On April 30, I ended my Transaction Cleanse, a personal spending experiment proposed by Carl Richards on his Behavior Gap podcast. Mr. Richards challenged listeners to see how long we could go without making a single transaction. The concept: “to reset and increase our awareness” around spending. Actually reducing expenses is not an explicit goal of doing a cleanse, but (spoiler alert!) it is likely to be a welcome side effect. Read the article...
In traditional budgeting, the goal is to identify and track living expenses, reduce where appropriate, and then target future spending to that reduced amount. This frees up cash for saving or investing on an ongoing basis. Easier said than done, as many might point out! But when it does get done, it can be very powerful, especially if done consistently over time. Why not try something similar with the cash freed up as part of a Transaction Cleanse?
Supermarket holiday plants are the bridesmaid dresses of the gardening world. Buyers convince themselves they can find a way to extend the item’s use beyond the event in question, but deep down, they know they’re looking at a one-hit wonder.
There I was, a spring in my step as I went to get the mail. Little did I know, but another Transaction cleanse Lesson awaited. (They seem to lurk everywhere.) There, tucked in amongst the bills, magazines, and useless solicitations, lie a deal that was actually worth something. Fresh off my "50% off Easter candy" Personal Finance for Dumb Bunnies lesson, my initial plan had been to toss out all the sales flyers lock, stock, and barrel.
But something caught my eye
Transaction Cleanse or not, sometimes it's hard to fight your natural instincts. Like the talking dog in Pixar's movie "Up" whose attention is instantaneously and thoroughly diverted from what he is saying upon spotting a squirrel, I recently found myself similarly sidetracked. At the time of the incident, I was in a hurry and very much focused on the important task at hand: procuring a gelato to redress a heinous dessert wrong that had been perpetrated against me.