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Mindfulness and money; "You can afford anything"; Shareholder's revenge; Back to school; Women hold the key

Posted in Personal Finance

By Amanda Morrall

This morning I came across a question via twitter that beckoned to me to answer. It was as follows: "What word describes when you're thinking about someone you haven't seen in an age, and then they call you?"

I shot back with "sychronicity" a term coined by philosopher Carl Jung to describe the relationship between two seemingly unrelated events that have an interpretable meaningful connection. Western minds would call it coincidence

Call it what you like, I'm sure most of you have some experience of this.

I found it ironic because just last evening I was having a DAM (deep and meaningful) conversation with a good friend about meditation and its benefits.

There are many different forms of meditation and techniques as well. One of them is mindfulness meditation which isn't so much an altered state that you try to achieve so much as a more heightened state of awareness about what is it you are doing and thinking about from moment to moment with the idea of doing it more purposefully, passionately and with a greater presence of mind.

Incidentally, I talk about mindfulness in my book Money Matters as an important tool in personal finance. Why?

Because when it comes to financial wellbeing (which is just a component overall well-being) it's infinity improved by making careful, well-considered thoughtful decisions that involve money (directly and indirectly) on everything from transportation to homes, holidays, haircuts, hobbies, and even retirement savings funds.

With greater mindfulness, we are likely (not always) to make better decisions because we have reflected on a broader spectrum of issues beyond simply cost and immediate gratification.

1) Mindfulness

With more on the power we have to make well informed decisions that improve our bottom line, check out this blog by the simpledollar.com.

And also some interesting new research on the benefits of meditation; one from yogadork.com (don't let the name scare you) and another from psychcentral.com.

2) Afford anything

"You can't have everything but you can afford anything." It's a quote from a personal finance blogger, former journalist, entrepreneur and investor Paula Pant whose website I stumbled across this morning.

It's something worth reflecting on. Pant argues that more directed and also mindful spending (and saving) will get us where we want without having to scrimp and save and toil at a rubbish jobs for years.

She raises some good points in her blog so I'm linking to it today.

3) Going back to school

Many of us, when we reach a crossroads in our careers or get bored on the job or hit middle age, think about going back to school.

In some cases, it's a worthy and necessary pursuit, but not always. Food for thought on going back to school for that MBA or second degree from the Harvard Business Review via the Globe and Mail newspaper.

4) Shareholder advocacy

As most of my regular readers know by now, I'm a yoga nut and one my retail weakness is Lululemon.

The multinational yoga apparel designer, whose stock prices have soared since the company went public, is renown for having a great corporate culture and for being one of those jolly good karma corporate citizens.

Interestingly, this recent debacle having to do with a recall of see through yoga pants (which could slap US$60 million off Lulu's otherise plump profits) has enraged shareholders invested via Hallandale Beach Police Officers and Firefighters’ Personnel Retirement Fund.

The fund is suing over Lululemon executives being awarded big fat bonuses this year by their board.

It won't stop me from buying their products (or from teaching there for free this Sunday in Ponsonby) however this is an excellent example of shareholder advocacy at work. More here from yogadork.com.

5) Women hold the key

Warren Buffett sees reasons for optimism about America's economic future. Why?

In one word women. USA today carries the highlights of an editorial he wrote for Fortune Magazine extolling the benefits of girl power now that other 50% of the nation's potential is being tapped more earnestly. 

Like what you've read? You'll enjoy the book better. Here's how to order a copy of Amanda's book Money Matters: Get your Life and $ Sorted. The book is also available in ebook format as well via Amazon and is replete with hyper links to help you get your finances in order. 

You can also follow Amanda on Twitter @amandamorrall; check out her previous Take Fives here; Find out what she's up on on her own blog here.  

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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1 Comments

And what pray, is wrong with

And what pray, is wrong with see-through Yoga pants?