Practicing Mindful Spending

Planning Your Future Forming Money Habits

Step 5 of 10 Steps to Financial Wellness

In this day and age, every impulse buy is just a swipe or tap away, making it more challenging than ever to rein in your spending. You may not be able to avoid spontaneous purchases completely (nor should you), but you can prevent an occasional indulgence from becoming a bad habit.

Woman meditatingFor step 5 of your financial wellness journey, here are a few ways to turn mindless into mindful when it comes to spending.

De-stress without ‘retail therapy’

Shopping to alleviate stress can ultimately have the opposite effect. Next thing you know, you’re racking up debt, which just adds to your worry. Consider other ways to decompress, such as:

  • Picking up a new hobby or book.
  • Decluttering your home.
  • Exercising to release the endorphins.

Changing habits takes time, so don’t give yourself a hard time if you don’t give up retail therapy cold turkey. 

Disable the one-click feature

The internet remembers everything, it seems, so all it takes is one click or tap to buy just about anything online. You can curb that temptation by deleting your payment information from your usual shopping sites. The extra time it takes to manually input your payment information may be just what it takes to realize maybe the purchase isn’t as necessary as you first thought.

Leave your wallet at home

If you’re out and about and aren’t planning to buy anything, leave your payment options behind.

If you make payments using your phone, maybe hide it so you can resist the temptation of impulsively buying something by conveniently tapping your phone at the register. Headed to a shop to pick up a specific item? See if you can complete the purchase online or over the phone, so all you have to do is grab and go.

Put large purchases on hold

Some large purchases are necessary, like a new hot water heater. But others fall in the “wants” camp rather than “needs.” Do you really need this new expensive item? Or do you just really want it? Consider holding off on buying anything that costs a certain amount (or more) until the item’s sale season rolls around. And by then, you may have decided that necessary big purchase wasn't so necessary after all.

Next up: Pay Yourself First

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