EMERYVILLE, Calif., Aug. 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- What can Zen Buddhism, a practice based on nothingness, say about managing household finances? Central to Zen is the idea that wanting and desiring lead to bitterness and disease. When individuals crave things such as a car, a vacation, shoes, even another person, they are unhappy until they acquire it. Or, even if they do get it, they are onto the next thing and are often still unhappy even though they have it. Zen can be helpful in making an honest assessment of wants and needs, and income and expenses. Financial Education Benefits Center (FEBC), a membership benefits company, offers financial planning and assistance resources to members interested in better understanding their financial health.
"Our clients employ many ways to fully understand where they stand financially and where they are going," said Jennifer Martinez, manager at FEBC. "We encourage all our members to find a way to organize their finances, develop a plan and stick to it."
To understand money, individuals need to better understand themselves. Asking, "Do I need this thing right now?" is incredibly important, and the difference in meaning between want and need is great. If the answer to the question is no and the "thing" is not bought or pursued, then emotional and financial resources have been saved and desire has been curbed.
Also, according to Zen, the main reason individuals desire things is because they want to calm an uneasiness or resolve an anxiety residing at the bottom of their wants. Irrational buying choices often arise out of these unnamed fears, despite the anxiety persisting even after the purchase. Becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable allows individuals to make more intentional choices about allocating resources. Even if fear is at the base of something beneficial, saving for retirement, for example, realizing that fear of being alone or disempowered can interfere with the process. Zen allows for slowing down, making a long-term plan and sticking to it.
Letting go of the past and future, stepping into the moment, is also central in Zen. Being stuck in every moment but the present makes difficult, challenging events impossible to navigate. Challenges are everyday occurrences. So, when a student loan payment is due, when the car breaks down, when work hours are cut back or when an unexpected sickness is encountered, focusing on the present allows an individual to ride out emotional swings and make the best choices possible under harsh circumstances. Rather than anger and depression, two of the most likely responses to being fearful and un-present, the response to adversity can be as healthy and productive as possible.
Shizen is the Zen concept of individuals presenting themselves to the world as their true selves, without pretense. Financially, this means ignoring the desire to try and live beyond one's means and buying only what can be afforded. This honesty also means fully understanding how much money individuals have, unafraid of the truth. Budgeting, especially by those under duress, is an excellent first step and allows individuals to fully grasp income and expenses, allowing honest decisions about spending. Financial Education Benefits Center offers household budget spreadsheets, budget planners, monthly bank reconciliation worksheets and personal financial statements, allowing members to make a full assessment of their finances.
"Though Zen is an excellent way of understanding finances and seeing clearly a way forward based on honest and thoughtful decisions, this is just one of many ways," said Martinez. "Our resources, in addition to a philosophy or plan that works for you, will hopefully help you live a financially healthier life, whichever way you choose."
About Financial Education Benefits Center
Financial Education Benefits Center is located in San Ramon, California. The membership company has already helped thousands save money and obtain the necessary education required to live a financially healthy life.
Financial Education Benefits Center has partnered with several name brand third-party companies to expand the financial and educational products and services available to its members and to provide a variety of wellness services as well.
To learn more about Financial Education Benefits Center, please contact:
Financial Education Benefits Center
2010 Crow Canyon Place Ste. 100
San Ramon, CA 94583
SOURCE Financial Education Benefits Center