Embrace Laziness This Summer and Save Money!
Then the budget gets forgotten as spending increases not only during the summer months but lasts until the end of the year and the cycle starts all over again.
The reason I am writing about this is twofold.
Let’s talk about Breaking the Busy Habit.
“Busy is a sign of success.” Many people wear it like a badge of honour. I played that game myself until I hit the wall and it came crashing down on me.
NOT, taking vacation, down time, coffee breaks etc where we disconnect and that means, no phones, no internet, no tv just taking some time to sit back and be lazy is detrimental to your health. Stress, burnout and depression are the norm these days because we have literally retrained our brain and body with the belief that sitting doing nothing, gazing out the window is considered bad, lazy, and not a good use of our time. Feelings of fear of missing out or guilt around chores/work not getting done creep into our conscious thoughts when we become idle. No one likes to feel like that therefore we get back up and start working or joining in on all the activities that keep us busy busy busy, exhausted and stressed.
The one thing you cannot buy is TIME. You get to control how your time is invested. What matters most to you? We all have the same 24 hours per day.
So how do we break the cycle when our plates are so darn full?
I think that the benefits of taking lazy and idle time during the day and on vacation are much greater than you can imagine.
First thing to acknowledge is taking downtime is a practice. It an adjustment to get used to, because our brains have literally been re-wired to accommodate our busy hectic schedules. We have been trained to operate 24 hours a day never taking time to rest and slow down. God forbid we get caught being lazy or daydreaming. Therefore, you may experience some push back to the exercises I suggest. Be gentle with yourself as you practice being idle or bored.
I have a CRAP sheet I give to my clients who have a hard time letting go of the day or are being interrupted by critical self-talk during the day. I ask them to write all their thinking crap onto the sheet of paper parking it for later use. Not that they ever go back to it because who wants to fill their mind with useless self-talk. If you would like a copy of my CRAP sheet send me an email and I will send it out to you. mailto:email@example.com?subject=Send me the CRAP Sheet
Tips for slowing down, being idle and practicing boredom.
I am sure you can take it from here. Remember those long hot steamy summer days are for retraining your brain to be idle.
I get my best ideas when I am doing nothing or playing at something that I enjoy and don’t have to think about.
Spending more during the warmer summer months can really mess with your long-term financial plan and create tension in your relationship. By practicing the above-mentioned idleness exercises you will be less inclined to schedule activities that cost money. Seems simple and it is. Here are some other ideas to keep you within your spending plan. I was going to say budget but I really dislike that word.
Why do we start spending more in the warmer summer months?
Well, it’s warmer and since we have been mostly stuck indoors during the colder winter months our impulse is to go out have fun with friends and family. We also tend to plan the big family vacation as well as have pressure to keep our kids out of our hair during school breaks, not to mention daycare and summer camps.
I remember how hard it was to keep my daughter entertained and looked after while I worked. The cost of summer care if I could find it, and summer camps added up. During my summer vacation we would put our little pool up, invite friends over to swim and there were many days of little girls camping out overnight. We love to entertain and made it our mission to be a destination house with the BBQ on and the fire pit bringing welcoming neighbours and friends. We still do actually.
Another reason money can be spent Willy Nilly during the summer is quite often we want to make up for time not spent with our children. Perhaps, work has been long and hard and your summer vacation is a way to really spoil your family and spending extravagantly makes your feel happy. It fills a void and it’s a way of making up for time not spend together. Cultivating quality time together creating experiences go much further in our memory banks than buying material items that go by the wayside very quickly. I suggest creating experiences and cultivating quality time together fully present and in the moment.
One of my favourite summer memories was during a summer BBQ. The adults were having a great time when my daughter decided she wanted to paint her Dad’s eyebrows pink. It took a little persuading but before you know, it together with her friends, we pulled out all the old Halloween wigs and had placed them on each of the fathers then painted their eyebrows and beards pink and blue. I never laughed so much and we will always remember that night fondly. There may have been a cold drink involved as well.
Tips to keep Summer Spending in line.
In summary, learning and retraining your brain to rest on idle will actually increase your creativity and productivity this summer. It will also be a great way to stay within your summer spending plan keeping in alignment with your long-term financial plan. Emotional Spending is like emotional eating. It is never the spending or eating that is the problem. It is the reason why you are spending. Which is most often a feeling that you are attempting to experience like joy and happiness, which is covering up perhaps loneliness, sadness and guilt.
Remember to appreciate what you have in your life each day, your children, spouse and friends. Spend quality time verses spending to ease the guilt of overworking. Practice down time without your devices. Start daydreaming again your brain will learn to open up to it, slowing down the critical I have to keep busy, so much to do self-talk. Life is to be enjoyed on the journey it is not a race to be more and have more or a race to the finish line. Create memories that last a lifetime.
Feel free to reach out to me if you need guidance on your financial journey both in the financial dreaming and practical planning aspect. I am at your service. Don't forget to join me on Social Media see the links below.
Writing has never been easy for me, for years I have been a numbers girl, Financial Planner afraid to really speak my truth. No longer shall I hold my truth back. 33 Years of working in the Financial Industry and Coaching has given me unique experiences and insights. So share I will....