It’s true, money is energy. Where you put it says everything about what you value, who you are and even your spiritual outlook. Do you spend it the minute it hits your account or do you squirrel it away for a rainy day?
When someone says they’ll pick up the check do you smile and say thanks or do you feel undermined? Do you pay your bills when they are due, a little early or a little late? Are you shocked when your credit card is denied or have you cut those up long ago?
The way you do one thing is the way you do everything and one great area to learn about yourself is your spending habits – especially if you are facing a drop in income or change in expenses. By seeing who you are through your spending, you know what areas will be easy to cut back on and what areas are going to be nearly impossible.
Remember, knowledge is power! So here are some common spending patterns and what they say about you. Not all of it’s pretty, but if you are looking to make some changes to your finances, you may find a need to make some changes with yourself first.
When do you pay your bills?
Early – You might be just a little high strung. You have feelings of insecurity around authority figures and bureaucracy. You may have trust issues in your relationships. People are just so unpredictable! Good thing you know how much is in each of your accounts – to the penny.
On time – You like to keep things organized and you take pride in doing things just right. You take responsibility for your own actions and keep calendars. You’re great at remembering birthdays too!
Late – You cut yourself some slack now and then. If there’s no consequence, what’s the big deal? You’re a “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” kinda person. You like to wear life a little loose around the collar.
Really late – You find society’s requirements illogical and overwhelming. It’s hard to know what day of the week it is let alone keep the lights on! You like to do things on your timetable and all your friends and family accommodate you, because what choice do they have?
Change your behavior…
Start by looking at your relationship to authority. Bills are about being a member – not a star – in society. Everyone has to pay them. A touch of humility and organization can move you into an “on time” bill payer. And if keeping the collectors away isn’t a motivation, then maybe your credit score is.
Punctuality with your bills accounts for 35 percent of your credit score. If you are a really early bill payer, practice trust and pay online three days before it’s due. Just think of all the interest you can earn by keeping it in savings until you need it. And if you are super late, make a gradual change. It’s going to be hard to reign in your maverick ways in one billing cycle. So just start by writing down the due dates on your calendar so that you have awareness of just how late you are. Get a little closer each month and give yourself a splurge when you hit the mark!
How do you save?
Live small, save big – You feel good when you deny yourself the finer things in life. You never know when a rainy day can stretch for years. So better keep it all in a bank. Better yet, use many different banks, just in case hackers crack the FDIC code.
Spend some, save some – you believe in pie charts. You’ve got different savings accounts for different things and when you reach a goal you take that vacation because you earned it. Some people might think you’re a little cold because you don’t understand starving artists or people on welfare. Good finances are about good planning – period.
I don’t need savings. I have a credit card! – You like impulsivity and you don’t like being told what to do. You tend to fall into relationships that have an element of fantasy and you don’t like math. You get a thrill out of buying lottery tickets. Because, hey, they’re a good investment!
To find your savings zen, pay yourself first then pay your future self!
Saving money is about our relationship with time. A desire not to plan for the future is a veiling of a desire not to have a future. On the other side, saving everything just for the sake of saving is a bid to control the uncontrollable. No amount of money can buy good health or protect your loved ones from tragedy. So, spend a little now and put some away because you’re gonna love yourself tomorrow. And if you are already in that zen place, be compassionate to those who are still learning to spend and save. It’s not just about money, it’s about self-love and being vulnerable. If it were just about money, we’d all have it easy.
Balance: money and life
Money doesn’t buy happiness, but knowing your expenses, meeting your obligations and paying down debt is a real self-esteem booster! Financial responsibility is the mark of an adult. This isn’t to say that unemployment in unavoidable, or investments never turn downward. But if you’ve lived a balanced financial life, kept up on your bills and put away for a rainy day, you have a lot longer to wait out dips in earning than those many, many people who live paycheck to paycheck. People use their credit card for life’s emergencies because they have no money in savings. And now many are finding they can’t earn enough to pay their bills because they have more debt than income. Once the snowball gets rolling, it doesn’t take much to be in an avalanche. But there is always hope to turn it around.
The universe likes to keep things flowing. So earn money, invest it, save it, spend it. See your spending plan as a circle of power that brings you food, shelter and the occasional cruise. Get into a slipstream of faith and you will find that money will come to you from unexpected places – just like spiritual strength. Live abundantly with your heart first, and when the money comes, say thank you by living within your means and trusting that more is on the way.
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