Each of us has a relationship with money. It’s a resource we rely on to cover our basic needs and beyond. And though money is a taboo topic for many, we’d like to touch on the subject of financial wellbeing.
Financial wellbeing is not just about the amount of money we manage and possess. Rather it’s also about examining what kind of relationship we have with money itself; is it one of overwhelm, stress, scarcity, fear, abundance, trust? When it comes to how we relate with our funds, there is always room for closer examination. Particularly in how we use money to consume.
To state it plainly, how we consume matters. Trading money for goods and services is a powerful act in that what we choose to purchase is much like a vote; as buying anything contributes to the numeric game that represents an attitude of, “I believe in this and I would like to see more of this”. Which begs the question: what are you personally voting for more of in the world?
The Best Deal or the Best Choice?
Nowadays it’s normal for people to pursue the best “deal”, or lowest price possible when it comes to spending. And though honoring a budget is certainly a part of exercising financial wellness, we can harness our purchasing power and direct funds even more fiercely by contributing to an economy we’d most like to see. This can look like making an active effort in keeping money circulating throughout your community. Such as shopping locally whenever possible, supporting small businesses, or putting money directly back into farmers hands by attending their markets. Basically, this is seeking more sustainable avenues for sourcing what we need. It’s incredibly empowering to make financial choices that stand in integrity with the world we wish to co-create. By shifting our perspective to seeing money as an impactful tool, it may have us second guess some of the purchases we choose to make.
Do We Need That Stuff?
Sometimes financial wellbeing is also recognizing that more often than not, we don’t need more stuff. This may be a challenging concept in a society that’s made shopping and ‘buying things’ a hobby and pastime. But, waking up from numb consumerism is essential in creating a healthy respectful relationship to our finances. This is radical thinking in the day and age of “click of a button” convenience culture. Yet practicing this helps us build trust in our purchasing power, trust that each choice we make is a vote cast in integrity, and not just one out of impulsive gain. The reality is that many items purchased and welcomed into the home end up not being used or worn more than a few times, creating a sense of disposability (thus not *really* caring for it).
So before making the purchase, pause for a moment and feel into the realistic value the item will bring to your life. This is the art of forward thinking and mindful consumption.
Invest in Financial Wellbeing
By re-purposing, reusing, and getting creative with what we already have, we support ourselves on the journey towards more earnest financial wellness. Because spending less frequently on things we only momentarily value allows more space to welcome thoughtful purchases that will stand the test of time. The more we can practice not getting seduced by the shiny new things we don’t particularly need, the sturdier our foundation is to invest our wealth (of any size) into a brighter future for all.
All relationships require attention, listening, and care –– whether they are relationships to people, objects, or money, the core needs do not change. Though it’s natural for matters of finances to feel strenuous, we can undoubtedly shift our relationship to money in a way that keeps us in our personal power, and in healthy co-existence.
By Melissa Aparicio, contributing author
We invite you to discover inspiring and effective ways to care for yourself and to serve others. Now more than ever, caring is what we all need most. Caring for our self. Caring for others around us. Life now demands caring, resilience and compassion like never before. UCA resources available to help include the Self-Care Center, Virtual Volunteering, radio show, publications and online store offering members huge discounts and always free shipping.