It might be time for an attitude adjustment. In fact, with the pressure to overspend and take on debt to meet the demand and expectations of the holidays, an attitude adjustment may be just what you need for both your emotional and financial health.
It’s not surprising that, during the “season of giving,” many of us feel stressed by the depressing realization that we just can’t afford to live up to what we feel is being demanded of us, by ourselves as well as others—not to mention by retailers. The holiday shopping season may only remind us of what we can’t afford and what we don’t have.
Without an attitude adjustment, this can rob us of all the joy we are entitled to—not only during holidays, but every day. Worse than that, many of us try to fill the “joy-void” by buying stuff we can’t afford to feel better and in the holiday spirit, only to experience the guilt and remorse of a financial hangover when the bills come due.
Among the biggest barriers to making good money decisions, is the habit of worrying that we don’t have enough and obsessing over how to get more. Changing this requires you to adjust your attitude, and create a mindset of disciplined abundance, not desperate deprivation. Here’s how:
1. Learn to Enjoy What You Have, Where You Are
If financial planning feels like punishment, you won’t stick to it. So budget for your bills, savings, and paying down debt, but also include something for you to enjoy, monthly. As long as it’s within your budget, it’s okay.
2. Be Grateful
Stop thinking in terms of what you don’t have—the flyest car, the biggest house, the latest clothes—and be thankful for having a roof over your head, food to eat, good health, family, friends, and faith.
3. Join a Support Team to Deal With Your Money Issues
Try debtorsanonymous.org to find meetings where you can discuss your financial challenges with others and gain new perspectives on your relationship with money. You can also try to form a support team yourself.
You may not have as much as you want to be able to give or feel you deserve to have, but there are plenty of others who have far less. Operating from a position of gratitude and abundance is the first step to achieving a wealth-building mindset.
Black Enterprise Executive Editor-At-Large Alfred Edmond Jr. is an award-winning business and financial journalist, media executive, entrepreneurship expert, personal growth/relationships coach, and co-founder of Grown Zone, a multimedia initiative focused on personal growth and healthy decision-making. This blog is dedicated to his thoughts about money, entrepreneurship, leadership and mentorship. Follow him on Twitter at @AlfredEdmondJr.