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Four years ago one of the first articles I was asked to write was about money mindset. And let me tell you, I gave it one big old eye roll.

Honestly, I thought money mindset was a joke. A sham. If there wasn’t real data and studies on it, it must not exist.

To me, money was just numbers. You save, you invest, and eventually, you retire. The numbers work and that’s all there is to it.

Guys, I was wrong.

I have done a full 180 – we both have – with our money mindset. This is such a hard one to talk about because it’s not concrete. There are no numbers. There’s nothing to say that we’re right or wrong or will change our mindset in the future.

And funny enough, we don’t talk about this with any of our friends. We talk about it a lot with each other.

We’ve come a long way, but we still have a long way to go. But we want to put this out there in case anyone is starting to think about their money mindset and how that relates to how they manage their money. And the things they do in life.

I had heard things like, “make your money work for you.” But I always assumed that meant “make your money work for you someday in retirement.”

Over the past few years, we’ve done a lot of reading about money. Some great books. Some terrible books. Some that literally spoke to me so deeply they’ve left a long lasting impression.

In this podcast, we walk you through some of the moments – quotes and experiences – that have shifted our perspective on money. It’s the “ooooh I never thought of it like that” moments.

This is how we looked at money before:

  • Save to spend. Save to spend. Work, work, work. Buy, buy, buy.
  • You work hard, to earn more money, to buy more things.
  • Bigger house, bigger car. Debt is a fact of life. You will always have a mortgage.
  • There was a lot of worth tied up in paycheck size, title, company.
  • There is a track, you stay on it, and you don’t get off.
  • There is one way to do things.

We focused on getting jobs that would pay well right out of college so we could start our own work, work, work, buy, buy, buy journey.

This is sad but I remember calculating my spending money and put it in context of what I could buy –  “I can buy a pair of jeans and a sweater every month.”

Now we are shifting our money mindset. We discuss the following five shifts.

Shift #1: Those are old stories

  • You need to buy a house and a mortgage is a fact of life
  • Save 20% for retirement – this is an arbitrary number!

 

Shift #2: You don’t have to save to spend

  • The treadmill of the save, save, save, buy, buy, buy mentality
  • You don’t have to be dependent on one source of income.  There are a lot of ways to make money, we had been stuck on one

 

Shift #3: What’s with all this stuff?

  • When we realized that we needed to pay attention to what we bring into our lives
  • “The cost of a thing is the amount of what I call life which is required to be exchanged for it,” – Henry David Thoreau

 

Shift #4: Think in terms of possibilities.

  • Start seeing, feeling, and thinking that there were endless possibilities.
  • But this can be really hard to do. Everywhere you turn there is a lot of fear.

 

Shift #5: Money can buy you freedom

  • We are not talking about FIRE (financial freedom, retire early)
  • “Money can buy you valuable things and the most valuable of them is freedom.”
  • Redefine the term with part-time work or taking a break or transition to a different career.

 

Takeaways

  • Our money mindset shift was gradual, we are talking years. Your money mindset isn’t set in stone as we thought it was, it is dynamic.
  • Think about your money mindset to figure out how it is impacting your thinking, money, and life – reset your defaults
  • This isn’t a free for all to spend your money. It is an opportunity to do something more with what you have.

 

Make it Good

Our first night away from Henry was spent reliving our old life in London. We did our favorite activities – rented Boris Bikes, walked through Hyde Park and our old neighborhood, and jumped into museums to geek out on dinosaur and whale bones.  We also share some tips for eating in London.

A big thank you to the grandparents for letting us have a wonderful and memorable weekend!

Here’s our happy Henry enjoying the swing we got him for his first birthday. We’re making memories over here, people!

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It’s time to live a life that’s better than fine.

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Every Friday we bring you a roundup of the most interesting stories, things to learn, and ways to be smart with your money. Sent straight to your inbox.

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