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Summer is all about cleansing.  We cleanse our skin, faces and bodies, but we often forget about our wallets.  A money cleanse provides the same incredible benefits as other types of cleanses, but the end result is slightly different.  In addition to feeling confident and happy, a money cleanse helps you save more, feel more satisfied when you spend and maximize your happiness per dollar.


What is a money cleanse?

A money cleanse is similar to a juice or food cleanse in that you shake up your routine by cutting out all frivolous spending.  You only spend money on items classified as needs and in all cash for seven days. It’s important to note that the definition of needs is different for everyone.  

The first exercise in my 30-Day Money Cleanse is to define what frivolous spending means to you.  Creating these guidelines can be tremendously eye opening as you become conscious of where your money is going and discover things you can easily live without.  So how does this help you?

Break your spending cycle

Getting out of your daily routine is helpful in breaking bad habits.  Something that felt unthinkable to give up feels surprisingly easy and (like a food cleanse) after the third day you develop an incredible calm and peace in regards to money.  Every day you’re consuming and purchasing, and even with inexpensive items, there can be a spending high and impending guilt and second-guessing that comes with each purchase.  Have you ever run out of the office to pick up lunch, got carried away and grabbed lunch, a cookie, the fancy drink and snacks for later?  In the moment you’re excited but later you think, ‘I didn’t need all of this, what happened?’  It happens all of the time.  A money cleanse allows you to break this cycle and spend from a calm and intentional place.

Become conscious of your spending

During a money cleanse, I tell my clients to keep a money journal to write down all of their spending.  Nothing is too small to include!  It’s very eye opening to write down every purchase as well as notice how you feel before and after each purchase.  I work with clients on creating budgets all of the time and rarely does anyone spend what they thought.  Often we have a warped view of our spending and it’s almost impossible to change our habits if we don’t know the truth of our spending habits.

Learn the opportunity cost of your spending

Every time we earn money, we have the opportunity to allocate that money in ways that will maximize our happiness - short and long-term.  Whenever we spend money, we forgo the opportunity to spend it on or invest it in something else.  When we re-frame our view of spending, it doesn’t feel as if we’re sacrificing when we make smarter spending decisions, rather we’re actually providing ourselves with the opportunity to use our funds in ways that make us happier.  It’s much more powerful to choose to spend your money elsewhere than to say, ‘I can’t afford it.’


Whenever we spend money, we forgo the opportunity to spend it on or invest it in something else.


If you’re feeling like it’s time to face your spending fears and maximize your happiness with the money you have, try a money cleanse.  If you want more support and a formalized curriculum, join my 30-Day Money Cleanse program starting September 1st!


Ashley Feinstein is a certified money coach and founder of Knowing Your Worth, where she empowers her clients to live at the source of financial freedom by creating budgets that maximize happiness, reaching their financial goals, paying down student loans and other debt and increasing their credit scores. Find out more, check out her blog and follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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