Tag Archives: Parenting

Not Spending A Cent For A Day

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in March 2014 issue.

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Many times I have had people ask me how I manage to save money to travel, to do various activates and go to concerts. Most of them are in the same boat as me with big mortgage, ever-rising cost of living in Sydney and working average paying jobs. I hadn’t given it a thought until recently so here is my answer.

First and foremost you need to have the willingness to save money. Everyone wants to win a 50 million lotto and take their life from there but that is not going to happen with most of us so one must mentally prepare oneself to save money. It is easy to spend it but very hard to save it.

Second thing is willingness to do things. In Nepali there is a proverb, “Ta aat ma puraunchhu” which translates to you try and I will make sure you succeed. Unless and until you try to do something how will you know if you can or can’t do that. It is better to fail after trying than never attempting at all.

After that it’s all about being disciplined and sticking to the plan. Here are some simple tips I follow to get my saving in line:

  • Make a list of things you want to do in writing and pin that somewhere visible. Seeing something in writing everyday will encourage to reach your goal.
  • Make a note of every spending, even for 20 cents and put that in an excel spreadsheet.  Look at the incomes and expenses and see where you can cut down. This will give you a clear idea of your finance rather than just assumptions. Do this for at least a month.
  • Looking at the excel sheet, you will realise that food/grocery is one of the biggest spender apart from rent/mortgage so be smart while buying groceries. Plan your meals ahead and make a list so nothing goes to waste. Never waste food and never comprise on food quality. You won’t enjoy your saving if you have poor health.
  • Takeaway lunches are quick but they are not healthy and they make a big hole in your wallet. Try to take lunches from home and treat yourself with takeaway occasionally.
  • If you are a heavy coffee or soft drink drinker, check how much you are spending a day on your drinks. You will be surprised how much that amounts to in a year. If you can’t live without your drinks look for cheaper alternative like making your own espresso or buying cold drinks in bulk.
  • It is tempting to buy on impulse when shopping so make a budget and stick to it while you are in malls. It is easy to ignore the budget when you fall in love with the perfect dress that you have been looking for months but remember that dress you loved so much will still be around next week. And what are you going to do with the dress if you can’t afford your next planned holiday.
  • If you are saving for holiday, house, wedding, kids’ education, put aside a certain amount each month/ paycheck in a separate account and never touch this money.
  • Always have emergency money and never use it unless it is a real emergency. Staying so far from our family, you never know when you will need that.
  • Try to experiment just once for a whole day not spending a cent. Take lunch and snacks from home to work and do not buy anything. At the end of the day think about it and realise that you just made XX amount working whole day and not even a cent was spent. Isn’t that a great feeling? Don’t you want to have that feeling more often? I do. 🙂
  • By following these tips, you are not becoming a miser but being money smart. 

The most important thing to remember is: don’t stop living your life because you want to save money. You live only once so no point having millions in your bank account when you die. At the same time, you don’t want to be careless with your money that you have to struggle when you retire.

Good luck and HAPPY SAVING!!!

Patience is a virtue

This article was published in +977 (a Nepalese Lifestyle Magazine in Australia) in September 2013 issue.

977 blog

I am sure all of you have heard this phrase many times in your life. A wise man once proclaimed, “All good things come to those who wait.” This is taught to us from a very young age at home by our parents as well as in school by our teachers. The ability to wait for something or someone without being angry or upset is a good and valuable quality.

In the modern world, it feels like everything moves at a million miles per hour and patience is the first thing thrown out of the window. And living in this modern world, I hated waiting for things too. I was like most people who wanted thing done now and moved on to the next task.

The troubling thing about impatience is that it caused me a lot of stress.  I constantly felt like I was left behind, and that I should have accomplished so much more.  This feeling led me to becoming upset with myself, and I acted out by not getting anything done.  The impatience that had kept me going throughout my life was failing me and I was miserable about it.

Then things changed when I got married. It’s no surprise to anyone that getting married will change a person and for me it changed me to be a better person.

My husband is super patient man and being married to him and knowing him better taught me that patience could be blessing. Seeing him less stressed in same situation we both are in and at the end accomplishing the same result, I wondered why was I so stressed. We are still working to come to middle ground so we both are in the same pace but he has definitely taught me how not to get too stressed. I know that being patient will make me happier and I am learning to be patient with people and situations I care about. Slowly but surely I am getting there. I began to have more time to spend in the moment that I was in.  I had less of a worry about the next step and I was able to focus more on the task at hand than I ever had been able to before.

Definitely, Patience is a skill that we all must learn.

Honestly, all of us have become really impatient because of the advances in technology. People now can get access to information much faster than people in previous generations could and still they are impatient when they have to wait even a few minutes.

How many times do you refresh your inbox when you are waiting for an email? We live in a society of instant gratification these days and we want everything thing now. We are not willing to have the patience to wait for those things that we desire. Imagine the olden days when communication was done using carrier pigeon or using our favorite postman. Then we were OK to wait months or days for a message while we can’t even wait a few minutes these days without getting annoyed.

How many of us get annoyed waiting more than a few seconds for a website to load? We have already forgotten in the last few years that, internet used to be dial up once and we had to wait for minutes in some cases for webpages to load. Moreover, we were OK with that then.

I am very frustrated by the drivers in Sydney for sure. They are so impatient and really think they own the road so they drive without thinking. The worst part is that they are not only endangering their own life but also people around them.

I also don’t understand the impatience of parents pushing prams or holding hands of young kids while jaywalking, and not using the pedestrian crossing to cross the road. Seriously, what kinds of parents expose their child to such a danger just to save few minutes? In addition, what kind of education they are giving their young children? I am sure walking a few minutes further to a proper pedestrian crossing would have cost them nothing.

We all have encountered people who have no patience at all and ruin the day for everyone around them. I had such an encounter the other day.

I went to subway to buy my lunch. I was behind a woman in the queue. There were two people before her in the queue and two girls serving. Normally the lines in subway are pretty organised as you start ordering at one end and you just follow the flow. So when the customer service girl asked the woman in front of me what she liked, as she was next in line suddenly, the guy on the other side just burst and said,” What the F*** is this? I am in line before her?” All of us were a bit surprise because he just raised his voice and started swearing and he was not even standing in the proper queue.

The poor girl behind the counter had no idea that he was waiting. He could have said the same words in a polite manner instead of shouting. Seriously, his sudden outburst didn’t make him a hero instead we all thought he was a looser to be taking out his anger on a poor girl just doing her job. I am sure nothing in this world would have changed if he was served after that lady. That was definitely one impatient man.

With the fast pace of life, it is easy to see why so many people are impatient. I know many will argue that many people are impatient because they are just born that way. But as with any bad habit, we need to work on it so we change it to be a better person. Each person is responsible for their actions. So please take a second and think about this next time you run out of patience.

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