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Money is a complicated thing. Really, It's a simple thing, but we have our ways of making it difficult. There is so much emotional value associated with money for me that I find myself feeling guilty for spending it, guilty for not spending it, and even worse for not sticking to my financial plan at all. In place of my strife, I decided to take it a step back and have a mindful money day. I felt that maybe it would lead me to some conclusion about my finances overall.
This post is sponsored by Cinch Financial. All opinions are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Miss Millennia Magazine possible!
I decided to go this route since I recently read in a New York Times Article that one of the main issues we have as consumers and blowing our budgets is that we just are not paying attention. Instead, we are mindlessly spending money. I went into this experiment with the thought that one day probably would not make that big of a difference. Surprisingly, however, it did! I want to share the five things I noticed that happened when I spent a day being more mindful with my money.
1. You Spend Less Money
One of the first things I noticed when I started my mindful money day was that I spent less money. I know the goal of my day was just to observe. But, I could not help but take action on my thoughts that were telling me not to spend. For example, Right now I subscribe to an email with daily items at low prices. If there is something I like I quickly sign up for an item since they run out quickly.
But, on my mindful money day, I took a minute and thought about it. Where would the income from this come in my budget? Is it coming from my groceries? My fun spending? My travel savings? This thought was not me judging myself but rather putting things into perspective. Is this item I am buying worth me dishing out cash from my travel savings account? If the answer is no, then it makes the decision-making process that much easier. I did this same thought process for a Starbucks coffee and a trip to McDonald's on the same day. Being mindful with my money saved me a whole $15.74 in a day just from thinking about where in my budget it was coming from.
2. You Feel More Confident About Your Money
After dodging those three threats to my wallet, I felt good! If I could make just a few good decisions like that a day, I bet I would feel as confident as I did. Just like any good friend, sometimes you have to defend your money from all the temptations to spend it on stuff you don't care that much about. And since I was feeling so confident with my money, I whipped out my budget and made some adjustments to it. I made it, so that had more cash to the budgets that I cared more about and took some away from the ones I didn't. For example, I removed some money out of my “eat out” budget and put more into my “travel” budget.
3. You Feel Less Guilt About Spending
Since I was doing some thinking about what I did spend my money on, I did not have the added guilt. No buyers remorse for me! This means the items I did decide to buy were that much more meaningful. For example, I purchased a course on growing your blog. I did my practice of asking myself, Where would the income from this come in my budget? And since I had a portion of my budget dedicated to education each month, it was a no-brainer to spend in this area. And the best part, no guilt! When I spent money, I did so guilt-free!
4. You Realize How Much Money You Actually Spend in a Day
One of the most revealing things I noticed during my mindful money day was how much money I spent in a given day. Between shopping on Amazon to buying courses to buying snacks, I could easily spend over $75 in one day if I was not paying attention. And taking a moment just to realize how much is going out the door is enough to make you hang onto your cash a little tighter. Not to say you shouldn't spend anything.
You earn money so you can spend it obviously. But it should be devoted to things you care about. When I thought about it, I had to ask myself questions like, do you really care about having name brand dish soap over traveling to your wedding in Cancun? It was an obvious no for me. But for someone else, name brand dish soap may be a priority over other things. But the beautiful thing about it is that it's your money to control. Just make sure that your spending is not controlling you.
5. You Help Your Future You
One thing that I liked about having a mindful money day is that I was regularly thinking about the future all day. I was thinking about trips coming up, someone's birthday happening next month and the plane tickets I still needed to get for the family reunion. And while thinking about these things, it made me smile knowing that I had so many exciting things to look forward to. And it became that much easier to hold off on my caramel macchiato.
When you are thinking about your money today, it's like giving yourself money to your future self. Whether that future self is tomorrow, a month from now or several years from now. I spent several times in the day, thinking about that person, and what she needs and it felt good! Not grim, or scary. It felt nice to know I was looking out for present me and future me. I am sure being mindful with your money will do the same!
A Tool to Have Mindful Money Days…Every Day
As positive as this whole experience was for me, it was tough thinking about this every single time I used my credit card. I know that this practice will become routine over time, but I thought there had to be a tool that helps with this. And I found Cinch Financial. They describe themselves as your personal CFO looking at things like your cash flow, debt, savings, insurance rates and much more. After analyzing all that data it then gives you advice on what you should hit your financial freedom goals.
If it sounds unusual, that's because it is! The best part is that they do not do sponsorships through credit cards or loan companies. That means that all the advice they give you is based on what is best for you. Which means, (here is the catch) that there is a monthly fee to pay for the service. I know, I know. But knowing a comprehensive, totally dedicated CFO is working for you is worth it, right? My growing savings account thinks yes.
Lucky enough, they are offering FREE lifetime subscription to those who join the waitlist for a short period. So you should join NOW by going here to do so.
Cinch will always be mindful on your behalf and will optimize your financial life based on the way you already live your life – not just shouting at you to change your budget, stop eating out, or spending your money. I already added myself to the waitlist and can’t wait to see how this app will ultimately change my life! If being mindful for one day had this much of an impact, I can only imagine what a tool like this can do!
If you want to learn more about Cinch Financial, you should check them out by going to their blog, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account. Have you ever tried having a mindful money day? What happened during it? Let us know in the comments!