5 Ways Practicing Gratitude can Save You Money
Thanksgiving is almost here!! Sorry, I'm a sucker for holidays, especially Thanksgiving, because it centers around one of the most valuable practices that I cherish; gratitude. Oh yeah, plus the FOOD! With the proliferation of all these "Insta-celebrities" and blogs galore, you can't make a pumpkin pie anymore and be done. Ohhh no. If you post that, or even take a picture of it, you'll be labeled as *gasp* basic! No you have to make an autumn spice creme brulee with glazed pecan reduction and nutmeg chiffon whatever. Remember the days where you were a treated like royalty if you baked a box-recipe brownie and brought it over? Ah, I digress. Here are 5 ways if you tune out the noise and start practicing gratitude, it will save you money not only around Thanksgiving, but to infinity and beyond! (Yes I like Toy Story, leave me alone)
1) Impulse shopping no longer appeals to you - If you practice gratitude, you'll learn over time that buying something in the moment may bring a fleeting feeling of joy and happiness, and then it disappears as soon as you mull over what's REALLY bothering you in your mind, and especially when you curse yourself for buying it when the credit card bill comes. With a grateful mind, you'll simply choose to resist the urge to buy some product that doesn't jive with your values, because you know within what you really care about. You won't just "browse" endless shopping websites because you're bored or feeling inadequate.
2) You'll be less forgetful - How does being less forgetful save you money you ask? Well, have you ever lost your wallet, phone keys, shopping bag or anything else because you were rushing, multitasking, or your body and your mind were in two different places? Or miss your plane, a ticketed-entry event, or business appointment? And there you have your answer. When we practice gratitude, we also practice mindfulness, and so we slow down to live in the present and be more conscious of our surroundings. "I'm so thankful my laptop, even though it's not the best, works and does the job for me...oh I better not forget my charging cord again!" ... An actual quote from yours truly :)
3) Social comparison doesn't compel you - When you are grateful for what you have, seeing your friend who bought a new fancy espresso machine or smart watch doesn't make you feel unworthy or wanting to buy the same one. A grateful person is happy for the friend with the nicer, newer product, and thankful for their own belongings. We each lead our own lives and have our own preferences. What one person buys or spends money on, doesn't mean you want to spend your money on the same thing just because you are friends. That's why I never understand why people go shopping in groups and then one person says "Oh look how cool! You should get one too!" And not wanting to be the downer, you cave in.
4) Lifestyle Inflation doesn't stand a chance - Yes folks, it's a real dilemma if there ever was one. When people starting making more money, statistically they spend more too. Who would've thought! A head-scratcher for sure, said no one ever. When you are practicing gratitude for what you have and spending in alignment with your values, getting a $10,000 raise doesn't send you into a spending spree at Restoration Hardware or Nordstrom, nor does it make you want to lease a flashy new car or buy a new furniture set, you know, for the "gram". While you may want to reward yourself with a purchase in accordance with your values, you won't be adjusting your ongoing lifestyle expenses incrementally with the increase in pay, so that leaves more to save, invest, and pay it forward!
5) Less spending on healthcare and personal care - There has been an explosion in the industries of wellness, spas, yoga retreats, therapists, you name it. Funny how it correlates with the rise in widespread use of social media and the internet, right? People feel obligated to be the perfect parent, spouse, business owner, etc that they push themselves to do more, be better, and do it faster. The whole "hustle" and "busy" culture that permeates our lives today doesn't help. When you are grateful and you slow down to be mindful of how rich you already are in many aspects of your life, you are doing your mind a great favor. You're not stressing as much to get the bigger office, newer model car, or make more on your "side hustle" that should really be called "life-consuming hustle". While other's are pulling all-nighters rotating between gig apps, you'll be writing in your gratitude journal curled up with a nice mug of lavender tea...you know, for more zen.