How To Stop Spending Like You Are Rich (When You Are Not!)
Sure it would be fun to spend like a millionaire! We could buy a new Birkin bag (or for guys the latest Rolex), however, the truth is many millionaires are very frugal. This is how they became millionaires in the first place. They know the value of a dollar.
Nonetheless, it is easy to become obsessed with the latest and greatest style, toy, gadget, etc. (insert whatever you love to buy here…) Yet, if you are trying to save and contribute to a retirement and emergency fund, this is counterproductive.
In today’s post, I’m going to give you a list of ten ways to learn how to curb spending. Even if you aren’t buying big-ticket items like an Ipad, all the small ticket purchases add up. Try writing your spending down for one week and see how much that morning coffee, tube of lipstick and two dresses from the mall costs you. You will be surprised at the total.
Why Do We Buy So Much Stuff?
Current research shows, marketing is at an all time high. According to Psychology today, advertisers use positive conditioning to insure a consumer associates positive things with an item. For example, when you see a laundry detergent commercial with flowers, birds and sunshine, it conditions you to feel good about the laundry detergent. The sad part is, most of us don’t realize this type of conditioning is happening and this is how the conditioning works best.
Just turn on the t.v. and you are promised a lifestyle of the lady or man driving the convertible, wearing the latest fashion and eating at the best restaurant if you buy the product. It is no wonder, most of us feel we are not good enough unless we have a designer handbag or trendy suit. Consumerism at its finest.
Top Ten Ways to Stop Spending Like a Millionaire:
1. Stay out of the mall – I have to admit, at times when I go in a mall I become all googly eyed at the precisely pieced together window displays! Shoes, purses, clothes…. Oh My! It is hard to resist that Impulse Buy! However, by simply staying out of the mall, I don’t buy anything or I’m not tempted to go back later to spend our hard-earned money.
2. Like shopping online? Don’t save your credit card information to online stores. Saved credit card info makes it so easy to click away and spend away. There is no time to think, “Do I really need this?” Its best to have your credit card info put far away. Then you have to get up off the couch and leave your shopping trance before you actually buy.
3. Don’t go to the store hungry. This is a must, and a proven fact. If we shop when hungry, we buy more. According to an article in Forbes called Shopping Hungry? You’ll Spend More (Even if You’re Not Buying Food), “Being hungry amps up your desire to acquire things, according to new research from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management.” (Source Forbes) If your tummy is rumbling, you will be more inclined to spend.
Tip: Go to the store in the morning after a big breakfast.
Tip: Make sure to use Ibotta to receive extra cash back on groceries.
4. Go to the grocery store twice a month – I’m suggesting the same trick as the mall here. The less you go, the less you spend. You may need some careful meal planning to make this doable.
5. Make a list – A plan of action is always required to save money. Especially if you are using coupons and want your coupon plan to work out.
Need More Ideas? Keep Reading…
6. Use cash only and budget like a boss! Save up for big-ticket items. Many of you have heard of the cash envelope system. When only using cash, you are forced to stick to your budget. Here is an outstanding post on using the cash envelope system. Check it out! (The Ultimate Guide to the Cash Envelope System by The Budget Mom)
7. Have a “No spend” week once a month – Pick the first week or the last week… It doesn’t really matter. The key is to stop spending for an entire week. It is actually easier than it sounds. Here is an amazing post from a fabulous blogger, Kristen Larsen of Believe In a Budget, on things to do for a no spend day or week. Check it out! (Tips For A No Spend Day, Or Week, Or Month)
8. Create a stock pile to eliminate extra trips to the store. When items you frequently use are on sale, buy in bulk. I mean, buy a stock pile you will actually use. Don’t go out and buy a bunch of stuff just because it is on sale and will eventually be donated because you don’t use it. For example, I love Treseme’ hairspray. Target had a deal last year, buy three receive a $5 gift card (By the way…they have this deal often). I also had a coupon from the Sunday paper. I stocked up and didn’t have to buy hairspray for an entire year. (It also helped having kids because I don’t’ do my hair very often. LOL)
9. Take snacks with you (buy them in bulk) – Costco has great deals on bulk snacks and this is where we buy our kid’s snacks We take snacks with us on outings, instead of paying for overpriced food.
10. Make financial goals once a month. Sit down with your spouse or if you are single, just sit down. (Lol) Write down your financial goals for the month. Keep track of how much you have coming in and how much you can afford going out after paying your bills, saving for retirement and building your emergency fund.
Lastly, know that what you have is enough. You are good enough just being you. Make good friends in life, travel and keep an open mind and you will find contentment. All the stuff in the world will not make you happy. Having a retirement fund will give you piece of mind. Saving for an emergency fund will set you at ease. Your experiences will keep you content. Lastly, limit your exposure to all the advertising. It will save you time and money!
Thanks for the visit! Take care – Sarah
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