The Skills to Pay the Bills

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I had always hated to pay my bills.

Getting a thick envelope from the credit card company, the power company, or the phone company, had  given me a slight sense of unease. I wanted to procrastinate, to put off the drudgery of sitting in front of the computer to dispense money to all of my creditors.

Then something funny happened…. I began to play the miles game.

Each credit card that I received in the mail came with its own terms. I had to spend “X” amount of money in “Y” amount of time, in order to get “Z” amount of miles.

It became a giant puzzle.


Desperate Attempt at Pun

The rules? Meet all of my spending requirements in the requisite amount of time without spending any extra money on things that I wouldn’t have bought already.

So I started to do all of the things that I have  written about in this blog.

I manufactured spend buy buying gift cards and converting them into checks using the bluebird card.

I made Amazon payments to my wife’s checking account.

I called all of my creditors to figure out ways to convert automatic debits from my checking account into automatic payments from my credit cards.

Suddenly paying bills was no longer a chore. I associated each bill that I had to pay, with the opportunity to get a little closer to my goal of accumulating miles.

I found myself opening the mailbox each evening with delight, and promptly sitting down and paying my bills.

Mrs. Miles Dividend M.D. used to do the lions share of bill paying. I volunteered to take over.

What was once drudgery, had become an enjoyable hobby.

I realize how ridiculous that must sound to you, dear Reader. But it’s the god’s honest truth.

It was a total accident. I never had any intention to enjoy paying my bills.

But there I was sitting in front of my computer gleefully paying a stack of bills and marking down the various accounts I paid them from on the bills themselves.

And I think this raises an important point: by accidentally shifting my frame of reference, what was once a distasteful responsibility, had become a joyful chance to play.

Paying bills was no longer something that I had to do, it was something that I wanted to do.

Might there be other ways to harness the power of the play, to make good habits more enjoyable?

Something tells me I will investigate this question further in the future!

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