If you’ve ever gone any length of time without spending money you’ve probably thought to yourself, “What am I going to do instead?”. It can seem, when we are in the habit, that the only way to have fun or have “a life” is to spend money. We get so used to doing activities that cost money as a way of entertainment, we forget or don’t realize how much money we actually spend on those things.
These last few months Greg and I have add to cut our spending down completely to just the necessities and it’s felt a little strange at times but isn’t as bad as I thought.
Where before I was so used to just going out to a thrift store as my activity for the day, now it seems weird walking in there. Where I used to just not think twice before picking up an item for a couple bucks, now I’m not constantly asking if that is even worth it?
It’s all about building habits.
So today I wanted to talk about three habits to build instead of spending money!
Three Habits To Start When You Stop Spending Money
HABIT ONE // READ MORE
I promise it’s not just the librarian that can get a kick out of good books. (But libraries still do exist, free entertainment right there people!) I’m constantly adding to my pile of “to be read” before I’ve even reached the bottom.
Whenever you take out an activity that involves spending money you always want to replace it with something else, otherwise you’ll be left feeling a little empty! So when you stop spending money on things you’ll want to replace those things. I can’t think of a better replacement than a good book!
For me personally I’ve been obsessed with personal development books. They have really become a great pick me up, and way to help me with my confidence, self awareness and fears. If you are trying to do any sort of life change (Like starting a blog!) it can be helpful to read books that help you understand yourself more. The same goes with trying to do something different with your money. Reading personal development books to help understand why you do the things you do, including spending money the way you do, can be extremely helpful.
As a bonus, there is no greater feeling than closing a book you’ve read cover to cover. Finishing a series on Netflix just isn’t the same..
Tip: Don’t chew more than you can swallow. If you never read, start with smaller books and work your way up so you don’t get discouraged. ;)
HABIT TWO // EXERCISE
While I haven’t actually started this one yet, I have it on the to do list.
When you are taking something away and replacing it, try replacing it with something that will make you feel awesome, like exercising. Now, before you all roll your eyes at me, give it a chance. While I still detest getting up in the morning just to move your body till it sweats all over, I can’t deny the positive effects it has on me.
Put aside looks and weight for a second and do it for the mental effects! I instantly can notice (and I swear feel) the endorphins inside me after I’ve exercised. My constant stressed self is more excited, energized and in a better mood! It’s almost like a drug I swear. People spend a lot of money going to the gym or buying programs and I’ve done that in the past. But the truth is there is nothing like a free home workout to get you saving money and your butt. ;)
Tip: Youtube is the best place for free workouts!
HABIT THREE // SPEND REAL TIME WITH REAL PEOPLE
I think a lot of people subconsciously succumb to the belief that you can only have a social life if you spend money to do things. I think 100% the opposite. If anything, spending less money allows me to have better and real relationships with people in my own home.
If you are one of those people that feels like you need to prepare a meal or a bunch of appetizers for people when they come over let me be the first to tell you, “You’re off the hook.”
No one expects that of you and if they do it’s because you’ve done it in the past. So the first time you don’t do that might be a little bit of a surprise, but by the next time it’s normal.
You teach people how to treat you and you teach them what to expect. Don’t feel pressured to feed all of your guests and spend more money doing it. Instead have them over for coffee or tea or bake $1 cookies. The most important part is the conversation, and that doesn’t cost a thing.
Tip: Choose a time that isn’t during a meal, usually the unspoken thing there is that there won’t be food. ;)
Stopping spending money can seem like a big undertaking but I promise it isn’t as bad as it seems. You can still have a full life and not be spending your paychecks away. The key is to train yourself right and build good habits with your money.
I hope you try and cut back your spending and start adding in these habits. Investing in yourself, instead of items, is one of the best things you can do in your life.
You got this!