You’ve probably heard of mindfulness but have you heard of money mindfulness? It might sound strange but it’s real and there are plenty of people who implement techniques in their daily life to improve their mindset towards money.
What is money mindfulness?
Let’s start off by breaking it down and understanding what we mean when we say ‘money mindfulness’. Put simply, it means that you give your full attention to your finances and are aware of your thoughts and emotions towards money.
Why is money mindfulness important?
You might think that you already have a good hold on your finances and don’t really need to worry about this so-called money mindfulness. What many don’t realise, though, is that when you truly analyse your relationship with money, you’ll start to notice that you may be causing yourself more stress than necessary. Becoming mindful of your thoughts and feelings towards money can ensure you develop a healthy relationship with your finances and can actually mean you end up in a better financial position.
Where do I start?
To begin your journey towards money mindfulness, you firstly have to understand your attitude towards money. What do you feel when you view your bank account? Do you only check your bank account after you’ve paid bills or received your pay check? These questions are important as they will help you to breakdown the feelings you associate with money. If you only check your bank account after you’ve paid bills, chances are you’re quite stressed and anxious about how much money is leaving your account versus how much is coming in. Start to become aware of your emotional state every time you view your bank balance and that will help you to discern the type of relationship you have with money.
It’s also a good idea to reflect on the attitude your parents and other family members had towards money when you were growing up. If your family faced financial hardship when you were a child, chances are you often saw your parents become very stressed about anything that involved money. Those feelings can become an underlying part of your own attitude towards money and may explain the relationship you have with money as an adult.
Once you understand the emotions you associate with money, you can start developing techniques to become more mindful of how you feel about money.
A great way to start is by thinking carefully about what you want your financial future to look like. Write these thoughts down so they’re not just a vision but can become a solid plan. Once you know where you want your finances to end up, you can start developing goals to execute your plan.
With your plan in mind, you can start taking small steps to change your feelings about money. Instead of only checking your bank account when you know money is coming out for bills, try checking it at random points each day. This will start to change your mindset towards your finances. Where you once logged in with dread, knowing lots of money has just left your account to pay bills, you’ll now feel surprised by the numbers you see – all because you’re no longer expecting it!
Are you ready for a challenge? Try going a full day without spending any money – with the exception of bills and groceries. It might seem tricky at first, but if you start doing this more frequently, you’ll begin to notice your spending habits and how some of those habits aren’t necessary. Once you develop a better idea of how you spend money, this can contribute to improving your overall relationship with money.
So, now we’ve broken down the practice of money mindfulness and shown you just how simple it can be, give it a go for yourself.
General Advice Warning: This information is intended to be general in nature and is not personal financial advice. It does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on any information in this article, you should consider the appropriateness of the information provided. In particular, you should seek independent financial advice.