Herding Cash


If you’re like me, some of the transactions you are NOT making during the Cleanse are simply delays.  But others are items or services you will never end up buying.  There was a time and a place for that purchase, and once it has passed, the money simply won’t be spent.  What if, just like traditional budgeting, you capture the value of this non-transaction by saving or investing it towards some cherished goal, instead of letting it get absorbed back into the pool to be spent?

For example, if I had been able to resist that chocolate sauce-covered scoop of Bailey’s ice cream I bought on Sunday, that would have been ~$5 not spent. Today, I decided to change the flat tire on my bike instead of coming up with some excuse to let the bike shop do it.  Estimated savings (even after I blew a tube testing it – doh!): $20. Small potatoes?  Maybe, but if I took the sum of all the things not bought over this month (many!), I could estimate a surplus in my account, which should then be available to save or invest instead of getting lost in the ether (read: spent) like this kind of money usually does. 

Granted, this might be a bit cumbersome for a long term strategy, but every little bit counts and it is yet another great way to increase money awareness. Plus, it sure would be a nice little bonus for a Transaction Cleanser. Even better, it might inspire you to free up some surplus cash on an ongoing basis and set up a simpler system for capturing it before evaporates.