9 ways to practise money mindfulness

Mindfulness is all about presence and awareness. Some like to meditate or journal, for others mindfulness is more a state of being. The good news is, we can even reap the benefits of mindfulness when it comes to our money.

Being fully engaged with our financial behaviours, thoughts, feelings, goals and emotions helps to gradually build a healthy, positive relationship with money, and ultimately inform better financial outcomes.

Here are nine ways to build personal finances into your mindfulness routine.

 

1. Tune into your financial decision making

One of the most powerful and tangible ways to start practising money mindfulness is to train your brain to notice all those split second decisions we make without even realising.

You know the ones.

Slinging some skincare in your cart after a rough day at work. Popping out on a lunchtime walk and somehow spending $30 at the supermarket.

Learn to slow this process down and tune into what you’re thinking and feeling when you make money decisions. It can help unwind negative behaviour patterns or even stop them in their tracks.

2. Sit with your feelings around purchases

When you buy products, services or experiences, spend some time sitting with how you feel about that exchange.

What motivated you to spend that money? What were you trying to achieve?

Sometimes our purchases fulfil the need we set out to, but other times they don’t – and we can learn a lot from that shortfall.

 

3. Get curious when comparison creeps in

It’s common to compare your financial situation to people around you. After all, we all get a bit spiky when we see that person online who seems to just excel at everything. But this comparison can be really harmful to your wellbeing.

Notice the thoughts that come up when you compare yourself to others. Question what you believe about yourself and the other person.

Often you can untangle feelings of unworthiness or helplessness that have been holding you back.

 

4. Track your thoughts about money

Your thoughts create beliefs, and your beliefs inform behaviour. Keeping track of the thoughts you have about money for an entire day or an entire week can help you unlock deeply ingrained beliefs.

Trust me, it’s an eye opener.

Be honest with yourself. Take stock of those icky thoughts that show up throughout the day, and look for patterns that could be creating negative cycles of behaviour.

 

5. Do a mindful transaction review

Reviewing your transactions is great from a mathematical perspective, but it can be a mindful activity too.

Thinking carefully about the feelings and emotions surrounding each of your transactions can help you tune into the ways in which money is linked to your wellbeing.

If the same things are coming up over and over again – such as a disappointing food delivery every time your boss belittles you – you might find clues as to what’s holding you back.

 

6. Dive into your financial values

Your financial values are what motivates you to spend your money, but we don’t always spend in alignment with them.

Getting to know your financial values more clearly can help you make more informed spending decisions.

Start by looking at some of the best things you’ve ever spent money on, and break down what it is that makes these spends feel so good. Commonalities between your greatest purchases can point to what you really value. And it’s probably not that dress you ordered online during lockdown.

 

7. Journal your financial experiences

Journaling is a popular way of uncovering thoughts that are sitting in your subconscious mind.

Set a timer for ten minutes, and let out any money feelings that come to you. It might be jealousy, shame, anxiety, stress, resentment, frustration, or something else.

If you’re stuck, start by writing a letter to money as though it were a person. It feels silly, but let me tell you – it gets deep.

 

8. Become aware of fictional narratives around money

Our brain is always coming up with stories. It’s all an attempt to organise our experiences and create meaning around them.

But when it comes to money, this can be damaging.

We can create entire narratives around what money represents and how worthy we are of it, but learning to intercept these narratives and replace them with something more factual, neutral or even positive can help you break out of those patterns of thinking.

 

9. Have a ‘no spend day’ and observe your thoughts and feelings

A day of spending absolutely no money might sound like nothing (or it might sound like your idea of hell, depending on how spendy you are). Either way, it can teach you a lot.

While not spending any money for one day won’t make you wealthy in a numbers sense, it can help you uncover all the ways your brain is currently wired to spend money by default.

Noticing how unfamiliar it feels to resist the urge to spend money can be the eye opener you need to change your behaviour.

 

article from: au.finance.yahoo.com