In my last blog post, I talked about 7 ways people who are disorganized end up losing money more money than their neurotypical peers. Since this is such a big topic, this week I’ll be writing about even more ways how disorganized people are financially “taxed” for their disorganization.
Planning is an executive function, and many people who are disorganized have trouble with executive functioning skills. It can be hard to plan out in advance what foods you’ll want to eat for the week, and how much to buy. When you’re disorganized, you’re likely to find yourself at the grocery store while you’re hungry. When you go shopping hungry, chances are, you’ll purchase way more than you need, and a lot of it will go bad before you have a chance to eat it. Something else that happens when you go shopping hungry is impulse buying of junk food. I purposely avoid certain grocery stores due to how they market their junk food. Whenever I shop at Safeway, I almost always come out with something I regret. While it’s not a good idea to be overly ridged about your diet (unless you absolutely must for health reasons), consuming lots of junk food on a regular basis is going to make your make your disorganized habits much worse.
Decision making can be really hard for people that are disorganized. Having trouble making decisions can really contribute to disorganization. For example, if you’re someone who has trouble making decisions, you might have a hard time deciding where to store something or knowing what to do with a pile of mail. Think back to the last time you had to get a gift for someone. Did you buy it early and send it so that you didn’t have to pay for expediated shipping? Or did you hem and haw until the last minute, and then have to pay big bucks to overnight the gift?
When you take the time to do things like get your oil changed in your car, properly care for leather goods, and do routine maintenance on your home, your things will last a lot longer. If you buy something and then never do the things you need to do to keep it working well for a long time, you’re going to have to buy a new one more quickly. Doing this type of maintenance takes organization though! You’ve got to know what to do, when to do it, and then you’ve got to make the time to do it. Creating a system to keep track of all of this information can be quite challenging. In addition to material objects, doing the things to keep your body in tip-top shape will also save you money in the long run. Unfortunately, a lot of important preventative medical care is not paid for by insurance companies. Do your future self a favor and invest in your health today.
Tax time is usually stressful for everyone, but it’s especially stressful for people who are disorganized. This is because they probably have not kept accurate records, or don’t know where their records are. This may lead to needing to pay more than was expected, or having to pay other types of fines.
Many disorganized people have anxiety about money. They may have had trouble managing it in the past, have had trouble saving, or have had trouble doing the things necessary to hold a well-paying job.
Having an anxiety about money leads to a “lack mindset”, and breeds a lot more fear around spending. It’s always a good idea to get really happy before doing any kind of financial transactions- paying for something at the store or online, opening financial mail, doing online banking, or any other money related activity. Think about something that really makes you happy, and let your mood elevate before doing anything related to money. Otherwise, if you do money related activities while you’re feeling really fearful, stressed, or feeling like you don’t have enough, you will be creating more experiences to prove that you should be stressed about finances. Fear based thoughts will have a ripple effect on your bank account.
In what ways have you had to pay extra or have your earning abilities been limited due to your organization? Please share in the comments!
By Jean Prominski, Certified Professional Organizer
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