Saving money and living frugally is pretty easy if you have the right attitude and clear goals. If you know exactly why you want to save money and how much you want to save by a certain period of time, you are half way to your success. If you are smart enough to know that money will not make you happy, you have already succeeded.
Remember, recent studies proved that money can only make you happy if you spend it on others. In American society money is certainly overrated due to an overall consumer climate and media influence. We believe that we need a Lexus, a Blackberry and a Snuggie to be happy. We get in debt or spend all our savings to get these. We get excited for awhile and then want something else. It becomes an endless cycle, which we need to break if we want to live frugally and debt free.
The first and the most important rule for frugal living is the realization that life is not about having things. It is amazing how much money Americans spend for things they don’t need. Some studies show that “shopping” is one of the most favorite activities of young women. Believe it or not, some cultures don’t even have such a word as “shopping.” People go to the store only when they need something, and not to hang out or check out the new collection. Interesting how culture defines the language.
Stop believing the media that you need a large house and a 7th pair of jeans in order to be happy. You don’t. If you are reading this, there is a good chance that you are not a millionaire and money doesn’t come easily to you.
Rethink your habits. Skip your Dunkin Donuts coffee in the morning. Don’t go out shopping unless you need something. Instead of going out, learn to cook from scratch with your partner, or your child. Make your own cleaning solutions and beauty products. They are much healthier for you anyway. Instead of buying books, use the library. When you buy something that you really need, look for coupons, use cash-back sites, buy food in bulk… The list goes on. Don’t let skillful advertisers trick you that you need a myriad of things. More often than not, you don’t. It is their job to trick you. Make it your job to be firm and honest with yourself.