Sometimes it feels like joy and financial responsibility can’t coexist together, but mindful splurges make it possible to have your cake and eat it too! You don’t have to break the bank to give yourself the occasional treat while still achieving long-term financial goals. In this article, we’ll show you how to balance treat and long-term financial planning for a happier and healthier financial future.
1. The Value of Mindful Spending
Mindful spending is an invaluable habit. It will help you avoid long-term financial troubles as well as give you peace of mind. Here are some tips to help you become a mindful spender:
- Set a budget. Start by tracking your spending for a few months, and categorizing it into essential and nonessential items. Knowing how much you’re spending will help you set limits and create an accessible budget that you can stick to.
- Prioritize. Use your budget to decide what your priorities are. Cut out any unnecessary expenses that are eating away at your bank account.
- Check in with yourself. Check in with yourself before making a purchase to make sure that it is within your budget and necessary.
Creating an emergency fund is also a good idea. It can give you financial freedom and help you avoid a debt spiral. Put aside small amounts of money each month and use it only in case of an emergency.
You can also practice mindful spending by shopping around. Try to find the best deal possible for the item you need. Consider buying used items, going to discount stores, or online shopping.
Finally, remember that mindful spending is an ongoing process and commitment. Keep track of your purchases and remind yourself of your budget goals regularly. Commit to being mindful and creative when it comes to spending to develop healthy financial habits for the long run.
2. Making Room for “Treats” in your Budget
Following a Budget
Adopting a budget and sticking to it is the key to financial success. But what about those little extras, or “treats” that make life a bit more exciting? The good news is it is possible to plan for these surprises without going off track.
Start by planning out how much you save each month, and also set goals for yourself. As an example, if you have a goal of saving 500 dollars each month, allocate more of the smaller amounts towards the treats you buy yourself for staying on track.
It’s also important to differentiate between wants and needs. Setting aside a larger portion of your budget for needs, like groceries and rent can help ensure you have enough budget to also do the things you want, such as attend a concert or buy a nice outfit.
When it comes to “treat” items and expenses, a lot of willpower is necessary. This could mean looking elsewhere for discounts, like thrift stores or online second-hand stores. It could also mean setting a limit for yourself and only buying when there are sales happening.
Celebrate your financial success along the way to help keep yourself motivated. Some ideas include purchasing a small piece of jewelry, booking a weekend away or having a movie night with friends.
By making room in your budget for “treats”, it is possible to balance everyday items with a little bit of fun. As long as you set limits for yourself, you can easily stay on track with your budget.
3. Setting Financial Goals for the Future
Sometimes, financial goals can seem overwhelming and daunting when it comes to thinking about the future. But it doesn’t have to be this way, with small steps, you can set yourself up for success.
Start Planning Today
The first step in setting financial goals is to figure out what it is that you want to accomplish. Do you want to save a certain amount of money, pay off debt, or build a nest egg? Once you know your overall objectives, then you can begin to structure a plan to achieve them.
Set Clear, Measurable, Achievable Goals
When setting goals, it’s important to be realistic and specific. Vague goals that are too lofty won’t help in achieving realistic results. Create actionable tasks that are manageable, trackable, and have deadlines. This will help you stay motivated to stay on track.
Track Your Progress
The next step is to track your progress. This can help you evaluate if you’re on track to reaching your goals or if you need to make adjustments in order to stay on course. Create a spreadsheet or use a budgeting app to ensure that you have an accurate snapshot of where your finances are. This data can help you assess whether or not you’re on pace.
Financial goals are not always set in stone. Life can throw curveballs, things may come up that you didn’t anticipate or plan for, and that is part of the process. Don’t be too hard on yourself if things don’t come together as quickly as you’d like. Take a step back, re-evaluate if necessary, and adjust your plan to fit your changing circumstances.
- Start planning today
- Set clear, measurable, achievable goals
- Track your progress
- Be flexible
No matter how big or small your financial goals are, setting intentions for the future is an important part of financial planning. Don’t be intimidated by the process, just take small steps, be consistent, and you will be well on your way to achieving what you want.
4. Enjoy Treats & Reap the Rewards
Indulge in Some Guilt-Free Pleasures
If you’re dead set on staying healthy and achieving your goals, then why not reward yourself for all your hard work in the process? Indulging in some delightful treats every now and then helps make your progress much more enjoyable. Not only that, but with appropriate portions (using moderation) these treats can easily fit into your diet.
- Fresh berries – Rich in antioxidants, vitamins and fiber. A small helping can give you some sweet satisfaction.
- Dark chocolate – High in flavanols that may benefit cardiovascular health, and helps keep cravings in check.
- Greek yogurt – Low in fat, high in protein and packed with probiotics, this yogurt can turn any health food into a creamy delight.
- Trail mix – A healthy snack containing a variety of seeds, nuts and dried fruits.
Giving into your cravings every now and then is never a bad thing. Rather than feeling guilty about it however, try swapping out the unhealthy options for the healthier alternatives above. Not only can you indulge yourself without the guilt, but you can also reap the rewards. These healthier treats will fuel your body with high vitamins and minerals, as well as dietary fiber that provides for better digestion and overall wellbeing.
Including a variety of snacks and treats in your diet can also make your “healthy” journey much more enjoyable. With appropriate portions, you can get the best of both worlds. So next time you’re feeling like something sweet, don’t be afraid to indulge yourself – you’ve earned it!
Mindful splurging is a great way to treat yourself while still keeping your financial goals in sight. No matter how small, every mindful splurge feels like a great reward for reaching both short-term and long-term goals. So what are you waiting for? Go out and indulge in your well-deserved rewards and cheers to a more balanced lifestyle!