My coinstar monthly experiment!
In taking this tip to heart and me being me (adding my own spin to things) Money as a game. I play many games with myself as I live my experimental minimalist lifestyle.
(minus the quarters because those are for laundry and btw-the time I spend doing laundry has decreased by 90%. Which is a match for my life now and what I want to create. I have all of this time.) This is a fun way to give to charity and get egift cards too!!!!
HOW I PLAY THE GAME
My goal is always to have less than 10 dollars worth of change. Sounds odd right? To want the money number to be on the lower end? But I'm playing this game as an added way to feel good about being my word to myself, to keep track and mostly this whole thing started with my desire to feel into what money consciousness's belong to me, where I am in my own development, what is true for me, what works for me. As a part of my life as an experiment and as a part of eradicating all of the noise and meaning other people have for their money and what money means...for them.
I've been doing this pretty much since I've arrived here on the island...it's now an every day and once a month habit.
So now you have the context for todays experience....as this doesn't take up much time at all. I just float, give, use the machine, where I'm deciding on which three choices I want, I feel good when it's under 10 dollars and it's only been above 10 dollars one time (11 dollars) it's like a reverse slot machine excitement...or something...
I'm 5 dollars in when one person after the other gets in line. Instantly I felt a pinch o anxiety. I wanted to stop counting and just give her bills. But instead I just leaned into my anxiety to see what was there. Because often we can tell ourselves we are doing anything we do to -be kind to others and our anxiety is about - not wanting to hold up the line or other people's day but sometimes, our anxiety really stems from other things. And I like to know what those things are inside of myself.
I began to experience my urge to just whip my wallet out and give the cashier bills instead of continue to count my nickels and dimes to avoid being judged too, not just because I didn't want to hold up the line.
Since I was a child working up the street as a cashier, I have never cared or judged anyone for counting their change to pay for anything and I've never made it mean anything either. All of my first boss's who owned business's, their motto was always: "Money is money." It didn't matter to them if it was 200 pennies or 2 dollars, that was money in their pocket and the only proper response was "thank you for your business" and I agree so wholeheartedly, yet there I was... judging myself.
When I'm in line behind someone who is digging for change- If I have what they need readily available I will offer it. , even if they are wearing fancy labels and smell like Chanel #5. So I found it very interesting that I wasn't given myself the same natural reverence that lives inside of me with other people. I love when I catch myself doing the opposite of what I do for others.
Then I thought of one of my bosses... who had more money than god and he would be absolutely delighted when he found a penny on the ground or was at Sam's club and they gave away free food. He would joke and say he is taking his family out to dinner! Dinner is on me... "Come on, we're going to Sam's club to get the free samples! These sort of things tickled him a lot and because he was so funny about it, he made me laugh too. His way of being, his money consciousness...the humor and joy he got out of finding a penny on the ground... totally blows out a lot of those current new age theories on money consciousness and what you "need to do." to have more money...than GOD. All he did was build a business doing something he loved to do, he was good to people, made good financial investments, listened to those who knew more than him, and he enjoyed his life. That included acting like a child when he saw that penny or having fun when there was FREE FOOD. Money was a serious matter for him. Very important, yet, not at the expense of life as a game or having fun or being able to feel the joy a child feels over life's simple pleasures...
When I was done, I thanked the people behind me for their patience and the man directly behind me began to joke with me. He told me he was "this close" to saying 34, 35. Just to mess me up, I laughed and our banter was full of aloha just before I walked out...
When I walked out, my grocery bag was light as was my wallet.
AS the cashier was ringing him up he was still shopping. He just kept walking back and forth as we all stood there. He'd watch her and wait until she had just a few things left, then he'd move back into the store. When he did that she would have to wait because there is one register and they just changed to a computerized system where they are still trying to learn it themselves.
As he's doing this, the cashier is putting all of his items in an extra extra large brown paper bag. The line of people keeps growing too.
He finally completes his shopping, pays her and just when we think the line is about to move again...he just stands there and looks at her.
As her face turns a little more white, she's waiting for the telepathic message he's trying to send her to register....however telepathy hearing aid wasn't on. I'm pretty sure it wasn't on because he had her all flustered as it was and she could see the line of people growing behind him.
He points to the bag, grunts and shakes his head no.
He is saying no to: one big bag. He wants two smaller bags. And he's making all of these jesters with his body. The animated man...and just like that I'm laughing because now there are two people (owner and cashier) hurrying to take everything out of the one bag- to put it in two smaller and stronger bags.
As my laugh moves through the air, the cashiers begin to laugh. The man is still animated which made me laugh some more. And off he goes...Finally. That was a lot for sure.
I wasn't next in line. I was standing behind another fella. The other fella looks at me and says "please, a lady who laughs...should go first"
I said it's okay. I'm happy to wait... but he insisted.
EXPANDING MONEY CONSCIOUSNESS
You may know her from her co-authored books below
Our money, Ourselves-redesigning your relationship with money
Our Money, Ourselves-A new way of relating to money and each other
Dr Diane Ealy writes:
Our Money, Ourselves had its roots in my realization, many years ago, that I wanted to have a healthy relationship with money. My good friend, Dr. Kay Lesh, made the same decision. We also observed many women gathering information about how to invest their money who would then do nothing with it. We began teaching workshops to help women heal their emotional issues about money and regain their power over money. Our next step was writing about our experiences and discoveries.
SMOKE AND MIRRORS
The coinstar game is something that I like to do. It's fun for me to play in this way. I love using the machine, having the three choices of what I want to do and I never know which choice I'm going to make until I'm in the moment. I feel nothing but good in my game....except when I tried to play it a little differently due to the "OUT OF ORDER" sign, combined with the "Oh, look zero people, let me experiment!" Then all of a sudden, I needed courage..that was interesting.....
In my own space, I am the loveliest Hula dancer that ever existed. Put me on stage around complete strangers and I begin to shake. For everyone to see
In my money game, I am just moving effortlessly...flowing, playing, giving, and the under 10 dollar mark feels like I hit the lottery because it means something to me in terms of staying in alignment with my spending plan. Put me in line with a few strangers behind me and I begin to judge myself. And the only one who knows that is me. And well, now you...
And I am the QUEEN of, having a LOVE AFFAIR WITH MYSELF
Other times, anxiety teaches you what isn't necessary to put yourself or others through something. As much as I was tickled by the animated man, that isn't how I want to be. We all get to decide these types of things...
In that case, the lesson for me is: if the coinstar machine is out of order...just come back a different day...that's a simple one :) Some things are just unnecessary....
That's it for now..