Don’t Let Yourself Overthink Small Money Decisions

Don’t Let Yourself Overthink Small Money Decisions

It’s important to make conscious money decisions — but there’s a difference between being mindful and being indecisive. As Carl Richards of the Behaviour Gap explains, we often overthink otherwise simple money decisions, and this can be wasteful.

Photo by anna gutermuth

Not only is it a waste of time to overthink simple decisions, it can be a waste of money, too. Richards uses the classic example of driving around to save money on petrol by finding a price that's lower. Between your time spent and fuel consumed, you probably spend more than you save.

Instead of overthinking these decisions, Richards suggests you make the decision once, then let go of it. For example, find a relatively cheap petrol station, and resolve to go to that one regularly. Then, stop thinking of the fact that you might be able to find five-cent-cheaper petrol somewhere else. In his post, Richards explains that it's all about finding financial balance:

Always make it a point to discuss, plan and, if needed, save. Then, when you spend, embrace the knowledge that you've done the work beforehand so you know it's money well spent. It's a small thing that can mean the difference between finding financial balance or being trapped in financial misery.

Saving money is great, but not when it costs more than it's worth.

Letting Go for Financial Balance [Behaviour Gap]


  • I gave up lining up for cheap petrol years ago and it was awesome. I did the maths and I was only saving a dollar or 2 each week to worry about finding the best petrol station. Spending $2 a week extra is worth not stressing.

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