Your growth mindset and your money

A computer on a piece of white paper and people pointing at things on the paper that reads "finance"

How do you feel when you think about your financial situation? Nervous? Excited? Sad? The way you feel about your money could be affecting the way you handle it. We believe that thinking about your finances in a different way will help you budget more effectively.

Mindset matters

If you avoid talking about money like it’s he-who-should-not-be-named, it’s probably because you don’t have a budget and avoid checking your accounts until there’s a problem. People who are on top of their finances aren’t afraid to look at their accounts because they know exactly what to expect.

Spending your brain power thinking that you are bad with money or that you can’t save anything no matter how hard you try, isn’t going to help you improve. It’s time to change the way you think about your money.

Decide you want to budget

Making the conscious decision to focus on your finances can make a big difference. Having a growth mindset will help you view your finances as an opportunity for growth and prosperity, rather than a huge challenge that puts you in debt.

Basically, when you believe you can budget, you can budget. Consistent positive reinforcement of your abilities will help you stay on track, but watch yourself when you don’t measure up to your hopes. You have to stay positive in all aspects of knowing you can do it, and that includes supporting yourself if you fail. Mistakes are allowed, negative self-talk is not.

Make a plan

In order to believe in yourself and stick to a budget or savings plan, you need to actually have a plan. Start by deciding on a goal (here are a few tips). Maybe you want to start an emergency fund or budget enough to join your friends for a road trip over winter break. Make sure your goal is SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, timely), and that you want it enough to make some real changes to your spending.

Live it

Now it’s up to you to live your budgeted reality and support yourself along the way. This is where having a growth mindset really starts to make a difference. The day-to-day part of maintaining a budget can be tough. Remember that you’re growing your wealth, not missing out on opportunities. Check out free things to do nearby, or plan fun nights in. You can change your money mindset with hard work, perseverance and believing in yourself.

Let us know how rethinking your budget has helped you. And if you’ve reached a money milestone, share it with us on Instagram. We’d love to celebrate your success.


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ASU’s chatbot, Sunny, has been helping students get adjusted to college life for a few years now. The questions from students year after year, rarely change. Sometimes it helps to see what other students are asking to stay informed and realize you aren’t the only one trying to figure it all out.

Welcome to the Hey Sunny blog – a library of advice for students from Sunny and the team supporting the bot.

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