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The Money-Shredding Alarm Clock! (And other ways to help keep you motivated)

by J. Money on Thursday, June 23, 2011

money shredding alarm clock
OMG if there was ever away to wake me up in the morning, this would be it!! I hate it when people/things take my money!!! :) Almost as much as I hate waking up in the morning! Haha… (well, waking up early that is – I very much like waking up and breathing!)

It doesn’t seem like this is a real clock you can actually buy at the moment unfortunately, but after googling around it DOES look like Life Hacker has a decent solution for you ;)  (Or me – which I’m very tempted to try and report back on!).  They recommend taping dollar bills to pieces of paper and then plugging in your paper shredder to an indoor outlet timer! Haha… Yes, I think that would definitely do the trick.

This also reminded me of another way I think you can get motivated to do something pretty damn fast. Have you ever heard of Stickk.com?  One of my boys was talking about it during our last Wine Club meeting (we just sit around drinking wine, we don’t actually know what we’re doing, haha…) and it’s billed as “the smartest way to set and achieve your goals.” At first I was just half-paying attention to him cuz I thought it was gonna be like any other boring site out there, BUT he said they have these options where they pretty much PUNISH you if you fail to follow your goals, rather than REWARD you! Haha… which really is the complete opposite of the other tools out there.

I haven’t tried it out myself yet, but one of the ideas he threw out was freakin’ hilarious! He said some people are setting it so that whenever they mess up on whatever goals they’re trying to hit, they’d be charged $20 from their credit card and have that money donated directly to the political party they hate! Haha… what do you think about THAT for motivation?  Would that get you to the gym 3 times a week or to stop eating out all the time? :)

You have total control as to where the money goes and how much and all that kinda stuff too, obviously, but I think the whole “punishing yourself” mentality is the game changer with this stuff here.  If you set it to send money to your friends or loved ones, or even a charity which some people are doing, it’s great for helping out your fellow man and all that jazz, but would it be *as* motivational for you if you mess up?  Not at all for me.  I’d mess up on purpose to help others out! Haha…. but if you were taking my money and giving it to, say, an enemy of mine or a place I can’t stand (the political stuff doesn’t bother me much), I’d make sure I was doing everything in my power to stop you from dishing it out.  Which at the same time would help me reach my goals :)

If you can’t tell by now, I act quickly when it comes to losing my money. Probably faster than when I’m trying to EARN it! Haha… I don’t know if that’s good or bad really, but either way I try to hold onto it as much as I possibly can.  And I need that alarm clock to keep me sharp and on track!

———
PS: Shout out to LindyMint for exciting me on that bad boy!
PPS: If I end up trying the paper shredder idea, I’ll be sure to keep you posted ;)


{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Buck Rogers June 23, 2011 at 8:32 am

Very awesome! It’s become something of a truism amongst behavioral economists that loss aversion is among the strongest of motivators, so it makes sense that you act more quickly when it comes to losing money than you do when it comes to earning it.

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2 cashflowmantra June 23, 2011 at 8:51 am

I had heard of that site or something similar but never really bothered to check it out. Don’t know that I need to feel accountable to strangers so much that I would lose money. I will try to accomplish my goals on my own. But I do have trouble getting out of bed some mornings.

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3 Melissa June 23, 2011 at 9:16 am

I am the worst when it comes to snoozing my alarm clock. I just never stop. I really want to try something like this:

http://slideme.org/application/math-alarm-clock

But I think it would ruin me.

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4 No Debt MBA June 23, 2011 at 9:39 am

I’m pretty good about getting up in the morning but that system would get me up and out of bed in a blind panic as soon as I heard the shredder turn on. I hate losing money when it’s my fault! I’ve heard of the website but haven’t used it. Guess I’m chicken to put my money with my mouth is ;)

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5 Trinnie June 23, 2011 at 9:55 am

(okay, first of all, I literally laughed out loud when you described your wine club. Sounds exactly what went on when a friend and I attempted to host “wine tastings” a year ago.)

The idea of losing money when it’s my fault really stresses me out, so I try not to do it…and you’re right…if the concept of a website was to help people when you don’t reach your goal, then I totally would never accomplish my goals ;)

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6 Crystal June 23, 2011 at 10:04 am

I’d go to a wine club if I didn’t have to learn anything…

Losing money does stress me out but I also am easily angered when I’m tired, so negative reinforcement may lead me to break things…I’ll just stick with self-motivation. I get myself out of bed by thinking of who may have emailed me while I was sleeping. :-)

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7 Elise Adams June 23, 2011 at 12:03 pm

Yes! Totally great motivator–negative consequences! This is my main complaint with government assistance. If I’m not afraid of REALLY being homeless then who cares about getting off the bottom? (Remember, I’ve lived ‘down here’ for nearly forever–way too easy to accept the unacceptable.)

This is why I’ve made our budget tighter than ever before for the next 6 months–we’ve got to be desperate enough (or scared enough, depending on your perspective) to get off our butts :-) Wrote about it here http://adamsorganizing.com//2011/06/23/kicking-povertys-butt-our-new-thing-no-more-insanity/

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8 Lindy Mint June 23, 2011 at 12:34 pm

We’ve seen money-loss work as a motivator in our house. Taking quarters from my four-year-old’s piggy bank every time he left pee on the toilet seat made him correct that bad habit real quick. :)

I definitely think it can work, given the right circumstances.

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9 Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager June 23, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Can’t you just set an alarm at “heart attack” loud across the room? That way you have to get up to actually turn it off?

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10 20 and Engaged June 23, 2011 at 4:16 pm

That would be way too extreme for me. I’d wake up every morning in a panic. I’ll choose the clock that donates money to charity or something lol

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11 Jen @ Master the Art of Saving June 23, 2011 at 6:10 pm

That’s just crazy. I wouldn’t be able to sleep if I knew there was a chance of my $ getting shredded up.

The site about punishing you for not meeting your goals, couldn’t you just lie about it and say you did? I probably would do that if I knew my money was going to be given away otherwise.

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12 Ashley @ Money Talks June 23, 2011 at 7:05 pm

You hate me right? You hate me so much that you want to give me money! Grr… I make you so MAD!

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13 J. Money June 23, 2011 at 7:54 pm

Haha… check out these other EVIL alarm clocks that my girl Jenna sent over earlier on Twitter :) All of these would get me to wake the F up! Haha… esp the “random phone dialing” one – scary!

@Buck Rogers – It’s funny how that works, huh? I’d love to read more about it actually – I have it on my list to check out :)
@cashflowmantra – Yeah, I don’t ever try out sites like that either but I’d imagine I would if I thought I couldn’t do it on my own. Some of them have pretty good communities going on and relating to others is always nice & motivating. Kinda like our clan here on the blog in my opinion :)
@Melissa – Oh my gosh that would be horrible!!! Haha… now way I’d try that one out, would be a bad way to start the day :) (even though I do, secretly, like math)
@No Debt MBA – Does it suck as hard losing money when it’s NOT your fault? Haha… I think it would feel better for me when it IS my fault over someone else’s… but I’m not gonna put it to test and find out. Either way I don’t like it :)
@Trinnie – Hehe, yeah we do “wine tasting” too, and even have one of those buckets to spill out/spit the wines we don’t like, but usually we all just start chatting and not paying attention to what we’re all doing. The best part is having like 20 bottles to choose from and testing out all kinds :) Oh, and the food too. Muy muy importante if you’re drinking all those grapes!
@Crystal – Haha… I used to think about that too, but now I find that hundreds of people are emailing me and they usually require me to do MORE work ;) Not even the paypal payments I get motivate me anymore! haha… you’re always welcome to attend our wine meet-ups too if the stats ever align :)
@Elise Adams – Yup! You gotta be afraid in order to REALLY change sometimes! Glad to see you’re still so passionate in your goals and writing – will check it out in a few :)
@Lindy Mint – Hahahaaha best comment of the day! (And I’m totally tweeting that right now btw :) But I’m not referring to you so you don’t get in trouble!) Thanks for inspiring this post to begine with!
@Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager – Is that really a mode? For the iPhone? If so yeah – I can try that! :) Though knowing me I’d just come back into bed for “5 more minutes,” ugh…
@20 and Engaged – At least then SOMEONE will be winning :) (which reminds me – whatever happened to all those Charlie Sheen references? I miss them. D’uh!)
@Jen @ Master the Art of Saving – Well, I mean you set your own goals and your own punishments, so if you were using the site to motivate you better you probably wouldn’t waste the time tricking yourself or changing it up before you slipped each time ;) Then there’d be no point.
@Ashley @ Money Talks – Hahahahaa.. 2nd best comment of the day! Good one :) Though I’ll admit it took me a few seconds to catch on. Haha…

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14 Crystal June 24, 2011 at 11:33 am

Seriously, the paypal payment notifications don’t give you a little thrill anymore?! Dude, you are jaded and can just send those things my way, LOL! :-)

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15 rente-doorlopendkrediet June 24, 2011 at 2:04 pm

One word: Awesome!!!!!! Have to have it! It’s a good birhtday gift! :D

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16 Ruud van Oost June 24, 2011 at 11:21 pm

I don’t see why your philosophy on stimulating and/or motivating performance thrue punishment is to be called innovative… People and employees are naturally being punished (fired) if they don’t meet meet their targets. Rewarding people is à sign of respect for their extraordinairy performance and is rewarded, not before but, after showing their extra performance. Claiming motivation thrue punishment is something that will never work on the long run.. Fear is no motivater! As history has shown…

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17 J. Money June 26, 2011 at 5:46 pm

@Crystal – Haha… I’m not *that* jaded! :)
@rente-doorlopendkrediet – Wish anyone could buy it for you! Not on the market yet…. or maybe ever? :(
@Ruud van Oost – Well, all I know is that it works for me on certain things so I’m using it to my advantage ;) and luckily success also motivates me too so it’s kinda win-win.

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