How To Be Intentional with Your Money

Someone once asked me about financial freedom and how much does one need to sacrifice to achieve it? While thinking about her answer, I realised that she's complicated finances.

So I first explained to her what Financial Freedom is and she interjected, "But you have to make some sacrifices...?"

I told her no. Why? Because I learned long ago that it doesn’t have to be that way. I have been intentional about most of my life including my money decisions. The way I manage my money aligns with my values so I don’t mind spending and/or saving money in order to allow myself more time to do the things that I need to do for myself. That's intentional living.

I know that when I talk about “being intentional” with money, your thoughts turn to frugality (aka not spending) but the truth is the two don’t always go hand in hand.

Yes, you shouldn’t make mindless purchases but equally, you shouldn’t be afraid to spend your money on things that will add values to your life (within what you can afford).
“Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don’t.”
― Steve Maraboli
Do you believe that the only way to achieve financial freedom is by making major sacrifices to your finances? Unless you’re making minimum wage, you don't need to sacrifice. If you have a decent and stable job and are organised and prioritise well, you can learn to appreciate things more and experience delayed gratification as well.

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So how do you do it? I believe money should be fun, not stressful! And in order for that to happen, you’ve to have your feet on solid financial ground.  Here are three specific ways to help you be more intentional:

Be Intentional 
Nothing really great ever happens by accident — it’s always the result of planning, strategy, working smartly and having a clear vision. This is what they call “doing things intentionally,” and it can make a huge difference in the way you handle your money.First what is being intentional? Simply put it means to keep finding the courage to let go of things that no longer serve you (even when it goes against convention) and to pursue things that make you feel alive. It’s about knowing what you can and cannot control and taking responsibility for your life and happiness.
Learning how to be intentional with your money can make a huge difference in your journey to freedom. If you don’t have goals,  and plans for your finances, you can earn a lot of money and still find yourself broke at the end of the month.
Saving to be financially independent takes some serious intentionality. When you embrace intentional living, you can live on your own terms and create a life of meaning and purpose.

Determine your values.
Do some soul searching to find out exactly what you value. Clear answers to these questions are essential for good decision making. After all, how can you be intentional if you’re not clear about what you’re trying to achieve in the long run?  You don’t need to have everything figured out but you should have some idea about the direction you want your life to head in. The key here is what you truly desire – the life that you imagine for yourself that you have dreamed of! No matter what your values are, be confident in them. They are a part of who you are and should be reflected in what you do with your money. If you truly want to be financially stable and free, you need to have these conversations often. Make intentionality your habit.
The things that we do with our money are indications of what we value in life. 
We all have different values. What’s important is that you know what you value most. That way, you can intentionally use your money toward the things that are most important to you. Check out James Clear’s helpful list of 50 Core Values.

Have A Vision For Your Money
Financial Freedom has been the driving force in my decisions for most of my life and the reason why I started this blog. For me, freedom looked like being free of debt and having the freedom to use my money to fund future goals. It mattered because I wanted to start to build a legacy of my own and I knew that financial freedom would play a vital role in allowing me to have choices in the future, whether that was the choice to travel abroad with friends or the choice to spend time with my family.
Write your own financial vision for where you want to be a year from now, and why it matters. Your WHY will be your roadmap for being deliberate when you’re making financial decisions.

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As much as I wish there really was a magic genie that could make all of our financial dreams come true, that’s not reality. The reality is that you can live the life you want, but the real magic is in your ability to handle money wisely. Like I said before, nothing really great ever happens by accident. And if you learn to handle money intentionally, you’ll see really great rewards in the future.

It's time you go boldly in the direction of the life you want to live.

So now I’d like to hear from you: What’s your biggest “money purpose.”