A habit is a repeated behaviour which could be an action or lifestyle choice that happens regularly. From this we can see that there are good habits and bad habits which can impact our daily lives. In this blog we will look at spending habits and how to form new regular behaviour patterns to help us improve our finances during this post pandemic inflation and cost-of-living crisis.
We’ve all heard that saying “its takes 21 days to create a new habit” so let’s dig into where it came from and how it can help us with our spending. The theory originally came from Dr Maxwell Maltz a plastic surgeon who believed that it took patients: “…a minimum of about 21 days for an old mental image to dissolve and a new one to jell.”
Everyone is different and for some people it may take less than 21 days and for others, it may take more than 21 days. Either way, the key here is that building a habit creates automatic behaviour that you can stick to long term to improve your life.
Once you make the commitment to start a new habit/routine and get into the swing of doing it regularly, you start to see the benefits and feel like you are accomplishing something which creates more motivation to keep going. Before you know it, the habit is something you crave and over a year or two, it becomes part of your identity.
The way you spend money is likely to be based on a pattern and set of conditions that you don’t even realise you are fulfilling each time. We are products of our environment and likely to have picked up spending habits from our family and friends over the years. The family home growing up being especially significant in your relationship with money and how you spend, save and invest. On top of this we have our culture, businesses, the media and celebrities trying to influence our behaviours to spend more money.
In order to make changes and improve your finances, the key is to understand what your spending habits are and why you have those conditions in place when you spend. Start by looking at your most recent bank statements and scrutinising each transaction. Remind yourself and question what the payment was for and why it was required. As you start to see the patterns of behaviour, write down a list of your spending habits. Once you have the list of your current spending habits you can see what is holding you back from financial freedom. The big step forward is making the decision to create a new set of conditions and routines which will become your new habits.
There are lots of money saving tips available online. Take a look and see how many you can implement to help you become more saving savvy!
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