Fast Living

DSCN9414Patience is the companion of wisdom.
Saint Augustine

It’s no wonder so many people seem to be short on patience these days. We live in a world of fast food, instant communication, one-click online ordering and TV shows, movies and books that are available anytime, anywhere someone wants to access them.

The truth is, most things that are important take time. It takes time to learn something new and then do it often enough to become comfortable with or master it. It takes time to heal a broken heart and grieve. It takes time to consider the benefits and costs of making a decision. It takes time to take care of yourself.

When you don’t take the time it’s not unusual for that to have an adverse effect on you. People who are hurting or stressed often spend money to fill the emotional hole inside or stop spending money on things that could make their lives easier or more joyful. Give yourself permission to be patient with yourself today.

Money Saving Tip

saving moneySign up for automatic bill paying whenever possible in order to avoid late fees. Besides the additional penalties, late charges can lower your FICO score and result in higher interest rates on future loans. By the way, did you know Americans spend $22 billion dollars a year in late credit card charges, fees and penalties?

 

What made you smile today?

What made you proud of your money choices today?

Life Is Not About Money

Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty;
not on your past misfortunes of which all men have some.
Anonymous

You’ve heard statements like this so many times it may sound trite. It’s not! Today is the day to take it to heart. Life is not about money. Life is about making each day count in some way that is significant to you and appreciating what you have.

Money can provide the choices of the restaurant for dinner, but it can’t buy someone who really cares about you to share it with. Having someone with whom you’re comfortable and who cares about you counts a lot more than where you’re eating or how much the meal costs. Having a safe place to call home is more important than the way your house is decorated. Once you switch your focus to what you do have in your life and discover the upside of your experiences and relationships, you are likely to see more opportunities come your way.

This isn’t magical thinking. When you focus on what brings value into your life you are more likely to meet people who share those values and, by being positive, they will enjoy being with you. There is the very real possibility that those relationships will lead to social and professional opportunities that can improve your bottom line, but that is a secondary benefit. Stay focused on what’s important without attaching a monetary value to it.

Money Saving Tip

saving moneyGet organized! Gather all important financial documents and receipts in a central location. Don’t delay just because you don’t have an organized place for them. Dedicate a box, bag or drawer and put everything important in one place.

 

What made you smile today?

What made you proud of your money choices today?

Creative Times and Spaces

Creativity seems to thrive in particular times or places…We can benefit by …establishing idea-friendly times and places.
Chic Thompson

Don’t you love it when you get a really great idea? It feels so good to magically know the perfect solution, the perfect gift or the perfect idea. That Aha! moment is awesome. Think back to the circumstances of that moment. Where were you? What were you doing? What time of day was it? What else was happening (or not happening?)

In his book, What a Great Idea! 2.0, Thompson shares a few of the most common places people identified as sparking their most creative ideas: in the shower/bath, commuting to work, sitting on the toilet (really!), falling asleep or waking up, exercising, in the middle of the night and performing manual labor.

Once you identify the most likely time, place or circumstances for your own creative high, use that information to consciously think about something you need to approach in a new way. Be prepared to write it down so you don’t lose your thought. You have the answers you need even if they may be hard to come up with at times. Identifying your creative place may be the strategy that helps you access your own creative ideas.

Money Saving Tip

saving moneyLeave your almost-empty containers of shampoo, conditioner and cream upside down to use the last drop. If you’re using up your conditioner before you’ve finished the shampoo, you may be falling prey to a marketing technique. Companies know we tend to use more of a thicker substance! Just use a little less. You may save buying a couple of bottles or more each year.

What made you smile today?

What made you proud of your money choices today?

Leaving Your Comfort Zone

11-sculpture gardenThe hero’s journey toward a goal starts with the questions:
Am I willing to go beyond who I currently recognize myself to be?
Am I willing to prepare to have what I want? Am I willing to ask for help?
Am I willing to live with confusion and paradox as I learn?
Maria Nemeth

Familiar routines and relationships are comfortable, predictable, dependable…and hard to give up whether you like them or not. Whenever you do something different, especially if it’s part of a growth experience, it not only changes you, it affects your other routines and the people you know. If you take courses, meet new people, undertake new activities, try a different way of eating, spend, save or give your money in a different way or make any other lifestyle changes, it may mean adapting or even sacrificing routines and relationships as they currently exist.

Frequently, we don’t even realize that we give up our dreams, put off our plans and sabotage ourselves because it’s easier than taking the risk of losing the familiar or trusting that we will be able to handle the challenges. Think about what success would look like to you. Visualize the new you and go for it! Stay open and trust that you will find the resources when you are faced with the challenges of establishing new routines or working through new aspects of long-term relationships. Leaving your comfort zone may be uncomfortable but has tremendous rewards!

Money Saving Tip

saving moneyKnow the interest rate you are paying on your credit cards. Generally, store cards have a higher interest rate than major credit cards. Plus, opening store accounts (to get the discount on that day’s purchase) can lower your credit score.
 

 
What made you smile today?

What made you proud of your money choices today?

Explore Your Options

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things
you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines.
Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
Mark Twain

Think back over your life. Are there things you wanted to do but didn’t? Maybe you thought it was too hard or would take too long. Maybe you were concerned that it would upset or disappoint someone else. Maybe you didn’t know what steps to take. Whatever the reason, with the wisdom of hindsight and the knowledge that comes from age and experience, do you now see options that would have allowed you to approach your situation differently? What can you learn from that reflection?

At any point in our lives, we can only do the best we can at the moment given the resources we have. Those resources include our emotional strength, self-confidence, knowledge, talents and education as well as the people who can support us. Look at your resources today. Are they different and better than, say, five or twenty years ago? Consider the ideas that excite you, bring you joy, create financial possibilities, broaden your horizons and can change your future. Decide to use today’s resources to live your life in a way that will make you proud when you look back twenty years from now!

Money Saving Tip

saving moneySupport your favorite charities by donating clothing, books, toys, furniture, canned goods, cars and boats. If you deduct expenses on your tax return, remember to get a receipt and save it for when you do your taxes. Keep track of your mileage and expenses when you volunteer. Those are also deductible expenses.

 

What made you smile today?

What made you proud of your money choices today?