Do you ever notice when you leave your credit card at a bar (like I did last Friday!) or lose it for a bit of time that you are forced to think about each payment a bit more closely? It’s so easy to just swipe away and not even think about where the money is going or how much is racking up. It would be a fun money exercise to leave your credit card and debit card at home and just try to use the money you have in your wallet to get by for a week.
In my book, I Heart Money, I write about how it’s easy to swipe all our money away with plastic, vs. having to part with an actual precious commodity like cash, gold, etc.. When we swipe away with plastic we are removed from the thousands of years of transactions where something precious was exchanged for some other good or service. Swiping plastic takes away that feeling of loss you get when you hand over your hard earned cash. So let’s all use cash next week and this is how you are going to do it…
We are going to all leave our cards at home and compare to see how much you save vs. using plastic.
1. Put the cards in the fridge or somewhere you’ll remember them.
2. Calculate all of the costs you’ll need to have cash for like transit, dinner out, birthday presents, etc. and then only take that amount out for the week.
3. Build in a bit of a buffer for an emergency latte (we all know we have to have money for one of those) or something else like a cab.
4. Plan out how you will say no to fun outings, movies or other spontaneous fun stuff that comes up (Maybe book yourself in the gym all week if it’s already paid for)!
When you reach for your empty card slots you’ll remember that you only have so much money to pay for what you planned for and you’ll figure something else out. You’ll have to walk home, eat in or drink work coffee and it’ll be ok. We’ll have a ton of money sitting in our account at the end of the week and it’ll make it all worth it. I’m going to leave my card at the bar this week and see how much I can save again.
Forget your cards at home this week and profit!