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  • Writer's pictureJosie Coco

Understand money!

Day 302/366 days Towards Self-Mastery.

It's not a frivolous thing to do little tricks to shift your mindset out of poverty mode into abundance mode.

If it's money you are most worried about, and who isn't, then one trick that I have found is to keep extra money in my wallet just to remind me that I am not destitute. It's money I never spend. It's reassuring me when I can't buy that dress or that having a meal out will stretch me just a little too far on a student budget.

However the most important thing about money is managing your lifestyle. Living within your means is not just a nice idea, it's a necessity.

Well, I say it's a necessity if you've considered the life you want to live, and it includes actually LIVING!

Going to work to fund a lifestyle that you can't afford, or even being in a business to fund a lifestyle that is way beyond your means is a trap you could call self-imposed slavery. Yes you have to pay the bills, yet the number of bills you have to pay is entirely up to you.

If you subscribe to every online entertainment site that excites you, you'll have a lot of extra bills that you probably are not really getting the most out of, that are not adding real value to your life, and that are keeping you on the treadmill.

The formula for an abundant life of money wealth has been known since Babylonian days. Not to mention that there is a mountain of advice out there easily accessible on the internet.

However the key for you and me is that we are not brainwashed into being confused about needs and wants. Additionally it's important that we don't accrue debt for those things that we don't particularly need. This brainwashing is certainly around the sort of lifestyle we need to maintain to keep up with whomever we compare ourselves with.

We have an innate desire to belong. Almost all marketing is about touching this pain point. You'll belong when... That desire drives us to show that we are keeping up with the norms of our group, our culture, our society and most often, those norms don't exactly support us.

A norm might be a white picket fence, two car garage with a certain quality of car, and a nice home in the suburbs. Or maybe it's a luxury apartment in a nice location with a great view. What you might be able to afford is a tiny home on a tiny site that fits your budget.

I discovered that the tiny home gave me freedom and a year off work at a time when my friends thought I was nuts to make the move from a 5 bedroom, 5 bathroom catastrophe to a debt free 86 sq. meter home. That was 25 years ago, and I have regretted that decision for NOT ONE DAY.

It doesn't matter where you pitch your comparisons. A stock standard Toyota is going to have you at the bottom of the heap of a group of friends driving Toyota GR Supra GTS, just the same as a stock standard Ferrari is going to have you at the bottom of the pile of friends who drive a 2020 Ferrari 812.

My first car ever was brand new, then I realised the insanity of buying brand new when a 2nd hand car would do the exact same job at a significantly lower price.

There's freedom in stepping outside the norms, assessing your lifestyle, and acting accordingly.

For the last 25 years I have lived debt free, with the freedom to do exactly as I choose. To travel, to work, to rest, to study, whenever I choose. I do own my own home which is a security that underpins my sense of safety and security in the world. If I didn't own my own home, I would have figured out a way to co-own a home with friends by now.

The key to understanding and achieving financial freedom is to understand how money works. Instead of sinking yourself in debt, or spending all your hard earned cash on useless rubbish, learn about money. Learn about how it works and how it can work for you. Then apply that learning to get as much freedom as you want.

Get off the treadmill of lining other people's pockets. Make contact with your need for belonging and understand what the cost is to you. Find another group to belong to, like a group of friends that value their freedom over looking great, and together encourage each other to make the decisions that lighten the load for all of you.

Take a good, long look at the marketing machines that you expose yourself to on social media, and anywhere else, and remove yourself from the influence of glamorous products, ideas and concepts that you can't afford.

Choose the life you want to live instead of being lead into a lifestyle that you will be forever trying to fund, and ultimately don't want. I'm hoping you do this while you are young enough and still have life to live and enjoy.


Simple Abundance

366 days Towards Self-Mastery

When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)

I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.

As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.

My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?

I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.

Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.

This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.


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