The number one thing I am most proud of in 2018 was I got rid of my “lack” mentality.
Going into last year I was so riddled with money stress that I woke up every day with a pit in my stomach. I felt like there was never enough. I would get to the front of the line at the grocery store and feel sick. I would be so scared to spend the money in my bank account that I would only use my Visa until I was declined because I had gone so far over my limit. I would curse how much healthy food was. There was more than once that I opted for the less than healthy option because I just could not justify spending that one dollar more.
I felt sick all the time.
I hated money. I judged it for it not being there for me. I felt like it had abandoned me because it just never seemed to be there when I needed it.
I thought I had to work more. I thought I was lazy because I couldn’t do the things others were doing. I hid behind the “broke student” facade and then once I was no longer a student I broke down.
I spent the whole summer working through my issues with money.
The first thing I did was forgave it. I forgave money for seemingly not being there for me. I forgave it and stopped thinking about all the times I thought it had wronged me.
Then I started being grateful for money. I said thank you every time I paid a bill. I said thank you when I paid for my groceries. I said thank you when I had some extra dollars to spend on coffee. And as I continued this practice something amazing happened .. I no longer dreaded paying bills. I no longer lived from pay cheque to pay cheque. The sickness I felt when I was the grocery store went away.
Another thing I began to do was budget. I would write out all of my expenses for the month and the related charges. I would then enter in the money I actually spent on everything as it happened. I also documented how much money I made throughout the month.
As I continued to do this my monthly income increased steadily.
I also began to keep cash in my wallet. As a tutor I do get paid in cash from some students so it is easy for me to accumulate it. I would only use the money in my bank account until I absolutely had to use the cash in my wallet, and even then I never touched at least $20 from it. This cash is my safety net, it shows me that money is abundant and will always be there.
Finally, I only every bought what I could afford. If I had to get money from my boyfriend or my parents that month then I did, but I never, ever touched my credit card. I did not even use it to buy Christmas presents. We had a specific budget and we stuck to it.
Shifting my money mindset was a big project that took the entire year, but it was totally worth it. I do not wake up feeling heavy and bogged down anymore. I feel free and like I can enjoy my life.
If you are currently feeling any of the things I felt last year, I encourage you to implement some of my tactics from above.
I have two tips for anyone who is looking to start their own money mindset shift:
1) be aware
2) be grateful