A New Perspective on Money

Since my last post I have been doing some soul searching, working on my resume and looking forward (read:attempting to plan) the future. Not much has happened or progressed, but the job search is in full swing now.

I have a confession; I have been struggling with money this month. I started the month really strong, little to no spending for the first week and a half, then stress got the better of me and it all went to sh*t. And then I gave up, or should I say gave in? To my wants.

With that, I’m changing my focus:.

Instead of not spending money I am going to focus on saving money.

Instead of spending money I am going to focus on investing money.

After doing an analysis on my spending for the past 6 months, it has become obvious to me that I do not have control over my spending and my current tactics are not working.

In my next post I will show you an easy way to do a trend analysis for yourself and what you can learn from it in terms of your habits.

Doing the Latte Factor challenge has made me more aware of the impact of bringing lunch to work and what difference my coffee consumption has made for my budget and what role those two things have in regards to my habits. Getting a handle on those easy day to day vices has definitely helped my budget.
Going forward, I need to take a different approach to my money. As very smart people say, “To change something, you first must change your mindset”.  Wealth isn’t the money you spend, it’s the money you accumulate. THIS needs to stick in my brain. Having things without a purpose isn’t going to make me happier and definitely isn’t going to make me richer.

How has your money adventure been going this month? Are you on track? Are you doing as well as you thought you’d be doing this year?

-R.

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7 thoughts on “A New Perspective on Money

  1. Great post. Certainly one approach instead of budgeting and then trying to control spending would be to take each paycheck, put a set amount into savings/investments, a set amount into retirement, a set amount into healthcare/car/home repair savings, buy your groceries, and write checks for your existing bills and things like rent/mortgage and utilities, then just get the rest in cash and not worry about spending it because you’ve got the necessities covered. Essentially what you have done is created a budget where you have put money away and paid for the necessities, then put the rest into a blow money category. You have all of the important things covered.

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    1. Thanks for the comment! I feel like guilt is something I associate with spending money. Thank you for the advice to just budget everything first then just spend what I have left. I need to work on living on last month’s pay cheque, so accumulating money and not using the current paycheck to cover the money I have already spent. I think this is the area where I run into trouble. I’m still working backwards- if that makes sense.

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      1. The trouble is, that’s (living on last month’s paycheck) is a difficult transition to make because bills come in the month after the service is used, so most people end up paying for things they bought last month using money they receive this month. Of course, the money was earned last month and your employer then pays you this month, so really things work out where you’re paying for things you got last month using money you earned last month. The only exception is your rent where you pay in advance. Really though, if you pay cash for all of the variable purchases, like things you buy at the store beyond necessities, and you use cash that is left over from your current paycheck after you pay for all of the necessities, including investments, you shouldn’t get into trouble since next month’s paycheck should cover the necessities that you use this month.

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  2. I was totally shocked when I added up the amount I was spending on daily (fancy!) coffees and bought lunches. It’s amazing how this seemingly little stuff can really add up. I decided to only buy coffee on Fridays and only buy lunch when I was going out with other people and the cost was worth the experience (I often found I would just eat $10 lunch while working at my desk). This helped tremendously! I definitely fell off the wagon a few times but just making the change and being committed to making it work made a huge difference.

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  3. Best of luck at starting the journey into investing. I found that dividend income investing worked best for my situation, which is pretty similar to yours in a way. Check out http://www.seekingalpha.com for some really solid articles. The thought of making thousands of dollars a year off of just dividends is pretty motivating!

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