How to Go on a Financial Detox
The newest fad in health and wellness is inarguably the detox. People detoxify their bodies through diet, exercise and even powerful supplements, in order to purify themselves at the cellular level to feel better, look better and be better. They detoxify their minds of negative thoughts and emotions, their relationships of people who bring them down, and even their closets and homes of possessions that are no longer serving them.
At ARIIX, we are all about helping you create the financial security of your dreams. We want you to take that vacation and send the kids to that Ivy-League college. But that kind of financial security means taking baby steps, and sometimes the first one you need to make is to detox your finances from all the things that aren’t setting you up for success.
Today we’re looking at financial toxins. Are your spending habits toxic? Does your budget need detoxing? And how do you go on a financial detox? Find out below.
What is Toxic Spending?
When your spending is out of control; when you spend more than you save; when your bank account is constantly in the red, and you never seem able to pay off credit card debt. These are signs that your spending habits have gone toxic.
Just like those in your body, financial toxins also wreak havoc on your physical and mental health. When funds are tight, you’re prone to stress, worry, anxiety and fear. These feelings cause your heart rate to soar, your quality of sleep to plummet, and can even lead to chest pains and palpitations. Stress is good for no one, and money is one of the most common stressors out there.
How to Detox Your Finances
Now that you know what toxic finances are, maybe you’ve discovered it’s time for your own detox. But how do you get started? Whereas a nutritional detox starts with combining the foods and products that will help your body purge itself of toxins, a financial detox is slightly different. Here are the steps:
- Get personal with your budget. Identify the areas of your spending that are out of control, and tighten the reins. We’ve previously written an entire post about areas in the budget that commonly need a nice trim.
- Spend within your means, but don’t go crazy. If there is an item you really want but can’t currently afford, save up for it for a few months instead of charging it. With that said, don’t go overboard. Life is meant to be lived and enjoyed. If you aren’t enjoying it, you’ll begin to resent your budget and will be less likely to stick to it.
- Add a waiting period. We are creatures of instant gratification. But instant gratification will send your budget into a tailspin. When on a financial detox, force yourself into a waiting period when making purchasing decisions. Sure, you may really want that sweater, but after waiting two weeks, you might find you don’t actually need it and save yourself the cash.
- Go old-school and get the finances off your phone. It’s fairly common knowledge that the more convenient it is to make payments, the more out of control your spending habits become. Cash apps and other shortcuts make your spending too Cut the mobile connection and get back to physical spending. Physical spending connects you with your cash so you feel the effects of it more personally and think twice before making a purchase.
- Challenge yourself. There’s no better time than during a financial detox to see just how strict with your spending you can be. Make it a challenge to spend as little as possible during a given period. Then build your budget after that experience.
- Increase your income. When you can no longer cut anything from the budget (housing, lights, heat, food — they’re all absolutely essential, plus many others), it’s time to look at your income. Adding a second stream of income by starting your own ARIIX small business is the perfect way to up the income to help meet your family’s monthly needs.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place with your finances, it’s time to get serious, and a detox is just the tool you need to turn things around. Take these tips into consideration the next time you’re looking to build a better financial future for years to come.