How I incorporate mindfulness into my daily routine & make my money-making journey less stressful & more purposeful
With the prevalence of social media, it’s not easy to remain composed and not panick when I read about how people younger than me have attained jaw-dropping milestones earlier than me. $100k before 30 years old, anyone? But as my mum used to say, “Don’t be a slave to money”, I think it’s imperative that we recognise that our money journey is unique, reconcile with the fact that there will always be many others who are earning more than us, and realise steps to own our idiosyncratic journey. Here’s how I try to be fully present in my life and resist the urge to be consumed by the happenings around me. After all, we all should live in the now and embrace the Joy Of Money.
1) Connect With My ‘Why’
Working life these days is hectic and fast-paced, with many of us being expected to multi-task and respond quickly to unforeseen circumstances and unexpected demands. This can easily tire the best of us as we find ourselves reacting to developments rather than exhibiting full control and fulfilling our life’s purpose.
I am lucky enough to be in a job that I enjoy. Maybe it’s the beginning of a new year which brings about a renewed vigour to start things afresh, but these days, I keep reminding myself of the reason I chose teaching in the first place: to make a difference in the lives of young people.
And these days, I make an effort to carve 1-to-1 time with one student every day, be it coaching him/her in reading or finding out more about his/her family. It doesn’t take up much time, really - let‘s say 10-15 minutes - but it has made me more secure and grounded than I expected. Even if other people are making more money than me, I am contented about my humble efforts to make a difference and remain rooted to the idealistic lad in me who chose a helping profession all these years ago.
This emotional boost has got to count for something. Psychic currency, while not valued as favourably as real money, does matter. My job allows me to make a difference in a way that fills my heart’s desire. So, when I have little qualms about undertaking my job, I find that I have more life energy to devote towards other pursuits (such as writing Seedly Opinions pieces, heh).
Thus, I am a Mindful Earner.
2) Say ‘Thank You’ When Money Flows In And Out
Among all the money-related books that I have read so far, "Happy Money" by Ken Honda stood out because it inspired me to apply one of his methods in my life. Apparently, he says "argiato gozaimasu" whenever money flows in and out of his possession.
Prior to reading his book, I occasionally spent quiet moments soaking in the bliss of the moment whenever I received income. However, I was never so big-hearted to express thanks whenever I had to fork out for something, especially when it was an unexpected expense for stuff like electrical appliances. In fact, I would feel quite moody because my tendency was to hoard as much money as I could.
Suffice it to say that his method was a paradigm shift because it got me to see that the ability to pay for something was a blessing. I was lucky enough to have enough rainy day funds to safeguard me against the curveballs that life threw at me. Instead of lamenting about the need to spend, I could and should focus on the satisfaction derived as a result of my ability to provide for my family.
Expressing thanks for the inflow of money into my life was more intuitive. I firmly believed in the Law of Attraction and felt that uttering an actual thanks would help me get acknowledged by the Universe. This should help me evolve to be a Money Magnet!
Yes, I say "arigato gozaimasu" whenever money comes in and out of my life. It just makes me feel more appreciative of my moments, somehow.
Thus, I am a Mindful Spender.
3) Spread My Money Knowledge
This is where I have a confession to make. Many finance books recommend that we contribute part of our income to charity, for we should use money as a tool to support the causes that we deem worthy and uplift the less privileged people in our society. However, I only contribute sporadically to charity because my tendency is to hoard as much as money as I can.
In this case, how else can I make a contribution to society? If I am somewhat reluctant to part with money, then perhaps I ought to channel some time and energy into undertaking some form of volunteer work.
So this desire to get myself involved in volunteering led me to sign up as a volunteer with the Central Provident Fund earlier this year. I thought it would be a great idea to marry my newfound interest in money and desire to help people so that I would actually feel excited about volunteering my service.
Being action-oriented, I sent out an e-mail to my entire organisation that came with a tantalising idea: AMA CPF. So I borrowed Seedly's idea about AMA sessions (https://seedly.sg/community/topic/ama-the-investquest) and offered to step up as a CPF Volunteer!
The response was better than I had expected. 4 people approached me today and expressed interest in finding out more about CPF. And because it was a topic I was greatly interested in, I felt invigorated about their questions.
Thus, I am a Mindful Giver.
How do you incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.