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Here Are 13 Ways To Save Money:

1. Be open about money with your family: While growing up, my mother hung a spiral notebook by the back door in the kitchen listing all of the month’s expenditures, church tithes (donations), savings, and extra income. It was her way of telling us where our family’s money was going. If we wanted or needed something, all we had to do was look at that list and see if it was even worth asking her. If there was no money left over for the month, we didn’t ask. If there was, we’d take the risk. Needless to say, all four of us kids got jobs at fifteen so we could have our own income. Expose your children to fiscal responsibility at a young age and see how open they are to understanding the difficulties and benefits that comes with it. I know we did.

2. Designate some money for a side savings I use all of my random craigslist sales or small cash gifts for a Christmas/donation account that I keep on the side. That way, when Christmas comes around or if someone I know is in need, I don’t stress about from where the money is coming. That way, I can buy the gifts and cards for friends and family without having to think twice.

3. Discuss major and non-essential purchases with your spouse before walking into the store. After trial and error, my husband and I have an agreement to discuss money matters and spending budgets before leaving the house. If we cannot come to an agreement, then more research must be completed before we find the optimum situation for a purchase. We avoid debating in public to avoid arguments. It’s a relationship saver.

4. Remind yourself of your financial goals Keep your financial goals at the forefront of your mind, especially when you’re in a spending situation. If spending will honestly help you (and I don’t mean getting the Beemer for your drive to work) then go forward wisely. However, remind yourself of financial goals you desire to meet within a deadline: paying off credit card debt, saving for vacation, saving for a marriage or new child, and so forth. Remind yourself that by living frugally, you’re able to really live the life you’ve always wanted.

5. Go used! I always find it funny how so many people insist on buying NEW when everything eventually becomes USED! I enjoy buying used furniture because with a little research, time, and (sometimes) elbow grease, domestic beauty can be found. A friend of mine, a former CEO for an international corporation, loves finding furniture on the side of the road and fixing them up even though she can afford not to. Check out craigslist in your neighborhood. Cities like San Diego, New York, and Miami have almost everything imaginable for sale – and cheap! The best part is, you can negotiate and there’s no sales tax for most items!

6. Sleep on it If you’re feeling conflicted about a purchase, sleep on it. Many times, I completely forget about what I wanted to buy. Other times, I’ve completely made up my mind and decide to go through with it.

7. Make dining out a special occasion I met a women who spent $2,000+ each month (for a family of two) on dining out. Her logic for this spending was because she was in the middle of remodeling her kitchen and didn’t have a place to cook and dine at home. If she spent the money used for dining out to complete her kitchen, she’d be able to pocket that money for other things like retirement. Make dining out a special occasion one in a while and use the opportunity to celebrate something (like how much money you’re saving!).

8. Organize your home I know a family whose home is so disorganized that they have five pairs of scissors because they keep losing the other ones. Know where everything is with an organized home. Keep stock on everything you have so you don’t feel tempted to purchase something you already have.

9. Go to free events Check your local newspaper, vistors’ bureau, community centers for free events near you. Take advantage of them and reconnect with your community.

10. Use coupons The amount of coupons and special offers have gone up during this recession, so take advantage of them. Get what you really need, though. Shop during sales and have the patience to wait for your favorite item to go on sale.

11. Take care of your wardrobe You do NOT have to launder your clothing after every wear. Most clothing can be washed after every three to five wears. Air dry them, too. The fabric lasts longer. Purchase pieces made of quality fabric and have quality construction. These pieces will last for years, saving you money on the long run and making you buy only basics like t-shirts, under garments, and socks each season.

12. Give yourself MAD MONEY This is money my Grandma uses for totally random, impulse purchases. It’s not a lot. It’s $15 for a week or two, but it’s money for fun expenses. Remember, when it’s gone, it’s gone!

13. DISCIPLINE YOUR EGO! I can’t tell you how many clients and people I meet who justify their over the top spending because their “image depends on it” or if they don’t have a fancy car, big house, or latest gadgets then their “friends” with judge them. Learn to tell the difference between wants and needs. Tell yourself that stuff do not make the man, but rather what man does with his resources that defines him. Real friends will respect you for the decisions you make, not for the things you have. Let go of the need to have stuff and the need to have others’ approval.

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Leslie, Inc. offers solutions for finding happiness through one-on-one coaching, mindful leadership retreats, and digital products. If you’re ready to GET HAPPY, check out Leslie’s guide packs. For more tips on achieving your state of happiness, sign up for Leslie, Inc’s weekly newsletter.

#financialtopics #money #salaryandincome

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“There are four ways, and only four ways, in which we have contact with the world. We are evaluated and classified by these four contacts: what we do, how we look, what we say, and how we say it.” – Dale Carnegie

Have you ever had a friend or acquaintance who had an idea much different than your own? Can you imagine this person insulting you in front of others because your opinion differed? Can you imagine a time when somebody won you over with an act of kindness without even having to explain their politics, ideas, or religion?

In terms of relationships, how we say something, where, and how really matters. Yelling at our spouses doesn’t help get our point across. In reality, yelling says much more than what you’re yelling about. It says that you don’t know how to communicate in any other way and that you don’t really care how you are perceived by your spouse, children, and others who may be around.

One lesson I learned with my husband, Franck, is to make agreements and establish understandings about big purchases before we set foot inside a store. I’ve noticed by watching others and observing our own actions that arguing over things (literally things) sends the wrong message to those around us: That we are not a cohesive couple who understands understands each other. Not to mention, it’s just plain uncomfortable to be around couples who fight in front of others.

I brought this up with my husband and he totally agreed. Now, we make sure to research, debate, and come to an agreement on the object of our desire before heading out to buy it. For men, this also saves time from actually having to be in the store for longer than fifteen minutes.

Try this with your significant other or someone you care about. Have agreements about what you will and will not discuss in public. Agree on how and how not to act in public. Once, you can master yourself in public, see how you’ll be able to transfer these types of understandings to the most private arenas of your life.

These types of boundary settings may seem “constrictive”, but think about how much time and energy you are saving from damage control after you’ve made a fool of yourself in all four types of contact.

Having personal truths and opinions are valuable as we make our way through life, trying to understand its vast complexities. Our messages sound off and come back to us in innumerable ways. How we send off our message matters and not only through what we say, but how we act, how we look, and how we say things.

Think about it. You may be right about something, but as long as you’re acting like a silly jerk, you’ll never reach anybody.

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Leslie, Inc. offers solutions for finding happiness through one-on-one coaching, mindful leadership retreats, and digital products. If you’re ready to GET HAPPY, check out Leslie’s guide packs. For more tips on achieving your state of happiness, sign up for Leslie, Inc’s weekly newsletter.

#career #communication #personaldevelopment #relationshipmanagement

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Our egos are the part of ourselves that distinguishes our individual selves as different and separate from the outside world. As a function of our being-ness on earth, it reminds us of our separateness as people and, at the same time, our unity as human beings.

From time to time, our egos and this sense of separateness can get the best of us and an unhealthy ego and rear its ugly head. When it does, we create unnecessary battles with the world. When we identify too much as individual and different, this imbalance, defined as selfishness, causes suffering, hatred, and isolation between ourselves and the greater good.

Here are six ways I have identified to help us explore the subject of egotism and liberate ourselves from the chains of our separateness.

1. Liberate ourselves from the need to feel superior Personal and professional acclaim does not involve being better than others, but rather involves setting higher standards for oneself.

There were times that I have judged others on the basis of their appearance, achievements, belongings, and so forth. I heard a funny song the other day by a comedian who said “The amount of money I have makes me better than you and because I’m rich it makes me more interesting and cool”. We all know that this is not always the case.

We must realize that we’re all born equal and that the lack we see in others is simply potential that has yet to realize itself. At the end of the day, we’re all people trying to figure out what our best is – in our own different ways.

Comparing can lead us down the wrong track; a track of resentment, hostility, and suffering. Those are feelings that I have known and these feelings materialize into arguments and decisions that don’t always serve us.

2. Release the need to have more. During a conversation, a man told me that he wanted more in his life to make him happy. When I asked him what “more” meant, he said, “A bigger house, a nicer car, you know… stuff.”

Upon asking him what that stuff meant to him, he told me he felt that everyone was judging him and that he believed life was about getting more things to show that he’s successful. It didn’t take long for this man to reveal that he was, in fact, very unhappy about the direction his life was taking, feeling as if he was never where he wanted to be and never seemed to have enough.

This type of thinking results in us always being in a perpetual state of wanting and striving without a clear and definite path to our goals. This perpetual state eliminates the possibility of materializing our goals and values.  When we stop needing more, we find that the true things that we desire begin to show themselves to us now.

The task of letting go of the need to have more begins with detaching our emotions and realizing how little we actually need to live happy and fulfilling lives and know what it really takes to make us truly fulfilled.

3. Letting go of our what others think about us

Good or bad, reputations aren’t things, but rather images in the minds of others and consequently, things we have very little – if any – control over. Say, for example, I went to a dinner party with twelve people. All twelve people would have something different to say about me by the end of the evening.

When we’ve become so entranced by what others think about us, we forget about our own personal purpose; our life’s work, if you will. Adhering to our own personal message can act as a guide through the very limited perspectives and opinions of others. Most often than not, we allow ourselves to be dragging down by the limited perspectives of others rather than uplifted. Choose to be uplifted; by allowing that energy to propel you into the direction you have chosen for yourself.

4. Choose not to be defined by achievements (and failures) Many people find themselves to be the things they’ve done – good or bad. In this case, allowing ourselves to boast over our accomplishments denies the fact that everyone and everything is capable of harnessing their energies into greatness or nothing if they so choose.

Sometimes, I find that people – myself included – get hung up on the things we’ve done. So much so, that it keeps us from being open to experience new things in our lives. To snap myself back on track, I like to say, “Ok, I’ve experienced that. What else shall I do now?”

What I’ve discovered is turning attention to the act of creating and detaching ourselves to what actions – good or bad – have occurred, we’re allowing ourselves the ability to create more in total freedom.

5. We don’t always have to be right

This one is a toughie for so many; even myself! I always remind myself that I rather be happy than right, because I see so many people who rather be right than happy! What’s the point of that?

Unfortunately, the ego – that sense of personal identity – has the desire to prove itself right and others wrong. This type of thinking can lead to feelings of hostility towards others, can isolate us from creating better solutions together, and can create a sense of bitterness towards others and the world at large.

Releasing the need to be right in conversation and between relationships is choosing to trust that the truth will make itself known. This act strengthens the ability to stay focused of your life’s purpose, to feel good about what you’re doing, and improve relationships. Try it out for yourself! In the middle of an argument, think twice: “Am I arguing just to be right?” What do we really have to prove, anyway?

6. Stopped being offended

This is where we can utterly be stopped on our tracks without doing a thing. Feeling insulted can bring a variety of emotions. For example, the person didn’t respect us and thus we’re left feeling upset for hours, days, months, and even years. The only person we’re hurting in this case is ourselves because we’re choosing to focus on that hurt than the potential of new experiences.

I’ve also seen people look for reasons to be offended. Saying and doing things to spark controversy, to incite someone to say or do something contradictory just to prove oneself right. There must be a better way to teach others the truth as we see it.

Picking at our wounds keeps us from completely healing. Dropping our need to be right and having to see the world in a certain way can restore relationships, improve our lives, and move forward on the path of creating and experiencing new things.

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It’s not easy controlling our egos. They can be mean, nasty, and short sighted. Even as I work on all of these, I care to share these thoughts with you to save you from the suffering I’ve endured as a result of my own ignorance. How do you overcome your own ego?

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Leslie, Inc. offers solutions for finding happiness through one-on-one coaching, mindful leadership retreats, and digital products. If you’re ready to GET HAPPY, check out Leslie’s guide packs. For more tips on achieving your state of happiness, sign up for Leslie, Inc’s weekly newsletter.

#personaldevelopment #relationshipmanagement #spiritualdevelopment

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