Gary Clement for The National
Gary Clement for The National

Nurture your money to boost your finances



I live a dangerous life. Being tactile is often cautioned against in any social setting, more-so in the gender/social-conduct-sensitised GCC.

Those on the receiving end should consider themselves lucky – I am helping them release a super hormone. Not only is it connected to our emotions – we feel better when we get a dose – but it is now being credited with helping create bigger brains and higher salaries. Oxy­tocin is the name, aka the hug hormone.

However, you and I might have missed that boat, as it is a 20-year study involving premature babies. It found that those born pre-term, who were nurtured at the start of their lives through skin-to-skin contact with their primary carer – so their mother was their incubator – commanded salaries nearly 53 per cent higher than their incubated counterparts.

Along with more money in their life, their cerebral development was significantly higher and they had less stressful lives.

More on the findings of tactile parenting later.

I’m bringing this up because I am especially interested in the relationship between body and mind. And I believe that most of us would benefit from very simple, tactile, or what’s known in learning styles as kinaesthetic methods, to stay on top of managing our finances.

What’s more simple than adding and subtracting a bunch of numbers – at the most basic level of personal finance information: money in, out, what is left?

What is difficult about setting time aside to have a helicopter view of our financial issues: investment, debt, savings, goals?

Nothing. But hundreds of millions of dollars are spent on self-help books and guides to “teach” us the “best” method to do this.

There is no best way. The best way is whatever way you stick with. And I’m advocating going back to basics, and incorporating what neuroscience tells us about how we learn and stick to things best.

Point 1: Movement and cognition are powerfully connected.

2: The right setting and tools help us build positive, powerful relationships with whatever it is we are learning or doing.

3: It is all about building relationships, with yourself and with the matter in hand. In this case, your personal finances.

I am cancelling my membership with a powerful budgeting tool. It’s very clever, and one day I plan to review it. But I’m no longer going to use it because I am disconnected from the input, and therefore the output it calculates. Instead, I am going back to basics.

I bought a beautifully bound notebook. It is a happy shade of orange. Just because. I write down every single item of spend. Then highlight things that group together and add them up.

Yes it is old school and it takes time. But it allows me a connection, a relationship, an emotional resonance with my finances. Doing it this way mixes up various alleged learning styles – there’s the visual, and the doing. It is embodied learning.

The place we do things in is also important. The message from neuroscientists is that reducing stimuli helps to declutter the mind. This is why a walk in a park before settling to do something cognitive serves us better than a walk in a mall or through a built-up area. A walk is statistically linked to oxytocin release too.

There is also irrefutable evidence that being physically active literally feeds the brain. It is said Albert Einstein came up with his theory of relativity while riding his bike.

Why not incorporate all these findings and create the “best” way of managing our finances – best being whatever way we stick to. My routine as of this week will be: jump up and down – if weather, time or children don’t permit for a walk. Make a piping hot cup of tea. Have my highlighters, calculator ready. Settle in my cubbyhole – decluttered – with my orange notebook – filled in daily, plus any other information I need to look at that week. Phone on silent, face down.

The following hour will be my date with me – my current self and my future self-hovering.

Set aside an hour that works for you. We need to do this weekly. It is relationship building at its best: a boost of oxytocin in situ, your favourite beverage at hand, in a calm setting, with all the information you need.

Just like any other relationship, we need to work at this one every day, build up comfort, trust and a safe feeling – the sort that only comes from knowing what you’re dealing with.

What I outlined is not all kin­aesthetic – there are strong visual elements too. It is said that 65 per cent of us are visual learners. Some studies rate 50 per cent of high-school children as kinaesthetic learners – they learn through doing. I know I am both.

Kinaesthetics is often called tactile learning. And this is how powerful being tactile is: the premature kangaroo mother care babies I mentioned in the study had more than twice the chance of living than incubated babies. Incubated babies are twice as likely to die (7.7 per cent versus 3.5 per cent).

We don’t know for sure how much skin-to-skin contact we had as babies, but what you do know is how you choose to be and behave today. Go on.

Be an oxytocin-releasing super- ­hero whose special power is actually managing money in your life. May the force be with you. It is certainly within you.

Nima Abu Wardeh describes herself using three words: Person. Parent. Pupil. Each day she works out which one gets priority, sharing her journey on finding-nima.com

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

KEY DATES IN AMAZON'S HISTORY

July 5, 1994: Jeff Bezos founds Cadabra Inc, which would later be renamed to Amazon.com, because his lawyer misheard the name as 'cadaver'. In its earliest days, the bookstore operated out of a rented garage in Bellevue, Washington

July 16, 1995: Amazon formally opens as an online bookseller. Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought becomes the first item sold on Amazon

1997: Amazon goes public at $18 a share, which has grown about 1,000 per cent at present. Its highest closing price was $197.85 on June 27, 2024

1998: Amazon acquires IMDb, its first major acquisition. It also starts selling CDs and DVDs

2000: Amazon Marketplace opens, allowing people to sell items on the website

2002: Amazon forms what would become Amazon Web Services, opening the Amazon.com platform to all developers. The cloud unit would follow in 2006

2003: Amazon turns in an annual profit of $75 million, the first time it ended a year in the black

2005: Amazon Prime is introduced, its first-ever subscription service that offered US customers free two-day shipping for $79 a year

2006: Amazon Unbox is unveiled, the company's video service that would later morph into Amazon Instant Video and, ultimately, Amazon Video

2007: Amazon's first hardware product, the Kindle e-reader, is introduced; the Fire TV and Fire Phone would come in 2014. Grocery service Amazon Fresh is also started

2009: Amazon introduces Amazon Basics, its in-house label for a variety of products

2010: The foundations for Amazon Studios were laid. Its first original streaming content debuted in 2013

2011: The Amazon Appstore for Google's Android is launched. It is still unavailable on Apple's iOS

2014: The Amazon Echo is launched, a speaker that acts as a personal digital assistant powered by Alexa

2017: Amazon acquires Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, its biggest acquisition

2018: Amazon's market cap briefly crosses the $1 trillion mark, making it, at the time, only the third company to achieve that milestone

POSSIBLE ENGLAND EURO 2020 SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Jordan Pickford, Nick Pope, Dean Henderson.
Defenders: Trent Alexander-Arnold, Kieran Trippier, Joe Gomez, John Stones, Harry Maguire, Tyrone Mings, Ben Chilwell, Fabian Delph.
Midfielders: Declan Rice, Harry Winks, Jordan Henderson, Ross Barkley, Mason Mount, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
Forwards: Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, Tammy Abraham, Callum Hudson-Odoi.

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

Results

Stage 4

1. Dylan Groenewegen (NED) Jumbo-Visma 04:16:13

2. Gaviria (COL) UAE Team Emirates

3. Pascal Ackermann (GER) Bora-Hansgrohe

4. Sam Bennett (IRL) Deceuninck-QuickStep

5. Caleb Ewan (AUS) Lotto Soudal

General Classification:

1. Adam Yates (GBR) Mitchelton-Scott        16:46:15

2. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE Team Emirates         0:01:07

3. Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ) Astana Pro Team          0:01:35

4. David Gaudu (FRA) Groupama-FDJ         0:01:40

5. Rafal Majka (POL) Bora-Hansgrohe

Captain Marvel

Director: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck

Starring: Brie Larson, Samuel L Jackson, Jude Law,  Ben Mendelsohn

4/5 stars

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Eco Way
Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

SPECS: Polestar 3

Engine: Long-range dual motor with 400V battery
Power: 360kW / 483bhp
Torque: 840Nm
Transmission: Single-speed automatic
Max touring range: 628km
0-100km/h: 4.7sec
Top speed: 210kph
Price: From Dh360,000
On sale: September

RACE CARD

6.30pm: Maiden (TB) Dh82,500 (Dirt) 1,200m

7.05pm: Maiden (TB) Dh82,500 (D) 1,900m

7.40pm: Handicap (TB) Dh102,500 (D) 2,000m

8.15pm: Conditions (TB) Dh120,000 (D) 1,600m

8.50pm: Handicap (TB) Dh95,000 (D) 1,600m

9.25pm: Handicap (TB) Dh87,500 (D) 1,400m

Start times

5.55am: Wheelchair Marathon Elites

6am: Marathon Elites

7am: Marathon Masses

9am: 10Km Road Race

11am: 4Km Fun Run

'Ashkal'

Director: Youssef Chebbi

Stars: Fatma Oussaifi and Mohamed Houcine Grayaa

Rating: 4/5

The specs

Engine: 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 680hp at 6,000rpm
Torque: 800Nm at 2,750-6,000rpm
Transmission: Rear-mounted eight-speed auto
Fuel consumption: 13.6L/100km
On sale: Orderbook open; deliveries start end of year
Price: From Dh970,000

Shubh Mangal Saavdhan
Directed by: RS Prasanna
Starring: Ayushmann Khurrana, Bhumi Pednekar

I Care A Lot

Directed by: J Blakeson

Starring: Rosamund Pike, Peter Dinklage

3/5 stars

Director: Nag Ashwin

Starring: Prabhas, Saswata Chatterjee, Deepika Padukone, Amitabh Bachchan, Shobhana

Rating: ★★★★

Top 10 most competitive economies

1. Singapore
2. Switzerland
3. Denmark
4. Ireland
5. Hong Kong
6. Sweden
7. UAE
8. Taiwan
9. Netherlands
10. Norway

Sour Grapes

Author: Zakaria Tamer
Publisher: Syracuse University Press
Pages: 176

GULF MEN'S LEAGUE

Pool A Dubai Hurricanes, Bahrain, Dubai Exiles, Dubai Tigers 2

Pool B Abu Dhabi Harlequins, Jebel Ali Dragons, Dubai Knights Eagles, Dubai Tigers

 

Opening fixtures

Thursday, December 5

6.40pm, Pitch 8, Abu Dhabi Harlequins v Dubai Knights Eagles

7pm, Pitch 2, Jebel Ali Dragons v Dubai Tigers

7pm, Pitch 4, Dubai Hurricanes v Dubai Exiles

7pm, Pitch 5, Bahrain v Dubai Eagles 2

 

Recent winners

2018 Dubai Hurricanes

2017 Dubai Exiles

2016 Abu Dhabi Harlequins

2015 Abu Dhabi Harlequins

2014 Abu Dhabi Harlequins

ANATOMY OF A FALL

Director: Justine Triet

Starring: Sandra Huller, Swann Arlaud, Milo Machado-Graner

Rating: 5/5

India squad

Virat Kohli (captain), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, K.L. Rahul, Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Rishabh Pant, Shivam Dube, Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Deepak Chahar, Mohammed Shami, Shardul Thakur.

How to donate

Send “thenational” to the following numbers or call the hotline on: 0502955999
2289 – Dh10
2252 – Dh 50
6025 – Dh20
6027 – Dh 100
6026 – Dh 200

COMPANY PROFILE

Company: Mascotte Health

Started: 2023

Based: Miami, US

Founder: Bora Hamamcioglu

Sector: Online veterinary service provider

Investment stage: $1.2 million raised in seed funding


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