3 Reasons why you are an impulsive spender and what to do about it: Lydia Chinery – Hesse

This September, we’re out here on these streets trynna secure the bag. If you’re an impulsive spender, this one is for you.

As a financial advisor working with Holborn Assets, Lydia Chinery-Hesse has helped clients put measures in place to control their spending while increasing their savings and growing their wealth.

She has been working with various nationalities to help them plan their financial future by giving them transparent, objective and honest advice. Lydia helps them visualize their personal (and business) goals and structure a plan towards achieving them.

Earlier this year, she created a Facebook group called Love Yourself Financially, a community of global women who are dedicated to being the boss of their finances.

Their goal is to be financially secure and free – which has a different meaning to each member.


The Scenario

You’ve just finished a successful meeting and decide to take a short walk through the mall, for some window shopping.

Before you know it, you’ve spent money shopping for more clothes you don’t need!

It’s 4:15 pm and you’re absolutely famished. While you could wait another hour to get home and eat some leftovers from last night’s home-cooked supper, you decide to order food that would cost the same amount as your groceries for the week.

Even if you haven’t found yourself in one of these situations before, you’ve definitely spent money impulsively in one way or another.

  • Why is this?
  • Why are we so impulsive? More importantly…
  • What can we do about it?

Here are the three main reasons for being an impulsive spender, and a few ways you can improve your spending habits.

1. You’re using a credit card

Studies show that when we pay using our credit card, we’re more likely to spend money. With a credit card, your thinking will be more along the lines of “out of sight, out of mind”, as you don’t see the money ‘leaving’ your wallet.

Conversely, when we spend with cash, it hurts a little, and you tend to think twice before spending it.

What should you do about it?

• Until you get to a point where you have significantly improved your discipline in this area, ditch the credit card.

• Ditching the card means spending cash only.

• Withdraw your cash allocation for the week, and carry only what you need on a daily basis.

2. Because money should be spent

If you’re able to spend money impulsively, consider yourself fortunate to have the money to do so. That being said, just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.

As an impulsive spender, It’s likely you’re not tracking your expenses by writing them down or through an app.

If you did, you’d be less likely to spend mindlessly as you’d always be aware of what you’re spending on and how much you’re spending. 

What should you do about it?

• Before you’re about to buy something, you want, pause. Wait a day, a week, a month or longer to determine if you really need it. Chances are you don’t.

• Track your expenses, create a budget and live by it.

• Get an accountability buddy. When you’re itching to spend, call a friend you trust who will talk to you straight.

• Meal prep. Don’t give yourself an excuse to buy a meal. 

• Try no-spend days a few times per month.

In addition to all of these, it’s worth considering…what else could you be doing with that money? This brings me to my last point:

3. You are not thinking long-term

Image result for African woman thinking gifs

Living for today will most likely mean scrambling or struggling in the future.

Perhaps it would be wiser to live according to this African Proverb, “For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today”. 

What should you do about it? 

• Set your savings goal and reward yourself for achieving them (without spending money – be creative!)

• Save towards future plans. Put some money aside monthly towards that goal, whether it’s a vacation, car purchase, etc.

• Be intentional about your long term goals. This begins by figuring out how much you’ll need to either live comfortably in retirement or to reach financial security (where passive income pays for your expenses).

Once you have that figured out, work backward from there to determine how much you should be saving (and investing) in order to reach your target.

Practicing delayed gratification improves your discipline and you’ll also enjoy the financial rewards in the future – @lydialydzzz Click To Tweet

It takes some self-reflection and being honest to admit that there are areas in which we need to be more disciplined in order for the impulsiveness to end. 


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A MINIMALIST’S PERSPECTIVE TO SETTING GOALS

Goal setting is paramount to individuals as it helps with the rebranding, focus, and orderliness of life. I mean, we all have aspirations and dreams and accomplishments we would love to attain yes?

And when it comes to aiming that peak, it’s all about good intentions, yes?

When it comes to sharing our aspirations with others, we get bold, we get optimistic, and we get daring, yes? Most people even go as far as creating reward systems for themselves, like when I positively tick so soon my goal list, I have to get me some Birkin Bag because I sure deserve it! Right?

So why do we let the negative kill our vibe? Why is it that we often fall short of the goals we set for ourselves? How come we wonder why we are at the same place we were years past, with the same poor habits and no sign of progress?

It’s simple.

Start simple and work your way from the ground up Click To Tweet

The answer to the entire why questions are because as human beings, complicated is our tag names, no offense. We tend to overcomplicate and make vague the steps necessary to accomplish the goals we set for ourselves.

As there are loads of various perspectives to setting goals, this article gives you another strategy to set and look at your goals progressing from a minimalist’s perspective.

LITERALLY, HUG BIG PICTURE IDEAS

This may be very contrary to what minimalist’s belief in but its standard. Embracing that big light bulb idea will make one hone in on what we tend to get out of this life.

This idea may range from securing a major deal in your niche, wanting a big family or just being financially well off. It could be anything that tickles your fancy, just make sure you write it down on a paper with your lovely pen.

Note: it’s important to take the time to grasp what you want your life to be all about, and what you would want to achieve big time.

PRIORITIZE THE PARAMOUNT

This is the forte of minimalists. So once you’re done listing out your big ideas and dreams’, noting the order of importance is the next step.

When you create a prioritized list, you are getting rid of the confusing clutter and allowing yourself focus on what you truly want to accomplish.

So this is it: you create a list of your goals beginning with the most important to achieve at this point in your life to the least important.

Note: One has to realize that the goals found at the bottom of the list are still important but not as crucial as the ones found at the top. Now, success is just around the corner because you have something real, a real end goal you wish to achieve and not just wishful thinking goals.

CREATE TANGIBLE STEPS

Now that your priorities have been set, you can start using this information to pinpoint steps that would help you achieve the most important goal on your list.

Remember, you need to take time out and think deeply for you to establish well thought out steps to achieving your goal.

Now, try to begin with the most basic achievement you can think of. As with how we humans evolved, and our learning process, we started learning A, B, C before forming sentences. So start simple and work your way from the ground up. Remember with previous steps, it’s important to note them down so you can refer back to them later.It helps when you keep your laid out thoughts short, black & white and precise so it’s clear to see if you have successfully accomplished a step…or not.

This phase is more or less, understanding the significance of creating a solid foundation that is easy to grasp and build upon.

GET RID OF THE CLUTTER

As a minimalists’ main goal is to declutter in all aspects of life, this works in setting goals as well. Any step or thing that doesn’t aid in your success should be scratched out, with every ounce of intentionality and no looking back.

Anything that proves as a barrier in achieving your goals, be it an excess of social events, ideas, obligations, people or items, scratch ‘em out, please.

Now don’t get me wrong, they may not be negative influencers, in general, but they may be distractive and you won’t be needing any distractions when it comes to pinpointing the goals and heights you want to attain at a certain period.

We need focus vibes and not distraction vibes.

If you want to lead a simple life, scratch the reward system, let go of that chocolate and be bold. Click To Tweet

REWARD SYSTEM…OR NOT.

Reward system is an innocent idea but totally unnecessary. For minimalists, they see value in the lifestyle they have opted in for and they know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.

They know the rewards and gains they have to look forward to by achieving their goals and so they embrace the simple idea that for every phase completed, they are a step closer to achieving their desired goals.

This setting goal strategy may be very tough on people and opting in for the reward system is not a bad idea but if you want to lead a simple life, scratch the reward system, let go of that chocolate and be bold.

REVAMPED LIFESTYLE

A minimalist strategy to setting goals gives a more defined approach to things and a simple approach to creating and meeting your desired goals.

Once you’re done setting your goals, you start getting results in your overall lifestyle, positive results as that’s the beautiful outcome of setting goals.

It’s more like you put in hard work in one area of your life and you see a transformation in other areas. Keep that in mind.

Note: Don’t try to skip previous steps to jump. It doesn’t work that way as the steps work hand in hand and can be confusing when you do one without the other.

Achieving your goals using the steps and systems embedded in this minimalists perspective to setting goals will create an easy path to follow and remember there is no rush or time limit. Just don’t invite procrastination to the party and we will be good.

Good luck!


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5 ways to escape uncontrolled consumerism

We are human beings and living as such requires us to consume things, even those of us interested in living a minimalist life.

A minimalist is someone who operates a moderate or conservative approach when it comes to material things.

I am from a polygamous home and boy do we own a lot and still try to consume a lot but personally, I have worked hard to escape uncontrolled consumerism as it becomes excessive when it extends beyond what is really needed.

Learn how to live a minimalist lifestyle by escaping uncontrolled consumerism with these 5 steps Click To Tweet

We tend to mix up our wants and needs and forget or overlook how much space, time, strength and money we lose on things that are not paramount in our lives. Once we start consuming more than what’s needed, the boundaries set are removed, instantly.

Our desires get reshaped and it happens so fast, we get used to consuming easily. A lot of people get overly trendy overnight, getting things that tickle our fancy, wanting to show up ‘right’ and live up ‘right’ and be in debt or be materialistically possessive.

Now don’t get me wrong. There’s absolutely nothing wrong in wanting to be trendy and leveling up, living up to standard, but are we going about it the right way? Because going about it the excessive way consumes our limited resources.

It’s about time we escape that cycle and embrace the minimal. Minimalism in this regard is living simply and subtly and the mantra is “less is more”.

Living with the utmost intentionality and not deprivation, as the misconception people tend to have. Living a minimalist life seeks only to buy and keep the essentials, remove the frivolous items and keep the significant ones and in doing so, values intentional endeavors.

Here are 5 practical benefits of escaping uncontrolled consumerism:

Reduce debts

This had to come first as our finances are very important. Being in any kind of debt isn’t fun and that causes a load of stress in our lives.

It takes a toll on our health and mentally, we’re just not up for any vibe, whatsoever. But what if you could reduce your debts? What if plans to pay back your debts turn up positive? What if you could put your feet down and say no to debts?

Your life would be stress-free.

Resist the desire to live beyond your means

The internet is double-faced. Its good and can be not so good at times. As a woman, I see my mates riding a 2018 Mercedes Benz GLA, in a fancy color, say hot red and I start comparing myself to that and then start calculating the amount I’ve got in my bank account or try to save up for it so I can post it up too and live a digital age life.

The car is mouthwatering, yes. But that only invites lifestyle envy into our lives and the internet promoting the lifestyle of the rich as superior or enviable.

This is where the intentionality of living a minimalist life comes to play. Only with an intentional rejection can one silence this constant yelling of uncontrolled consumerism.

Have more contentment

Many people believe if they reach a level of contentment, their desire for excessive consumption will diminish. But the truth is the intentional rejection of excessive consumption paves way for contentment in our lives.

Pursuing minimalism realigns our lives around our greatest passions and results in a far better contentment with life than before.

Remember what matters to you in the world

Have we been too busy seeking happiness in the wrong places? Have we valued worldly things over family, relationships, religion?

It’s time to realize what means important to us and make a priority list because true life and true happiness is found in the invisible things of life.  

Resist the need to keep up with evolving trends

Change is a constant thing and as regards fashion and lifestyle, trends evolve. We are in the modern world and we can’t keep wearing style from the 90’s but that doesn’t mean we need to always change our wardrobe as trends come up.

That’s our ‘want’ knocking our ‘need’ over. As a wise man once said, “Every generation laughs at the old fashions, but religiously follows the new”.

The wisdom imbibed in this sentence strikes me as it relates and applies to fashion, decoration, lifestyle or design. Why don’t we remove ourselves from the pursuit altogether?

Escaping uncontrolled consumerism isn’t as easy as ABC, it isn’t a walk in the park so is minimalism. But once you make up your mind and find that ‘intentional’ drive, you can do it.


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