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Easy Minimalist Habits to Start Saving Money




Living mindfully has helped me become more intentional in all areas of my life, including my finances.

The more attuned I became to where I was spending my money I noticed that I was less likely to impulse buy and overconsume. I become more focused on my long-term money goals.


Being mindful of where I spend the income that flows into my life, I have become a mindful consumer.

By getting more financially organized I was able to stick to my financial goals.

1. Pay Yourself First

When money flows into my life I pay myself before I pay anybody else. I put a percentage of my income into savings and a percentage into investments. Paying myself ensures I always have plenty of money for an emergency and enough money for my future retirement goals. By making saving an automatic habit it’s incredible how quickly my money started to grow. Even saving a small amount, like 5% or 10 % adds up. But mostly, it has trained me to be consistent with saving.

2. Prioritize

Prioritizing where my money needs to go. I make sure I put my needs at the top of the priority list, like shelter, lights, food, and transportation. Nonessential items come after my priorities are met.

Dedicating money to the essentials first puts me in control of my money and makes me feel as if I have an abundance of money.

3. Attach Emotions to Goals

Emotions are a very powerful influence on my decisions.

It is easier for me to stick to my financial goals when I create an emotional attachment to them. If I’m shopping and see a new dress I want, I think of how cute I’ll look in it. I envision all the places I could wear the dress. How great my husband will think I look in the new dress. I create an emotional attachment to the dress which makes it hard to resist buying it.

Financial goals work the same for me. I list my goal at the top of the page and list all of the benefits I will gain from saving my money toward that goal. I think about not being stressed out when bills show up. I picture how wonderful retiring early will be. I think of how secure my life will be and the freedom financial security will bring me.

4. Tell Your Money Where to Go

My husband and I do a budget every month. We tell our money where to go and how best to work for us. We use a budgeting app that is free called Mint, but a simple notebook will do the trick. We give every dollar a home.

Budgeting makes us feel in control of our money and finances.

When we began budgeting over 15 years ago, it was intimidating and overwhelming. We honestly had no idea where our money went, it was just gone before the month was over. With consistent practice, it became easier and easier.

My husband and I used to always argue about money before we began budgeting. Because we were not on the same page. We were both just spending money on whatever we wanted. Creating a plan for our finances helped us work together toward our financial goals for retirement and plan what was important to us like visiting our grown children



5. Use Everything

Use up everything! Let nothing go to waste. I grew up the youngest of six children in rural Utah. I learned not to be wasteful. I wore hand-me-down clothes, and I took very good care of all of my possessions, so they could last as long as possible. Being careful not to be wasteful was ingrained in my everyday behavior.

As an adult, I practice that behavior in my everyday choices.

I buy used furniture from thrift stores or yard sales and repurpose it with fresh paint and new hardware.

I have repurposed family antiques like my grandfather's water picture into a flower pot. It’s beautiful, and unique and reminds me of the farm in Utah.

Examples:

Buy quality shoes, and clothes with class looks that will last several years.

Mend things that break if possible.

Make large batch menu items to get two meals out of one.

Refurbish old furniture to bring a modern look.

Eat leftovers from yesterday's meals.


6. Mindful Consumer

Overconsumption is fed by purchasing things I don’t need or plan to buy.

I overspend when I’m not practicing being a mindful consumer. By determining what I need and my financial priorities every month in my budget, I’m far less likely to overconsume.

I make mindful purchases based on where I’ve told my money where to go. I feel good about my purchases because I’m sticking to my plan.

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