Today’s mantra: I will absolutely make time for the things that matter most.
Today’s action: Examine the underlying reason for any knee-jerk excuses you’re experiencing as part of this challenge.
When I have a knee-jerk negative reaction to something it’s a signal to me that I need to step back and see what’s going on inside my head. This is something I practiced a lot when I was dating my husband. I never really put much thought into my reactions or the motive behind them, until I started dating him. See, he was my first real boyfriend, and it was important to me that I communicate well with him, so suddenly I needed to understand what was going on inside this head of mine.
Luckily, he was very patient with me as I worked through this process. And I learned an important skill- when I have a knee-jerk reaction, take a step back and see where it’s coming from and why I’m reacting that way. I still need to work on having that reaction when I see something I want to buy.
I remember one of my college roommates learning in a class that before you buy anything you should HALT and not spend money if you’re Hungry Angry Lonely or Tired. I think that pretty much sums up my excuses for spending money, though I might add that I also spend money when I’m feeling excited, so maybe I need to add an exclamation on the end of my HALT to make it HALT!
How many times have you been grocery shopping and then are too tired to cook any of the food you bought when you get home? Or you’re so tired after work and you were such a good responsible adult today, that you think you deserve a treat? I’ve definitely been there. The key for me is to find non-money related ways to solve these problems.
If you’ve got a stock of leftovers in the freezer like we’ve talked about in some earlier posts, being too tired to cook is the perfect reason to bust them out! My other solution is one I’m not very good at following- keep a snack in your purse or your glove compartment, then when you’re tired and hungry, you can at least help the hungry problem, which usually helps the tired problem a little too.
As for treating yourself, I like to find free or cheap ways to treat myself. Things like taking time to sit down and read a book or getting a foot massage from my husband. My current favorite is making myself a chocolate berry shake- yum! It’s a tasty, sweet treat and it’s healthy!
The point is, you just need to think outside the box a little and get creative. Figure out what you’re actually wanting, what’s your desired outcome? And exercise a little willpower, enough to take a step back and make the best decision that doesn’t cost any money.
What excuses do you fall back on to justify spending money? Have you found any good solutions to help keep yourself in check?