Some insidious ways we spend too much:
Vowing to never eat out again and only cook at home: this is actually a good plan and can save quite a bit of money. The problem is how we go about it; because it is very easy to spend $50 on some of the best ingredients of a recipe and because we have other items on our grocery receipt we don’t really tally up that we could have had dinner out for even cheaper. The key is to consciously be aware and keep real up to date figures on how much the home made dinner costs including time, dishes, etc. and how many meals we were able to make with these ingredients. Most of us are very unclear when it comes to left overs because we really throw out so much of the food we think we will eat someday.
Shopping/Frenzy trips: Every weekend you can see the shopping warriors all over town running around to different areas of town, different stores, etc. to get all of the bargains they can muster. We have all seen the inequality of driving across town just to save a few bucks when it cost you more in gas, time and frustration to get there. But there also is a mindset that you have to give up so that you don’t put yourself or your pocketbook through this anymore. It is a mindset that says we must run around like chickens with our heads cut off or we are not being normal, or efficient, or getting things done, or whatever you tell yourself so that you can keep up with all the other shoppers out there. Try to give it up for 6 months and figure out a better way to buy things in a more calm and efficient manner and you will see that it truly was more of an empty activity behavior that just stressed you out and had you spending money you didn’t have.
Impulsive lifestyle: It is one thing to be thirsty and buy an overpriced drink now and again, but if you have become addicted to always being able to get anything you want when you want it, you could probably change a lot of your spending habits. Again, it is more of a bad habit that can be changed through conscious effort and rewarding yourself for not wasting money, time and being all stressed out when you figure out your expenses.
We all have money patterns that are so much a part of us that we don’t stop to reassess whether these patterns are still working for us or are was just reacting to being overstressed and continuing a cycle that we do not want to be a part of.