We knew we had to do something big to start off the new year, we just weren’t sure what it was going to be. So we got started, made a plan and took action. Our final decision was to do a No Spending Month!
Honestly, I’m hoping this No Spending Month will turn into a sort of No Spending Year – inspired by Cait Flanders who did a Yearly Shopping Ban to help pay off all her debt – but we’ll see how it goes. It’s hard to set it in stone given that we will be working on lots of projects in the coming months, notably working on the house.
But the great thing about setting goals about saving money is that you can make your own rules. Nobody is going to tell you that it’s wrong to do this, or it’s not OK to do that. It’s all up to you. A No Spending Challenge might look a little bit different for every person. That’s the beauty of it.
For us, saving money by “not spending,” means:
- No coffee or tea when we’re out of the house
- No restaurants
- No takeout
- No new clothes
- No cosmetics (that’s on my end, obviously)
- No new books, notebooks, and movies
- No new tools (unless it is absolutely necessary)
- No household items
- No new electronics or appliances
Basically, no buying things just for the sake of purchasing something. No splurging. No treating ourselves to something nice. Instead, we will find joy in what we already have, and make the most of our time doing activities that don’t cost any money.
Another thing that we always add onto our list when it comes to a No Spending Challenge is minimizing our grocery shopping. Given the fact that we stockpile, we are able to focus on trying to use as much of our staple foods as possible. We also have lots of soups in the freezer, so those are on the menu this month as well.
Speaking of menus, let’s talk about Meal Planning. A great way to save money is to start Meal Planning. I urge you all to start planning your meals, even if you don’t always stick to it. Having a list of 7 meals each week makes grocery shopping easier, more convenient, and best of all – CHEAPER! So start now, you literally have nothing to lose. Except your money, if you don’t do it.
Should you need help getting started, I now offer Meal Planning Services! Feel free to click through the active link to read more about it or to work together.
The only things we will be paying for this month are the following:
- Electricity Bill
- Internet Bill
- Phone Bill
- Car Insurance
- Home Insurance
- Groceries (Budget is set at $200 for the entire month)
- Household Necessities (if we run out of toilet paper or dog food, for example)
Aside these things, there will be exceptions. As mentioned, we’ll be doing some project on the house and we’re excited to share our progress! The only other exception I can think of is if we want to go out and use our gift cards that we received for Christmas – I swear if we don’t use them, we always end up losing them.
We’ve also decided that the No Spending Challenge will be focusing on personal finances, with the goal to save money for repaying student loans.
If you like the idea of our No Spending Challenge, why don’t you join us, even if you just start today – any progress is a step closer to reaching your goals! We’d love to hear from you in the comments, let us know what you think and how you would go about doing your own No Spending Month.
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