If you have a bad mindset towards money, saving or spending can be much like a fad diet.
And we ALL know how bad a fad diet is.
They are damaging both mentally and emotionally, they SUCK!
When it comes to crappy fad diets, we all know what happens..
Monday – You look in the mirror and say to yourself :”right, as of today, we are on a diet”.
You wake up with the aim to cut out carbs, to cut out sugar, to intermittent fast, to have two shakes per day, to ‘eat clean’… whatever it is. You start with determinations and will power.
Monday passes and you have nailed it.
Tuesday – Comes and goes, you feel so proud for turning down the stale donut in the kitchen at the office…
Wednesday – Dinner plans. You go with the intention of ordering a salad. But it all goes tits up when you see the new burger on the menu. You think “oh I will get it naked with no bun and a side salad” but before you know it, you are using a triple cooked chip as a vessel to transport a mound of mayonnaise into your mouth. Ooops.
The situation stands that is does not matter. You wanted the burger and chips. It is not a bad thing. It is all a part of having a healthy relationship with food and a balance in life.
But instead you feel like a failure, like you have ‘blown it’, like you have ‘fallen off the band wagon’ and make a promise to yourself that you will just start again on Monday.
Thursday to Sunday (the remaining 4 day of the week) – An absolute write-off. You binge on everything in sight, with the thought about how you will be not having ANY of this food as of Monday next week.
Repeat this process of restriction and binges and you will end up doing WAY more damage than good!
This is why DIETS DO NOT WORK. And before I go down the route of talking about how damaging diet culture is, let’s apply this logic to Money…
Time to take charge of your finances
Sunday – You watch all the videos on YouTube and read all the blogs and make yourself a budget plan for the month
Monday – You start strong with a no-spend day, yippee, feeling empowered!
Tuesday –You walk straight past Zara and say “nope not today, you have a full wardrobe” – a sense of accomplishment washes over you.
Wednesday – You have dinner plans. No problem because you worked this into your budget but you end up spending WAY more than you expected, (this could be because you wanted 3 courses and a bottle on wine, instead of just one course, OR maybe you just live in London because eating out can be expensive…)
Instead of isolating the situation and getting back on track the next day with your finances, planning to spend a little less over the next few days, you keep the negatvie mentally for the entire week.
Much like the trap of dieting, you think “ahhhhhh well the damage is done, I should just start again on Monday”.
But Monday is 4 days away and you end up spending way more than you even would have in the first place. It is a vicious cycle!
What to do if you overspend?
If you overspend, make it an isolated situation and tell yourself it is okay. Ask yourself a few questions:
- What did you overspend on?
- Was it something that could have been avoided with better planning?
- What can you learn from this situation?
- Was it money you needed to spend (like an unexpected bill) or were you swayed by something (an impulse buy)?
- Did you overspend because you set an unrealistic budget for the day? (e.g. telling yourself you would only spend £10 on dinner and would order only a starter, when in actual fact you knew you will always want to order a main course?)
- Did you overspend because you were being too restrictive?
If you overspend, do not beat yourself, just make a conscious effort to learn from your mistake