goal in strategic places you’ll create a quick comfort, you’ll be reminded of the goal, and it might even curb your spending.
3. Remember that saving is a journey
Patience, in general, is so, so hard. It can be even harder with saving because we don’t see those immediate rewards. Buying your lunch can be so much easier and temporarily more rewarding than saving that $10. By changing your mindset about saving, and learning to recognize that even the littlest bits count, you’ll reach your financial goals much faster.
4. Break up your financial to-do list into manageable chunks
This is a life-tip, but getting super motivated and creating a giant to-do list of stuff to do can actually hinder your progress. Make your financial to-do list manageable by breaking it into smaller chunks. Complete one small thing on your list every day. Be happy that you completed something and avoid being paralyzed by the stress of too many to-dos.
5. Talk about it
For many, money is a taboo talking point, but ya need to get it out. Worrying about money but not talking about it is a sure-fire recipe for a heart attack. Find someone you feel comfortable talking to, whether it be a relative, friend or psychiatrist and let it out.
6. Practice affirmations
Affirmations can seem silly and maybe even a little narcissistic. But don’t discount them! Say an affirmation enough and you’ll start to believe it. (Here’s an example one: “Every day I am attracting and saving more money.” But my favorite affirmation of all time is this little girl’s affirmation. After I saw her video I started adding “I can do anything good!” to my affirmations.
7. Meditate or pray about it
Pray about your money issues, if you are into that. If not, meditate about it. Meditation has made me a calmer and overall nicer person. It’s given me clarity about my money issues that I would have never reached on my own. And the best thing about meditation? It’s free!
8. Recognize your triggers and avoid them
Just going into Target triggers my impulse to spend, so I avoid Target. If I must, must go I bring my husband along and tell him to monitor my spending. Recognize when your finance habits get out of control. Do your spending habits swirl out of control during the holidays? Try a handmade holiday instead. Do you spend a ton of money on beauty products? Find ways cut your beauty routine. Make it into a game if you must! Just avoid those triggers!
9. As my life coach, Suze Orman says, “People first, then money, then things.”
I love Suze Orman, not only does she give sound money advice, she’s also compassionate. I love her sign-off, “People first, then money, then things.” Once you have your priorities straight, your finances are much easier to handle.
So how do you deal with your finances and stay sane? I’d love to hear your tips in the comments!