How to Stop Spending

Believe it or not, the best way to save money is…………not to spend it!!!  That might seem obvious, but it’s so true and so useful.  There is no better way to save money. You can work all you want, but if you spend that money, it was all for nothing (except those sweet new jeans – big whoop). Even if you’re budgeting or shopping for for different items, you’re STILL spending!!! That is not really saving money. Think of yourself as a scrooge – you’ll be much more comfortable because of it!

1. Fast Food
You might be spending money on those high-calorie, all-cardboard hamburgers that are meant to keep you hungry…but simply tell yourself that you don’t need that food. Stick to what you spend on groceries – and that’s it. To make your dollars go further, buy more fresh fruits and veggies. What’s not fresh, buy in bulk. Again, keep it at a minimum – cut that fast food (it’s terrible for you anyway!) and you’ll be set.

2. Gas
To save on gas, cut your expenses in half. Yes, you can. Decide not to drive all over town looking for bargains for toothpaste.  Your trips to the stores should be planned (with lists) made before you leave – do everything you can on this trip. Walk, carpool, bike or bus to work every other day. Do not volunteer your car for the church fellowship committee. If your kid wants to go to a movie, say sorry, not tonight – find something on TV!

3. Glamour
Those pricey designer bags are quite a status symbol.  How many of those status symbols do you own?  Who besides you knows how much you paid?  Does anyone really care?  If they are a part of your group’s image, you can find the same designer bags online at less than half the price charged in boutiques.  But, you would still be spending.  Tell all your girlfriends that bags are out of fashion with your budget.  You can get by without a handbag and be fashionably fancy-free by keeping your credit card in your pocket for emergency spending and putting on your make up at home.

4. Cable
The media has made us slaves to their demands.  Many think that we have to have cable to watch even the free local channels!   You don’t have to pay though.  Get a box to just have local channels.  If you must have cable, drop off the movie channels.  You can treat yourself to a movie at the theater and still save money. If you REALLY want to be smart and save, simply cut TV all together. As long as you have internet, you can watch every single show you want to keep up with – FREE (and anywhere you’d like)!!

5. Electricity
Wash clothes once a week at the absolute most, and combine as much as possible. You can run your dishwasher every three days at most. Re-use dishes when they’re only lightly dirty – and cram that dishwasher as full as you can get it!  Turn off your lights when you are not in the room. Cook for a week and freeze your food in containers.  Cooking for all those other meals will use more electricity than your microwave will in thawing out your food.

Jarrod Tillman likes to write about fashion, economics, latin culture & visiting

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