Have you ever been on a food detox? For instance, a juice diet will require discipline and a limit of food intake to fruits and water for a few days to cleanse your body of toxins. A financial cleanse works the same way. If a food detox eliminates the bad stuff such as sugar, fat, or alcohol, the same applies to a financial cleanse that eliminates wasteful or toxic spending. A financial detox is a way of breaking bad money habits. There are several reasons to embark on a financial detox. For example, to save more, to be debt free, to achieve your financial goals, or to improve your mental health. This article seeks to guide you on how to tidy your finances.
Bad habits can creep into our lives while we are not paying attention. It could be a habit of procrastinating that leaves you scrambling all the time or a spending habit that leaves your bank account in bad shape at the end of each month. Fixing these bad financial habits requires focus and willpower. This is where a financial cleanse comes into play. A financial cleanse is designed to help you get a handle on your spending habits. A decision to stop eating out during your cleanse or to entirely forgo unnecessary spending could be applied, and many more. It will help if you become more aware of your spending habits and where you currently spend too much. As a bonus, this will likely help you save more.
Managing your finances isn’t easy. Most times keeping up with bills can be challenging; not overspend and save as much as you should. And all these things can throw your budget out of place. But the good news is that it’s never too late to turn things around and reset. And these simple tips can help get you started:
- Get a handle on your debt
- Set saving goal
- Increase your saving rate
- Keep track of your expenses
- Have a spending limit
- Separate your wants from needs
- Implement the 50/30/20 rule
- Create emergency fund
- Avoid recurring payments and excessive periodic purchases
- Cut off or downgrade spending
- Designate a no-spend week in a month
- Determine your financial priorities-save for your short- and long-term goals
- Make saving automatic
- Watch your savings grow by investing
- Save towards your retirement plan
How do you reset your bad habits with a financial cleanse?
- Decide why you want a financial cleanse: The first question that needs to be asked is why you have decided to embark on a financial cleanse. Going down this lane is tremendous but challenging, and you need to be adequately motivated. Understanding why you want to cleanse can make you readily stay the course.
- Set a time: You must decide how long you want the cleanse to last. It could be for a week, two weeks or an entire month. Choose what works best for you and keep on track, so you do not stop halfway.
- What bad habits are you letting go of: During the cleanse, you must choose what you want to give up. It could be eating out, making frivolous purchases, using cab-hailing services regularly, etc. Whatever you choose to cut off that period, ensure you spend your money on the things you need.
- Spend cash only: While your financial cleansing ensures you spend only cash, this helps to reduce the temptation of swiping your card at every given time. Using cash will help you be even more in tune with your spending during the cleanse. Head up to the closest ATM and withdraw some cash to get started.
- Track your spending and what you do not spend: An expense tracker gives a good picture of your finances. Know how much you spend on food, transportation, data, and other non-essential things. Little expenses add up over time, and expense tracking will help you identify them. For example, a packed lunch could save you about 3,000 Naira from ordering lunch. Once your cleanse is over, you may find it easy to stay with your new ways rather than go back to your old ones.
- How do you feel: As you stop spending on the nice-to-haves and focus more on the must-haves, ask yourself how you feel about the things you cut off. For example, does it make you feel good to have extra money for bigger things like paying off debt or funding your emergency savings?
After your cleanse, you do not need to rush back into old bad habits. Instead, take time to decide and determine how to continue tackling debts, saving, investing, and working towards achieving tidy finance.
We hope that we have been able to provide clarity on financial cleansing and ensure you are financially fit for it. So do, have a great week ahead.
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DEFINITION OF TERMS
Financial Detox: A financial detox is a diet for your finances and a way of breaking any bad money habits that you may have, whether they are old or have crept in recently. The idea is to make it easier to save more, pay off debt faster, achieve your financial goals and even improve your mental health.
Georgie Frost (2022, October 20). Guide to a financial detox from https://www.thetimes.co.uk/money-mentor/article/guide-financial-detox/
Erica Gellerman (2019, June 18). Reset your money habits with spending cleanse from https://www.chime.com/blog/reset-your-money-habits-with-a-spending-cleanse/Changera Team (2021, August 16). Financial Detox and why you should take it seriously from https://changera.co/blog/financial-detox-and-why-you-should-take-it-seriously/