Tuesday, November 15, 2011

dot cuts back {small ways}

Today, we have Maggy from Living Tall to join us with some outstanding tips on how to cut back on the day-to-day expenses.  And don't forget to leave some comment love!
I must say, when I got Beth’s e-mail about writing a guest post, I was getting off of a plane from San Francisco where I had bought nothing for myself…and hated it.  I’m telling you, there was a bottle of wine and a pair of shoes that were meant for me.

Just not my wallet.
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My husband is a youth pastor and I recently quit the job I hated to work with him at our church.  Roughly translated? We will put as much in savings in a year, as we used to in a month.  Beth asked me to provide some tips for money saving, but truthfully…I don’t sew (yet), I have a mild fear of thrifts stores (half the blogging world just shunned me),  and I find that a lot of DIY projects often cost more than I thought.

So how do we (try) to stay on a budget?
First, we made cut backs.  We got rid of cable, we sold my husband’s car that we were making payments on to buy a used one, and (duh) we started cutting back on everything else.

I’d like to talk about that last part.  Honestly, I think living on a budget is a lot of mind over matter.  In our culture and in our generation, credit cards are too readily available and wants vs needs isn’t really a headline.  If you’re committed to your budget, sometimes the hardest thing is sticking to it.  It’s basically a diet.  But!  Also like a diet, the long term effects are totally worth it.
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As for tips?
Ask yourself “do I need this”?  You’ll probably have to do it a few times.  That’s normal.
Oh and if you’re one of those people who can justify pretty much anything…stop that.
If you’re used to slipping your card in any slot you can find…use cash.  Our generation doesn’t understand money because we rarely ever see it when we spend it.   Cash out your grocery budget, miscellaneous (aka Target) budget, and shopping (if you have it at all) budget.  If you have it you can use it, no money in that envelope?  Sorry, try again next time.
Just say no to outings.  I know…it’s so not fun, but sometimes over committing socially is over committing financially.  Suggest a less expensive way to spend time than dinner and a movie or mani-pedis.  I now openly say “I’d love to but I can’t afford it” you would be surprised how many people say “me too” and all of the sudden you’re the hero.
Finally, stop negative thoughts.  I believe that worrying and complaining is basically negative meditating. If you can do that, you can do it positively instead.  Like that print says…don’t give up on later…for now. All of the sudden, you start realizing that living on a budget isn’t the end of the world.  It’s like getting over that first hump of a diet when all of the sudden you start to feel pretty sexy J

If you have any questions, shoot me an e-mail.  I love talking money and food and well…whatever.
Thanks for having me Beth!

1 comment:

  1. So glad to "meet" you! I just resigned from my job at my church 9 months ago and we talk about a lot of these things now. Great post! 1 thing we tried to do was budget on 1 income and use the extra to save/pay down school loans. We pay cash for our cars too - 10 years old, but no monthly payment and we pray they keep running for awhile! :)

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