Monday, January 20, 2020

No-Spend Tricks and Tips

If you read our original post about No-Spend January and our follow up confession just a few weeks in, you know that we have good intention, but are no means perfect when it comes to not spending money in any given month.

Take today for example...we went to lunch on a gift card and went slightly over with an extra child eating with us and tipping the waitress.  We did however spend much less than normal and because of that I will call it a win for now.

I have loved hearing how some of you are following along and how some of you have tweaked No-Spend January to fit your family.  Let's face it, there is no true one size fits all and finding what works for you is the key to success.

That being said, I have a few ideas on how to better save, so here we go!

Don't shop!  Stop giggling, please.  I am serious.  Let me tell you- the fastest way to spend money is to wander down the aisles of a store.  Target, anyone?  These marketing people are good at what they do, ya'll, just saying.  We used to tell our kids to hide their eyes when we saw something we thought was inappropriate.  (yes, we are THAT family!)  People- HIDE. YOUR. EYES.  Don't go in a store when you do not need anything- it is just too tempting!  This includes Amazon!

Make a list! If you MUST go in a store, go in armed with a list and STICK. TO. IT!  Again, I am serious!  Do not deviate from the plan.  Buy only what you want and get out fast!

Use coupons and gift cards!  I use to love to use coupons in the grocery store.  It became a game to me and I loved the challenge.  Hey, I had little kids, I needed some entertainment outside the house.  But it works and combined with sales, you can save a lot of money.  As for gift cards, if you have them, use them wisely!  Look at menus ahead of time, know what you can afford, and then go and enjoy!  Thanks to a sweet friend, our meal out today cost us very little.

Avoid sales!  OK OK, yes, buy stuff on sale when you can, but DO NOT just go looking for sales.  If you do not need something, buying it on sale is NOT saving money.  I know a lot of people with stuff piled in closets that were bought on sale.  Not being used, not being enjoyed- just taking up space "in case" and a complete waste of money.

Practice self control!  Ask yourself, "Do I really need this?"  Better yet, write it down and see if in a week or two you still feel that you need it,  Often times when we remove ourselves from the immediate "I NEED that" moment, we see the value in waiting or even passing things up.

Stay strong!  Yes, sometimes we just need to make a decision and stick to it!  I had a Stitch Fix delivered last week- in the middle of my No-Spend month.  I do not usualy go out to clothes shop as it makes me a wreak, so this is a way I often buy clothes.  Huge praise that for once only ONE item called my name.  I quickly put the others in the return envelope and left the magical pants, which fit like a gem, on the top to consider.  The following morning as I stood considering them again this is what came to mind... you said NO SPENDING!  Surely you can do this, don't be a wimp.  Surely you have better self control.  As quick as I could I stuck those pants in the bag and sealed it, and sent them on their way.  It might seem like a small thing to you, but I am telling you the more we deny ourselves and show some restraint in random spending, the easier it gets. You can do it!

One more week to go- we can do this!  And I can't wait to see how much money we have indeed saved!  How about you?



  1. We're still going strong after a lapse early on. Staying out of stores is key! I needed milk the other day and sent my husband in to get it. I know myself once I get in a store! And I know him - if he has a mission he completes his mission and gets out quickly ��

  2. These are great for all year long! I have so many opportunities waiting on the girls during dance classes but I generally sit at the studio, in the car, reading or blogging so that I won't be tempted.

    And, I am going to have to get off the Old Navy email list. My daughter used a gift card from the holidays to buy some workout clothes and I get several emails A DAY with their "today only" sale prices. They are good prices and, while I am not normally tempted by email ads, these are tempting me. So, off I go now to get off the mailing list. :)

    Thanks for sharing your encouragement.


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