The following comes from student and teacher trainee at Greenville Yoga and Lighten Up! Yoga in Asheville… It is a great reminder.
Yoga helps to teach us that the process of being mindful can lead to real transformation in our lives. When we are mindful we have the power to make informed choices and break away from repeating old habit patterns.
Keeping a daily log of your expenditures is a great way to find mindfulness in your life. Start by writing down the date, amount and category for each and every purchase that you make. The following categories are only a suggestion but I would recommend that you include a category for personal development.
Food, eating out, utilities, entertainment, rent/mortgage, health, school, gifts, and personal development.
Maintaining your expense information in electronic format is a great idea. This way you will have the ability to compare expenditure by category on a monthly basis.
Like many exercises in mindfulness, the key is to acknowledge the choices you make without attachment. Just pay light attention to how you spend your money and in time you will find some changes in your habit patterns. You may be surprised to find that the amounts in some spending categories will actually increase over time.
A great book to read is “Your Money or Your Life” by Joe Dominguez. This book outlines in detail the strategy described above. Another important concept I gleamed from this book was how much it actually costs to work. Think about it. To work in most cases you need to pay for a car which includes the cost of maintenance, insurance and gas. You then need some sort or wardrobe and may eat out for lunch every day. Itemize your daily costs and determine how much your job is costing you.
Be mindful when you drive. Have a light touch to the gas pedal.
Be mindful of how much you eat. Robyn & I almost always share meals when we eat out.
Be mindful of your energy usage. Our Electric Hot Water Heater has the temperature set to 135 degrees.
Be mindful of how you spend money. Cash is definitely harder to let go of.
I would really enjoy hearing about any mindfulness techniques you use to manage your own money or saving tips you can share.