The Saving Game: How To Trick Yourself Into Saving More Money

Ride With Me BabySo I’m in a situation that probably sounds all too familiar. I’ve just returned from an amazing trip overseas and my bank account is hurting – bad.

There are just so many amazing things to see and do (and eat) and it’s so easy to get more than a little carried away. If you’ve ever travelled anywhere, ever, I’m pretty sure you know what I’m talking about.

I made a big effort to save before I left but, to be completely honest with you, I still ended up dipping into some of my other saving accounts (including the one for emergencies, which isn’t easy for me to admit – I’m not perfect). And it’s left me in a situation where I need to seriously rehab my finances.

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5 Ways To Set Yourself Up For A Productive Day, Every Day

blueberries

You may remember I’ve been having a bit of a struggle with motivation. And while I can’t say the struggle is completely over (and I fear it never will be), I have been making some headway.

I started looking at the things I do every day and, more particularly, every morning to see whether there was something I could change.

I wanted to figure out why some days so productive while others are just blah, and whether there was anything I could do about it.

This is what I discovered:

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What I’m Reading This Month – July

Florence 2014

So maybe you noticed that I didn’t do one of these posts in June and really, that’s because I didn’t read anything. 

June is not my favourite month of the year. For me it means exams, stress and winter so any kind of ‘extra’ reading is definitely off the cards.

But now it’s July and July is different.

I’m in Europe (currently in my friend’s apartment in Paris) and I can pretty well do whatever I like with my time. There’s nowhere I ‘have’ to be and I’m going  to have a lot of time on planes and trains for reading.

So I was pretty happy when I got to Brisbane Airport and saw a book that I’d really wanted to read but had completely forgotten it existed until I saw it (I have no idea why my brain does this to me haha)

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My Struggle With Motivation

Self Portrait in Spain

I want to tell you the reason I haven’t posted anything on the blog for the last two weeks is because I’ve been ‘too busy’.

The whole ‘I’ve just been so busy’ excuse is just way too easy to use. I say it to myself and others all the time even though I know it’s not the real reason I’m not getting anything done (I haven’t been too busy to watch a whole season of Pretty Little Liars…)

The real reason I haven’t posted anything on the blog recently is motivation. I’ve been seriously lacking it. 

It’s definitely not in an ‘I don’t care’ way. I still definitely care a lot.

I’ve just felt like I have no energy.

It’s this highly unproductive slump that I find myself in every 3 or 4 months that is really hard to pull myself of (and yes, it does always happen after the end of uni exams).

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Money: What’s Your Story?

Untitled

I’m no expert, but I’m pretty sure bad spending habits have nothing to do with money and everything to do with the way we feel.

I know I already kinda talked about this a couple of weeks ago (you can read the post here) but I want to dig a little deeper.

Not everyone who struggles to save has low self-esteem, but everyone who struggles to save is having that problem because of the way they feel about money.

This is why we can’t stick to the strict budgets we impose on ourselves for more than 4 days. This is why we can live in the age of information, with 50 million articles on the net called ’10 easy ways to save more money’, and we’re still struggling.

None of these things deal with the way we feel.

If you actually want to save money start paying attention to the stories you tell yourself. 

In the words of Seth Godin:

We tell ourselves a story about how we got that money, what it says about us, what we’re going to do with it and how other people judge us. We tell ourselves a story about how that might grow, and more vividly, how that money might disappear or shrink or be taken away.

And those stories, those very powerful unstated stories, impact the narrative of just about everything else we do.

So yes, there’s money. But before there’s money, there’s a story. It turns out that once you change the story, the money changes too.

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Are You A Consumer Or A Creator?

PhotographyThis is the question that made me realise I wasn’t creating anything, even though I desperately wanted to.

This is the question that made me start this blog.

Anyone can be a creator, including you. The only hurdle is choosing yourself. 

It took me years of consuming blogs and years of thinking ‘I could do that too’ to finally give myself permission to do it – it’s so much easier on the ego not to try.

Whether you’re an artist, writer, photographer, musician, film-maker, stylist or blogger, you have to confront the knowledge that people are judging you. You have to confront the fear that your friends and family will tell you you’re not ’good enough’.

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How To Get Back Into A Habit

I Love StrawberrySo I’m guessing it’s not news to you that the habit fairy isn’t going to come and wave her magic wand just because you’ve been doing something for 21 days.

It’s actually hard to get into a good habit and it usually takes me a good three or four (or five or six) attempts to finally get there.

One of the hardest things about habits isn’t actually sticking to them. That’s easy enough once you figure out the way to approach it that’s actually going to work for you (and not the person you wish you were).

The hardest part is giving them another shot when it didn’t work out the first, second or twenty-second time you tried them. 

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