Finding Tiny Glimmers of Good Stuff in Challenging Times
Embracing Gentle Financial Changes.
People sense life, money, business -[insert one or all or maybe none] are challenging at the moment. It’s super easy to feel overwhelmed by negativity and uncertainty.
The financial landscape might seem different from the past few years, and lifestyle creep can sneak up on us without warning—hands up who recognises the lifestyle creep – guilty as charged over here.
It’s important to keep our heads up amidst struggles and search for those tiny glimmers of good stuff. By acknowledging the changes, being honest with ourselves, and making gentle financial adjustments, we can navigate the uncertain waters and create a brighter future.
1. Embrace Gratitude for the Good Stuff
When times are tough, it’s natural to dwell on the negatives and overlook the positive aspects of our lives. I’m a HUGE FAN of cultivating an attitude of gratitude. It can be a game-changer. Take a moment each day to reflect on the good things in your life. No matter how small they may seem. It could be the support of loved ones, good health, or even a small act of kindness from a stranger. Gratitude helps shift our focus from lack to abundance and strengthens our resilience in difficult times.
Similarly, in finances, count where you have money flowing to you – count every penny. You may still have a steady income, a comfortable home, a job you enjoy, a retainer client, and financial support from outside your home. Celebrate these financial flows (even if it’s not quite or nearly enough), and let them inspire you to overcome the challenges ahead. We are helping you see where money flows to you so you can see what you do have, not only what you don’t have. When we only focus on the shortfall, it can be challenging to figure out how to make it up and get out of our negative thoughts and feelings.
2. Don’t Succumb to Fear
The media can be a double-edged sword. While it keeps us informed, it can also propagate fear and doom-laden financial narratives. Remember that media outlets often prioritise sensationalism to attract viewers. Instead of letting the negative headlines consume you, remain informed and seek positive news and inspiring stories of people overcoming financial challenges. Those stories are out there. I have clients reporting record revenues and profits month by month. I’m hearing about people being rewarded bonuses, get pay raises – the good news is out there.
Financial experts and economists can provide valuable insights but are not infallible. Avoid getting trapped in a cycle of pessimism, and focus on your individual circumstances. Each financial journey is unique, and overarching trends do not necessarily dictate your success.
3. Acknowledge Lifestyle Creep
Lifestyle creep refers to the gradual increase in spending as our income rises, leading to a higher cost of living without much improvement in overall happiness. In times of financial uncertainty, it’s essential, to be honest with ourselves about our spending habits and identify areas where we can cut back.
Start by tracking your expenses and creating a budget. Analyse your spending patterns to see if there are any non-essential items or services that you can temporarily live without. This exercise helps you manage your finances better and makes you more mindful of your spending habits in the long run.
4. Make Gentle Financial Changes
Cutting back on expenses doesn’t have to be drastic or painful. Instead, make gradual adjustments that align with your values and long-term goals. Here are three ways to adopt financial cutbacks to manage higher rent or mortgage payments-
Review Subscriptions and Memberships
I found two subscriptions I never use this week, totalling £340 per year. Knowing I’ve taken control and put that money back into my pocket and home feels good. Take an inventory of all your subscriptions and memberships. Evaluate which ones truly add value to your life and consider pausing the ones that don’t align with your priorities. Remember, this isn’t about deprivation but ensuring that your spending aligns with your current needs and desires.
Optimise Energy Usage
Utility bills can be significant expenses, and optimising your energy usage can save money without compromising comfort. I am now the queen of turning off lights when not in use. I was frivolous and kept lamps on timers in rooms we don’t even go in regularly – what a wasted luxury. I’ve unplugged electronic devices and adjusted the thermostat; it’s made a noticeable difference in monthly bills.
Cook at Home and Reduce Dining Out
If you follow me on the old insta, you know I’m a massive fan of cooking from scratch. It’s two things for me – I know it’s better for my health and pocket. Eating out frequently can take a toll on your finances. Embrace home-cooked meals and reduce dining out to special occasions. Cooking at home saves money and allows you to explore your culinary skills and enjoy healthier meals. Here’s a link to my 10 Days To Health and Happiness to get you started.
When the mass media plays out the negative narrative of financial uncertainty, it’s easy to fall into despair and believe we are financially doomed. By keeping our heads up, focusing on the tiny glimmers of good stuff, and taking action on the things in our control, we can maintain a balanced outlook and stay resilient.
Lifestyle creep is a silent enemy that can erode our financial stability, but we can create a more secure future by being honest with ourselves and making gentle economic changes.
Remember, the econony might have slowed down, but it’s not stagnant. By avoiding the negative media hype and staying informed yet optimistic, we can navigate these challenging times and emerge stronger on the other side. Embrace gratitude, remain flexible, and make mindful financial decisions to weather the storm and embrace a brighter financial future.