Jenna: Hello, happy people, and welcome to Office ADHD. Hey, everybody, welcome back. Last weekend was a national holiday weekend here in the US. And if you're outside the US. You'd probably call it a bank holiday weekend. I was apparently not as prepared as I thought, so I apologize that we missed our episode last week. But hey, I'm back, so thanks for coming back. With me today I want to talk about ADHD and money. So an episode or two ago I'm trying to get which interview happened last mixed up. But we talked about people in the workplace, both people with Ad, and we kind of hit the whole ADHD autism similarity thing. Both groups were not very good with money, at least notoriously. I'm sure there are some of us out there that are like avid money managers and awesome at it, but historically, we are not very good at it. So you know what? Let us walk through this journey together and talk about some things. First off, why are we not good at this thing? And many of you may already know this, but one of the things is our impulsivity. We just love shiny things. Like last time you walked through the grocery store, how many new flavors did you want to put in your cart? Did you walk down the produce aisle and say, I have never seen a fruit that looks like that before. I might need to try it. Or there's things you see, things you get. Shiny object syndrome is kind of our life, and we want to take things home. Or you see, the next thing I know for me, I keep seeing things. I don't know if this is an ADHD thing or not. You guys will have to give me some feedback on that one, on this one. But I am very susceptible to sales techniques. I have had to learn as I've grown older to walk away and never buy something from a salesman. The first time they talk to me because I'm like, oh, you're right, I do need those knives. Woo. Because I'm going to be cutting ropes all the time. Because they show you it'll cut through a rope and it's like, wait, do I actually care if my knife cuts through a rope? How often does that come up? Anyway? Sure, it comes up a lot for some of you. I all of a sudden just thought of a ton of professions. But that's kind of our number one issue is shiny object syndrome. Our other issue is our minds, really. We tend to fight structure, which is the thing that we need. I can't explain it very well to people that don't understand it. So that's why I'm glad that you guys get this. It's like we know we need structure, but if we look at it as something boring, then we go, oh, why? It seems too tedious. So that's one of the things actually I wanted to talk about first with money. So I went through some different websites, looking at different things. I'm going to put them on the office adhd.com website so you can have all of the references that I'm going to talk about. But let's get into one of my first favorite ideas was reframing budget into a game. I was like, I never thought of doing it this way. So here's how they talked about it. So they said, don't think of the budget as this prison or this wall you're stuck into or this gate you're putting yourself in. Change it around so that the budget is a goal. So your prediction is saying, hey, I think that I'm going to spend this much money in this category. I'm going to spend this much on my mortgage, this much on food, this much on I need to save, this much for clothes, I'm going to spend this much on gas. Whatever things you're budgeting for, depending on where you're at and what you're doing, then it's a game to see if you can make your numbers right or if you can beat your numbers. So from then on, and if you track more, the more you keep track of where you're at, the better you are at winning this game. So the better you are at staying under your numbers and the more points you get. If you fill out your tracker every week, then it's kind of fun, right? So that's kind of tip number one, reframe how this looks. Next tip that I thought was really cool was the fact that bills come with a lot of papers and sometimes it's hard to know what papers to keep and what papers to toss. This isn't necessarily, I guess, so much strictly on money management. This kind of goes back to clutter, too. But part of it is that I know I have been way guilty of saying, okay, I know I need to remember to pay this bill later. I'm going to stack it in this one spot and then later I will come back to this stack all at once and we'll just go through these bills one at a time. And eventually that stack just becomes this huge clutter of papers that never goes anywhere. And eventually I have like three of the same bill there that I have either ignored or that I've paid somewhere else. Because you know how when you're still on not the paperless billing but you're on the paper billing, you'll pay it, but they've already got like three copies of whatever it is they're warning you about in the mail anyway, so that gets to be kind of a big mess. So stopping yourself and saying, okay, which of these can I access online and which of these do I actually need to keep the paper for? And even for your taxes and things later that you need to keep track of? Which of these can I just download a PDF and save it in a file on my computer and just shred the rest and put it somewhere. If you're worried about identity theft, hide it with that stinky diaper, put it under the gross leftovers or something you're putting out, spit on it, I don't know, and put it in the trash, rip it up really good. But the big thing is to try and keep that paper and clutter down. That'll also help you keep track of your bills. That's another thing that's and I've mentioned this before, there's a website I'm going to put up that talks about some different ways to manage your bills. So one of them talks about setting up a calendar so they say, okay, I've got these bills, X, Y, and Z, that come in every month. So I'm going to set in a calendar, and I highly recommend it be a calendar with alarms because we tend to need that extra alarm for help and maybe even more than one reminder. Did you know when you set things on especially I mean, I use the Google Calendar, it's kind of what I use, but there's a lot of different calendars. One thing that you can do is you can actually, when you see the little reminder bell, you can usually add extra reminders so that you can say, warn me a day before, warn me an hour before, warn me 30 minutes before, so that you can't just dismiss the alarm once and then never remember it again. So one thing that people do is they'll set alarms. They'll say, okay, my power bill is due the 15th of every month, so I'm going to set an alarm on the 10th so that I'll pay it and pick which day you're going to pay each of the bills throughout the month. And think about when you're paid and different things like that so that then you can set those times. And that also especially if you're paid, like, biweekly or even if you're paid especially if you're paid like, weekly or something. That'll help you space out when you're paying your bills and make sure they all get paid so that you don't feel like, oh, wait, now I have to pay everything with this one check, and then I won't have money to buy food. So that helps you space out, like I said, when you're paying them, or if you get paid once a month, then you mark down all of the bills you need to pay right then when you get paid so that you get that out first. That's one really cool method. The method I use, honestly, that has saved me is I have two bank accounts at two different banks. And this might be a lot for some people, and you just have to kind of keep track of it, is that I have one bank account where all of my bills that I know are coming every month are set on auto pay. Most of the ones that I set on the auto pay. There are ones that are the same every month. Like my cell phone bill is basically the same every month, or memberships to different things are the same every month. So I set all of those to my, quote, auto pay account, and then I have direct deposit for where I work, and I just set like, okay, this amount adds up to my monthly payment. If it's a monthly thing, then I get paid biweekly. So I just put half of that on my direct deposit, will go straight to that account so that I know that account is going to have enough to pay all of those bills. I don't see that money out of sight, out of mind. The bills pay themselves, and that has saved my life. I tell you what, it's amazing. Also, the cool thing about it is I always estimate over a little bit. Not a ton, but just a little bit. So it kind of builds up some savings for me, too, in a place where I don't think about it and I don't see it. Because one of the really big things you need to start doing, and I've seen this too, is even before you try and get out of debt, you need to build up an emergency savings a little at a time. So that when there's a small chance. The other day when I was taking my son to school, I may have made a really sharp turn and hit my tire on the curb and totally ripped a hole in my tire. And I had to buy a new tire for my car. There's different things that happen, and you need to suddenly have money to pay for them. Or somebody needs glasses, or somebody needs braces, or something happens and we all have these emergency things that come up. The dog swallows something and has to go to the emergency vet. It's nice to have that little pocket of money that's been kind of building up. And then I can say, okay, I can pull from this. You need to have that, otherwise your budget will always fail. So you need to have one place that's kind of building up that little emergency fund. All right, and let's talk about that impulse spending that I was talking about before to different people. This is a bigger problem. So some people this is a huge problem. And let's talk about some ideas that have really helped a lot of people get away from the impulse spending. One thing that helps me a lot personally is to have a goal, is to have something that I want to save up for. So either I'm saving up for a trip or maybe I want to save up for a certain pair of shoes or a new dishwasher. I don't know, something that you know you really want. And then anytime you're at the store and you're really feeling tempted, you say, to yourself, do I want the thing I'm being tempted about more, or do I want the thing I'm saving up for more? Would I rather spend $20 on this new random gizmo? Or would I rather put $10 when I get home into my savings for the chair that I really the chair of my dreams at my office? Yes, a gaming chair. One day. One day, everybody. That's kind of what I'm saying is that and then you have to allow yourself to have that goal. And then once you save up for it, then actually buy your goal and then save up for something else. Because it is important that you are spending things on things you want. Which is another really important point. You can't never buy things. You can't say to yourself, I will never ever buy that fun fuzzy thing. Because what happens is what happens to a lot of dieters. So a lot of people understand dieting a little better as far as some of these things go. So that's where I'm just going to use this example. It's like if somebody completely cuts out absolutely everything for a long time, then if they're feeling starved, then eventually they go and eat like five dozen donuts. Or they'll go and all they'll eat for the next five days is cookies once they stop their diet. And that's what we want to avoid with our spending. So what you should do though, is just plan that in. Say to yourself, it depends on how much money you earn. But say to yourself, I have $10 a week. I have $20 a week. And that is my fun money. I can spend that on whatever silly thing I walk past. If I want a random book, if I see something that looks fun and shiny and squishy or little fluffy thing that I just feel like I need to have in my pocket because it will be fun, then you're allowed that $10 or $20 and it's guilt free. That's the thing. You have to have given yourself permission to have that guilt free money and that's super important. So figure out how much guilt free money you can give yourself every week, even if it's just fifty cents and you get to pick a quarter machine somewhere, it doesn't matter. Give yourself an amount that is guilt free. Another thing that people have done is a couple of things is like they add up what they would have spent. So you go through the store and you say to yourself, okay, here's all the things that I would have bought. And then actually take out your little phone calculator and add up how much it would cost. And then say to yourself, do I really want to spend this much money? And then realize when you walk out, I just saved that much money. And if you're really tempted, get a buddy that you can call and you can say, okay, this leather jacket is on sale for this much money. I don't know if I'm ever going to see this sale again. Do I need this leather jacket? And they'll be the one that says you already have two leather jackets. You probably don't need a third. That's just an example. I don't actually have a leather jacket. Maybe one day. But that's one thing that helps a lot of people and another sneaky thing to me, or one thing that actually helps me a lot is ordering things online that you wouldn't maybe necessarily order online. So ordering groceries online and even if I pay the delivery fee, actually ends up saving me a lot of money because I get the chance to walk away from my cart, then come back to my cart and say, wait, which of these things am I actually going to eat? And which thing did I just buy because it was a really awesome sale or did I just buy because it looked good at the time and it gives me a chance to really plan. And I think one of the biggest things is I'm not always very good at adding up what things are going to add up to. When I'm walking through the store and I have my cart, I just say, oh yeah, we need some of this. Oh, that's probably good too. And I don't add up in my head how much everything is really going to cost and I keep that running tally. But if I have it all in a shopping cart on my web page, then I can look and say, oh, that's what this all added up to. I didn't mean to spend that much at the store today. So let me take a couple of things out. What things do I not actually what things can I live without? And it helps me stay within my budget because I can see it more visually. You can't necessarily do that with everything and it is good still to be around people. But it's really important to find ways to keep track of what you're spending. And that's one way that's really helped me. Whether, like I said, you go and pick up your groceries after you order them online or you go and, I don't know, have them delivered to you, whichever way you want to do it or anything like that, that helps you be able to walk away, which is another important thing, is when you're feeling that impulse by pull is to walk away. And then does our mind stay stuck on it? Or did your mind drift away and it really wasn't as important when you couldn't see it and you weren't in the same space as it is? Because shiny objects are shiny objects? And do we still remember it if we still remember it, like, three days later? Yeah, maybe we do need to go back and buy that thing. But if we don't, then, oh, maybe that thing wasn't really that important. Anyway, another really important thing for those of us with ADHD is to keep it simple. Those of you that are like fans of The Office, I just keep hearing Dwight say, Keep it simple. Stupid kiss. Anyway, sorry, that's what I hear in my head anyway. But keep it simple. Your budget and all of this planning for money, we get going. Great guns and we're like, Yay. I want to get everything down to the letter. I'm going to find the perfect program, I'm going to do all these things. It's going to be amazing. But it's really important that we keep our plan super simple if we're going to stick to it and if it's going to be something that we turn into a habit. Another thing is, like I said, you don't need to track or plan down to the last dime or down to the last five cents. You can say it's going to be about this much, it's going to be about this much. You can plan to the hundreds, to the tens, place it's fine. And just keep it kind of simple. Start somewhere. Starting somewhere is better than starting nowhere. And even if you can't start with a budget of saying, this is my goal amount, start with keeping track. Start by adding up by saying, okay, I'm going to search on my bank account for every Amazon purchase I'm going to search on my bank account for every purchase at the bookstore or something like that where you can say. I'm going to keep track of certain purchases and see how much I'm actually spending on some of these things so that you have that visibility. Because you can't change something that you don't see, you can't fix something that you aren't aware of. And as long as you're giving yourself that visibility once a week, twice a week, even, then you're going to get a lot better. And I also have to add on here on the website, I'm going to put a link to one of the silly, fun Saturday Night Live episodes. This is one of the ones that was actually funny in the morning because let's face it, sometimes the Saturday Night lives and the late night shows, they're funny because you're sleep deprived. And then if you watch them again in the morning, you're like, oh, I guess that was not funny. This one's still hilarious. It's all about don't buy stuff you can't afford and it's just funny. Love it. Anyway, we can do this together, guys. And if this episode gets a lot of listens, then I'll know that this is a topic you guys are interested in, so I will look for some financial experts to come and help us with some really awesome ideas. So that's why I let you know because I know that many of you are thinking about giving me more feedback. You're like, I really ought to leave a review. I really should send Jenna an email or leave a comment on her website, and you think about that while you're driving. And then when you actually stop somewhere, the thought goes away again. And then you listen to this again and you're like, wow, I should leave her a review. That would be amazing. I should send her some feedback, I should give her some ideas. Or I should just say hi. And then you remember that while you're in the shower. And obviously, electronics in the shower don't mix, so it's all right. I feel your vibes from the distance. But I will know, like I said, if there's a lot of listens, that this is an important topic to you guys. And I just also want to say I hope you guys are smiling, you're having an awesome day, and that you walk out that door knowing that the world is a good place and that you are a good fit for it and that you make it a better place just because you're in it. Talk to you next time. Thanks so much for listening. To learn more about anything we talked about today, head over to office adhd.com. Remember to, like, subscribe and share and have a great day. We'll see you next time.