I was at the library the other day and walked out not only with a book, but with a bag of money! They were giving away sacks with approximately $364 of genuine U.S. currency, so of course I had to get one.

Lest you think I am kidding you, here is a photo for proof:

The bag of shredded currency is a metaphor for the money people waste on unnecessary or frivolous spending. Like the money in the bag, it is real money that gets frittered away, little by little, with nothing to show for it. In fact, the bag of shredded bills is more exciting than some of the purchases I have made.

I think of the children’s book Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday*. He didn’t shred his money, but he made small, inconsequential purchases until his money was gone. “Good-bye fifteen cents,” he says, over and over. I am sure many can relate to his habits.

Think about your budgeting at home and at your organization and see if you can’t make some changes that improve your fiscal health. Money Smart Week (April 23-30), highlights ways people can be more aware of and better manage their personal finances. At the website, there are dozens of resources on financial literacy, credit, budgeting and more. 

It’s fun to get a bag of shredded cash at the library, but money without values looses its allure when applied to your real hard earned greenbacks. Use Money Smart Week to take steps so your budget isn’t unintentionally shredded going forward.

beth triplett

*Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst, 1978. (Yes, it’s the same Alexander who had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.)

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

I'm the chief connector at leadership dots where I serve as "the string" for individuals and organizations. Like stringing pearls together to make a necklace, "being the string" is an intentional way of thinking and behaving – making linkages between things that otherwise appear random or unconnected – whether that be supervising a staff, completing a dissertation or advancing a project in the workplace. I share daily leadership dots on my blog to provide examples of “the string” in action. I use the string philosophy through coaching, consulting and teaching to help others build capacity in themselves and their organizations. I craft analogies and metaphors that help people comprehend complex topics and understand their role in the system. My favorite work involves helping those new to supervision or newly promoted supervisors build confidence and learn the skills necessary to effectively lead their team.

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