How to stop spending money

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Learn how to stop spending money without feeling deprived

The rational side of your brain knows things are tight and budgeting is necessary. Unfortunately the other side disagrees. When money is tight, spending money can give you the false perception of being in control.

Learning how to stop spending money is a much healthier way to gain control.

How bad can things be if youíre still buying yourself a daily $5 coffee ďtreatĒ? The answer is pretty bad and possibly getting worse. The whole point of budgeting is to live within your means. The irony is that this can make you feel deprived, which increases the urge to spend money.

Sometimes we break our budgets for items we need, like groceries, school clothing and household items. The practical voice pipes up to remind you of ways to save, but you push it aside because whatís done is done. And never mind the one or two things that made it into the cart even though they werenít on the list.

Everyone has phases of splurging that coincide with a slower cash flow. Itís time to get a handle on your finances and pick up a few tips to stay on the right track.

Tips for How to Stop Spending Money

Nip excuses in the bud!

The cleverer you are, the more elaborate the excuses get. Does this sound familiar: ďItís on sale! Iíll actually be saving money.Ē

If this were true, weíd all be rich from savings alone. Donít fall for it.

Never buy an item thatís on sale unless you were going to buy it anyway that month. And if the great deal is still out of your budget, step away from the product. If youíre on a weekly budget and you do buy an item on sale, review the shopping list as something else will probably need to wait until next week.

Shop with a list

It doesnít take too long to sit down and make a shopping list, and itís incredible how effective this is at reducing your total. Making a list eliminates the power of impulse buys and wandering. The longer you wander in a store or browse online, the more money youíre likely to spend, particularly in big box and grocery stores.

A better cheer up treat

Just because things are tight doesnít mean youíre not working your butt off for the money you do have. This is correct, but letís re-examine how much of a treat splurges really are.

Consumable treats bring momentary satisfaction. Entertainment, like a movie or live music, last a bit longer and itís healthy to be amongst people, but these nights add up. Instead read your local papers and alternative presses, or go online and look for free or cheap festivals and other events in your area.

The best treats are the ones that wonít make you feel buyerís remorse after. Consider throwing a potluck dinner and cook your favorite dish, or going on a picnic with someone special. Spend time in nature on a hike or bike ride and youíll gain a major energy and mood boost without over spending.

Donít spend future earnings

As soon as things start to look up it may be tempting to do a little pre-celebrating. If a prospective client is about to throw business your way or a promotion is on the horizon, turn up the volume on your practical voice. Wait to take that trip or buy that lovely fall dress until the money is in your account.

Spending money you donít have is too much of a gamble. If you really want to purchase something, waiting a few weeks wonít hurt you. Plus, itíll validate that itís more than an impulse buy.

The best strategies on how to stop spending money will help you replace the pleasure that shopping once gave you. Actually controlling your finances and living more responsibly will make you feel good about yourself. Odds are you have some friends who are in the same situation and will adore your frugal ways.

Real Simple


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