What it’s about: Saving is about prolonging enjoyment of something you love, and sometimes things that look like money…. aren’t money.
What you get: TWO FREE WORKSHEETS – one to help you start saving, and one to get you saving better than you already are.
I love peach season.
And this year has been a pleasure pandemonium (#fancywords).
The last few weeks I’ve been gorging myself on fresh peaches at nearly every meal.
And because my mind has no ability to structure itself, my peach fanaticism and my constant money thoughts have melded into two peach-related money metaphors I thought I’d share with y’all.
I hope you enjoy both of them, and the end of peach season.
What kind of peach lover are you? (and what does that say about your retirement?)
Are you a Brad… or a Taryn?
When it comes to peaches… I’m totally a Brad… but when it comes to money I’ve become much more of a Taryn.
Here’s the thing… the word ‘retirement’ has so much bullshit language and financial marketing built around it that I don’t even want to use it… but the principle is pretty important: when you have lots, put away some for ‘future you’.
But you know it’s not.
Personally, I would love to be the person who cans fresh peaches, and makes big batches of jam, but every time I think about it here’s what my brain throws at me:
I don’t know how
I don’t have the tools
I don’t really have time
Those are the exact thoughts I had when people were telling me to save money for ‘retirement’.
And yes of course there are tons of websites and resources exploring the ‘how’. And yes it’s totally possible for me to learn about making jam….
But let’s not pretend it’s ‘simple’.
There’s a lot of pre-work to do before I can feast on those sweet sweet winter peaches.
So… if you want to make sure that ‘future you’ has jam (or money)… there’s no other way. It’s not about not enjoying money in the moment. Enjoy it! But also think about how much ‘future you’ would enjoy it.
Eat a few peaches. Spend a few bucks. And then get to work learning how to save that incredible feeling for a cold winter day.
Yes it will be hard.
But I guarantee you won’t regret it.
What to do next…
If you like the idea of saving some ‘peaches’ for future you, here are a few things you can do this week to get you on your way (and they’ll only take a few minutes).
FOR SAVINGS NEWBIES: If you’re not saving yet, don’t worry too much about ‘making jam’… just focus on getting used to building a savings habit in the short term. Pick a goal, something that you need to spend money on in the next few months (but usually forget to set aside any cash for). Don’t make it too big, between $50 and $200. Take 5 minutes to fill out THIS WORKSHEET, and just focus on setting aside a few bucks for that one thing. It’s like cutting up a few peaches and freezing them in a ziploc, and I guarentee it will help start building the habit you need to be a savings pro.
FOR SAVINGS VETERANS: If you’re already a regular saver you’ve already got the habit part down. So, this week, I’m going to challenge you to take a hard look at your tools. Pick one account that you use to save. It could be an RRSP, a TFSA, or maybe just a regular savings account and do a little audit. You don’t need to be a finance expert, just follow along with THIS WORKSHEET, and make sure that your savings tool lines up with your savings goal.
Sometimes it looks like a peach… and it smells like a peach… but it’s really not a peach…
As most of you know, I live in Canada, and here in Canada we only get a few months of fresh awesome local vegetables before the snow comes and kills everything that’s worth loving to eat.
Hence my joy in peach season… those few weeks in a year when I can eat my favourite fruit.
But, you might say, surely I can buy them all year…
Yes, they are in my local grocery store all year… OR ARE THEY??????
Winter peaches are NOT peaches… but they’re kind of close. The consequences of being sucked into this lie are, luckily, merely a few moments of sadness and disappointment.
The same is true for money….
A credit card can be useful… but it’s not actually money.
So use it as a tool, like garnishing a cake with a few slices of a winter peach (and warning everyone not to actually eat it), but don’t get sucked into the lie.
Because the consequences of mistaking it for actual money can be much higher than just a moment of sadness.
It can really be the pits.
What to do next…
If you have some trouble with credit cards here’s something to keep in mind this week:
Whenever you see a sign that says something like “MasterCard/Visa accepted here” I want you to say to yourself (or out loud, if it doesn’t make you feel too crazy)… “Oh … they take debt here…”
And whenever you take out your credit card to pay for something, just say… “I am paying with debt.”
It’s a small thing, but that’s what it is. It’s not about judging, or saying that you should or shouldn’t use it… it’s just about making deliberate decisions instead of default ones.
A credit card is a great tool. It’s also debt. Try to remind yourself of that this week.
Don’t forget this week’s worksheets. Challenge yourself to get better with your money this week!
What’s your favourite peach recipe? … the correct answer is of course, pie… but I would love to have someone try to convince me otherwise…
Want to start getting control of your money? How can I help?
Financial Planner/Opera Singer
Money never came naturally to me. In fact… I was a bit of a disaster. I remember (very clearly) what it feels like to be ‘financially out of control’.
And honestly, I still get stressed about money… that doesn’t stop… the difference is that now I have the tools to deal with that stress.
And those tools are what’s made it possible for me to build a life full of the things I want: art, creativity, travel, family and more.