Everyone can benefit from revisiting their finances from time-to-time, even those of us who think we’ve got a handle on them already. But I can be a lazy procrastinator sometimes. So whenever possible, I try to find a way to make a “Should Do” into an “Oh Man, Let’s Do This!” by making it fun.
Personal Capital, a financial software and investment company, has on their blog a wonderful little 30-day money cleanse, written by one of their senior VPs, Michelle Brownstein. And it’s a good money exercise! I know that even I (someone who already thinks about her money way too much) would do well to go on this “cleanse.” Even my finances need a tune up, from time to time.
They even emailed me this nice printable calendar, which I know I should print out and work through:
But, here I am – weeks after someone first sent this to me, and I haven’t done it. I haven’t even done Day 1. Before today, I didn’t even look at anything past the intro in the blog post. I just keep putting it off! It’s been open in a tab in my browser forever.
What if this weren’t just a money cleanse… but a game? What if I had an avatar, and completing the different tasks in the money cleanse earned me XP to level up, and gold to buy silly outfits and equipment? What if I could have little pets and mounts for my avatar? Could I turn this money cleanse into a video game, so that I would complete the tasks just to level up?
Enter Habitica – a gamified to-do list app (for browser, Android, and iOS) that turns my good habits, daily tasks, and to-dos into XP and gold earning opportunities! (And turns my bad habits and missed daily tasks into enemies that hurt my avatar’s health bar.) I’ve been using Habitica since early 2014, and I can definitely say that it has made my life better. Proof: I now floss, every. single. day. And I barely missed a single day of taking my prenatal vitamins during my entire pregnancy and beyond. Because if I didn’t do these things, my avatar would lose health points!
So if Habitica can get me to floss and take my vitamins every day, can it get me to actually go through with the money cleanse I’ve been putting off?
Of course it can!
And it can do the same for you.
That’s why I turned the 30-Day Money Cleanse into a “challenge” on Habitica. Challenges are “community events in which players compete and earn prizes by completing a group of related tasks” according to the Habitica wiki. That’s perfect for this money cleanse! So I put up the prize myself (10 “gems” – a currency in Habitica that you can only get by putting up real money, or winning challenges!) for someone who completes the challenge along with me.
I took all 30 days of the money cleanse and put them into the challenge, along with some helpful hints of my own about how to use Habitica to get the most out of the 30-day cleanse!
Completing each day in the cleanse will earn your character gold, and one lucky winner will also get the 10-gem prize I’ve put up for the challenge. You’ll want to get started on the challenge right away, because I’ll be picking a winner out of those who have completed it by Thursday, March 16, 2017!
Current Habitica users can simply click the button below to join the challenge and get started! If you are new to Habitica, you will need to sign up for an account (it’s free!), and you’ll probably want to complete the short tutorial. Then, click the button below to join the challenge!
Of course, you can do the 30-Day Money Cleanse without joining the Habitica challenge. (Play it straight “vanilla,” if you will.) Whether you use Habitica to motivate yourself or just do the cleanse straight up, I’d love to hear how it goes for you! I’ll be posting a summary of my progress as I complete it myself, so come on back and let me know how it’s going for you.