20 personal money practices that got me to a place of grooving prosperity. (part 1)
More than most subjects and matters of life, we tend to leave money wisdom to the experts. Fitness — we get that we need to do what works for us as individuals. Sex — you know that you’re the mistress or mister of your own domain. But money — few of us, would proclaim that we’re money experts. But just like your body and your heart, if you’ve created a relationship to money that works for you in some way — then that makes you your own money expert. You don’t need to know a thing about stock trading or how to read a profit n’ loss statement to be Chief Operating Officer of The Bank of You.
We don’t talk about money like we talk about diet tips or how to get the best bikini wax. We should. The more we talk about money amongst ourselves as friends, the more power we have. We demystify expertise, we expose fallacies and schemes, we neutralize emotional charge, we redefine success, and we help each other prosper.
Talk to your friends about money this week.
20 personal money perspectives & practices that took me most of my adult life to clarify and got me to a place of grooving prosperity
PART 1. (PART 2 will cover BUSINESS-specific money learnings.)
My money philosophy summed up:
Be very attentive. Don’t cling. Practice generosity. Go for pleasure – now (which leans toward instant gratification, not delaying.)
1. Talk about money. I have a kind of fiendish curiosity about how people create their financial freedom…or misery. “How much did you pay for that?” “What do you mean by ‘a lot’ of money?” “How much is enough?” “Where do you shop?” “Whatchya gonna do with all that money?” “What did you spend all that on anyway?” From food stamps to gold bullion under the mattress, I’m fascinated by how currency runs through our lives. So I just ask.
2. Make money a CENTRAL priority. This has nothing to do with greed and consumption, and everything to do with life force and power. In their right place, priorities do not consume, they enhance. This isn’t about fixating on money or hinging your self-worth on your hedge fund. IT’S ABOUT FOCUSING ON CREATING FREEDOM.
3. When you get it, don’t spend it right away. Wait to cash your cheque. Hold on to the savings as long as you can. It sends a message to your psyche that you always have enough, that there is no need to be desperate, and that you have something to look forward to. Restraint makes for good foreplay which makes for good…release.
4. Online banking gives me control and ease. I do everything on line. Everything.
5. I pay my bills as soon as they arrive and I say thank you to every bill, even the whopping dental expenses just had, “I’m so glad I have the means to take care of this.”
6. I rarely think of money as lost or wasted – a less than stellar meal, a broken gadget that didn’t last long, bad business debt…it’s all feeding someone somewhere, the money will come back again, and complaining keeps you stuck.
7. Ask for exceptions. Can you waive the fee? How about that rain check deal? Call your credit card company today and ask them for a better interest rate so that they can keep your business. You’d be surprised how easy it is.
8. I never, ever say I can’t afford it. Rather, “Buying a yacht is just not what I want to do with my money, darling.” Focus on priorities, not limitations. And I never say to my kid that we can’t afford things. I tell him we’re rich in love and life, and we can afford to be generous. When he wants to buy crappy overpriced plastic toys, I say, “That’s not the best use of our good money, we’ll find something that’s better for you and the planet.” He gets it, (that said, he has enough Legos to build a large condo.)
9. Pay someone to do it. This flies in the face of some theories: “Why work an extra week at your job to afford to hire someone to paint your living room? Work less and paint the living room yourself.” Um, no thanks. My theory is this: earn your money doing something you’re passionate about, and pay people to do what you’re not passionate about but needs to be done for you to fulfill your mission. D-I-Y is like, not part of my driving strategy.
10. Save receipts. I take shit back and I complain about poor service (very politely, of course…most of the time.) Hollah with your dollahs.
11. I give my money accounts sappy, positive-affirmation titles. My bank statement reads like so: BOOMING LIFE + BUSINESS; BUSINESS TAX PAID (I see it as done!); HOME PAID FOR; ADVENTURE + CARE (from trips to acupuncture.)
12. I hold out. I waited seven weeks for my Aeron chair because I wanted grey instead of black. I sat on the floor in my living room for three months because I wanted a couch that was three inches lower than the in-store model. I went four months without any creative-type support because I hadn’t found a winner yet.
13. I’m setting my kid up for the future. Investing for him gives me very deep peace. Everyone deserves a leg up.
14. I’m upfront about shopping for a deal with sales people. I’ll tell Dealer A that I’m going to Dealer B to compare. This ain’t a date, this is a numbers game.
15. I avoid big box stores and dollar stores. I buy organic and shop more often for food. I’m more meal focused than “cupboard” focused. More nourishment less spending.
16. I pay for my music. It’s clean. It supports art.
17. I buy my friend’s stuff. If we’re good pals and you write a book or knit a sweater, sign me up for two. Love is really basic sometimes.
18. I get stuff repaired, even when it might be just as much to buy new (especially with electronics) my goal is to keep stuff out of landfills.
19. “Never a borrower or a lender be.” I always thought Shakespeare was incredibly prudish because of this. I lend, but, I prefer to just give. “It’s a gift.” Done.
20. I pay for convenience and speed. I consider my time so precious that I think, “If I do valet parking for the event tonight, I get an extra fifteen minutes to be with my kid or write.” That’s worth fifteen bucks, and so is staying out of the rain when I’m in suede boots. And besides, DVDs mailed to the door and express services make me feel all luxy and taken care of. And when you can create instant gratification, you’ve got the energy to create more to be grateful for.
For Part 2 of 2, go here: 17 money practices for business that cost me a lot to learn