It’s so easy to just mindless spending money when we’re “browsing the web”, impulse purchases are second nature to most of us – but it’s so hard to make real investments. Why so? I think it’s because our relationship with money and finances are not as healthy as they could be.
Money is sexy… but finances are not. “I love doing my books and sticking with my budget” – said no one ever! As a finance professional, I see how finance and money are related. When you manage your finances, you have more power over your money.
Let’s think for a second – if you know what monies you expect to come in, and when, you can plan what money will go out, and when. Having a grip of basic needs helps us plan for emergencies, nice to’s and a “slush fund”. Knowing your finances give you the power to decide where your sweat earning money will go.
I had a big unexpected expense this week. My *beloved beautiful rose gold* computer was giving up on me. The most recurring item on my screen was the little circle rainbow. My computer would take minutes to turn on and off. My spreadsheets would crash one-too-many times. While my computer was ah-so-adorable, my productivity was inexistent.
So, I did what we all do this day and age – I scheduled an appointment at the Apple Store – go talk with the genius. After over one hour running tests, cleaning up the computer, I got the verdict that I was dreading: there was nothing wrong with the computer per se – I just needed a “stronger” computer to deal with all the files and applications I need to run my business. *insert crying face* but… I host everything on the cloud. Would an external hard drive fix the problem? Nope… I needed a brand new computer. The genius advice me the requirements I’d need (even if I wanted to go the Windows route). And off I went.
I got back home defeated – Apple doesn’t make cute little rose gold computers anymore, I got the most purrrfect skin for my computer. It’s so light and so “me”. And I don’t really have $3,000 to spend on a computer. What I really need is a vacation, a real vacation – not a new computer.
Being a numbers person, I came back home, crunched my numbers, looked into financing, my credit card limit – all the fun stuff. (Yes… I am a financial coach that belives on credit card – we can get to it in another time)
And then I asked myself 4 questions:
- Will this investment bring value to my clients?
- Will this investment bring value to my business?
- Will this investment save time?
- Do I have the financial resources to make this investment?
Surprisingly, the answer was yes to all the questions. The intention of investing in my business, to be able to perform at my best and save time to work on my clients and on other projects is way more profitable than watching the rainbow circle loading. This was spending money with intention.
I said bye-bye to the vacation in my dreams, emptied my J.Crew cart and bought a brand new computer.
While a new computer was not in my short term budget, I did have a slush fund on my business budget for “unexpected expenses”.
What I learned from this anxiety drenching experience was to think thrice before any purchase – really look into the value it’s bringing to your life – personally or professionally.
Before hitting “complete the order” think about what void that purchase is filling. Find your core questions, your core values.
Let me know in the comments below when was the last time you struggled with a big purchase
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