Much like dieting – when it comes to budgeting and sticking to it, all of a sudden we are much more aware of all the things we CAN’T HAVE.
In the first few weeks of our new budgeting lifestyle we had to go through ‘withdrawl’ and close examination of things we NEEDED and things we WANTED (more on this topic infuture posts).
I clearly remember avoiding entering any malls or going to places where I would either “have to” spend money or want to.
This is very hard and as the months go by and I become more ‘relaxed’, I find myself spending money on things I really shouldn’t.
The best example of this are the daily coupon deals.
Food coupons are great – unless you weren’t going to buy the product in the first place. If you’re just buying because it’s on sale and would’t have bought it otherwise it’s not really saving is it? I argue this point many times with a certain family member (you know who you are dad) but some people like to feel they are getting a bargain when in fact they are spending money needlessly.
As for the all vacation, gadget, electronics, toys and so on ‘daily deals’ – There was a point where I would browse them daily and be very tempted to make some purchases. Sometimes I did and later regretted it. Now I make a list of all the things I wanted and didn’t buy as a way of ‘documenting’ how much money I “saved” by not purchasing it and feeling GREAT about it.
I once read an article on ‘impulse buying’ and basically how sucessful it is when there is a sense of urgency. For instance when you see an sales ad for something you want and you see the original price crossed out and the selling price much lower and the words ‘for a limited time only’ or something of that nature, there’s something in our brain that triggers ‘I must get this now before the price goes up again!!!!’ I know I feel this way sometimes and I always have to fight the urge. Truth is 9 out of 10 times the ‘special sale price’ remains for many more months, if not permenantly, and I laugh and congratulate myself for overcoming my inner child.
I would love to hear how do you conqure yours?