Call it what you want. Your daily routine. Is it the distance from your spouse? Whining from your kids? Day after day cleaning? Or the same old job to go to? -insert your own here-. All these things can make a girl want to start spending money.
Sometimes that mundane routine of being home with the little ones makes you feel lonely.
Sometimes you want to spend money. You work hard for it. So why can’t you spend it?
Living life on a budget and within your means, it gets hard to shuffle against the mighty waves of “I need this and I want that.”
Have you noticed a dark cloud hanging over you just as you turn your eye to your neighbor? As soon as I think I need more, the cloud gets darker.
Loneliness seeps in when you are just starting to feel content with how things are going. Then the cloud comes when your dearest friend tells you, “You could have so much more.”
We start to believe. Happiness is just a new shiny item away. But we don’t think that, do we?
Man. What a word.
What a sneaky snake word.
Do you know why?
Because our society throws us a comparison suit every time, we plug in.
It plays on our inner self.
The only place I find that I’m not bombarded is nature. You know, outdoors WITHOUthinkne.
Oh wait, we don’t have T.V. commercials anymore, do we?
Of course, we all know this.
But the biggest problem I know as a millennial myself is this;
We are putting ourselves in a dangerous game of comparison.
I just did it the other day.
It’s 90 degrees out. The kids are sweating, and I tell them to get downstairs where our free A.C. flows on. (Basement)
I am in our kitchen, opening the cupboard to fill a cup for my daughter and my nail catches on the paint. I watch another piece of paint fall to the floor. The white spots on our red cupboards are beginning to look like leopards.
The many layers of paint are noticeable. The cheap particle board, also known as our kitchen shelves, looks ghetto. It may look worse since I tried to cover only half up with contact paper!
I can’t fit my plates straight in. You have to lift them just right and then slide them in. All the rest must come out and get stacked inside to get one mixing bowl in.
There are plenty of little quirks in our kitchen. There are plenty of reasons for society to laugh and ask, “Why don’t you get yourself a new kitchen?”
And then it started.
We need a new house.
We need a new kitchen.
We need this. We can get that. I. need. Now.
And in the few days of wanting, I started feeling distant from my soul. But, of course, my husband was there to remind me; who was I trying to please?!
I have said before that I am okay with our beat-up cupboards right now while having young kids.
I, too, wrestle with reminding myself extra money can go for date night or a trip to see my parents or the mortgage.
I can fight against our culture that says, “you aren’t spending enough money.”
Why do I think I need something new right now?
The Lord reminded me of contentment out in our raspberry patch. I heard a still small voice say-” Haven’t I given you so much already?”
I laughed. I fell to my knees, and I cried.
You have Lord. You do have.
Letting yourself soak in today’s culture of needing more can be dangerous. We quickly lose focus of our priorities in life.
If we wait and be patient, those wants will fade away. The more we replace wants with needs, our contentment shows up.
Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Sometimes the wants are granted in a way we could have never imagined. In a way, only God had planned.
Aim for contentment when striving to live the best life on a budget.
- Don’t feel ashamed for not spending money.
- Don’t feel ashamed for not needing something new.
- Don’t feel ashamed to look for used items before buying new ones.
- Don’t be ashamed to shop clearance and still use coupons. And by all means, DON’T be embarrassed to use coupons.
Today I’m praying for you right now reading this post. Let it be an encouragement to you or someone you know you can pass it on to.
You may look at your bank account with a sinking feeling in your stomach. It’s hard when you love to shop and want the latest fashion trends but don’t have enough money to buy them.
These 11 tips will help you stay frugal without sacrificing style or quality items that are important to you.
1- Shop around online before committing
There are so many websites that offer discounts on clothing and other items, so it’s worth taking the time to compare prices. You may be able to find a better deal on the same thing elsewhere.
Check out Thredup, an online thrift store- you can also send your gently used clothes to Thredup for cash.
2- Set a budget for yourself and stick to it.
You’re less likely to overspend when you know how much you’re willing to spend. It’s also a good idea to set a budget for each type of purchase, such as clothing, groceries, or entertainment.
If you are new to budgeting, check out how to get started with FREE printables here.
3- Look for sales and coupons.
Many stores offer discounts on clothes and other items when they sell. You can also find coupons online or in the Sunday newspaper. When shopping online and comparing prices, use websites that search for automatic coupons/discounts.
It’s always a good idea to visit the store’s website and look for coupons before shopping.
4- Only buy what you need.
It can be tempting to buy a new dress or shirt every time you go shopping, but this can quickly add up. Instead, try to be realistic about what you need and only purchase the necessary items.
5- Consider buying secondhand.
There are many online stores and brick-and-mortar stores that sell used clothing. You may be able to find some great deals this way, and you’re also doing something good for the environment. Thrift shopping has come a long way. Take advantage of Goodwill’s color days.
6- Buy clothes off-season.
This is a great way to save money since most stores offer discounts on clothing when they’re not in season. This is where clearance finds are my favorite!
Right now at Old Navy, I spotted kids’ shirts for $0.97 brand new. B.J.’s, Costco, and Sam’s are great places to shop for out-of-season clothes.
If you can’t stand wearing clothes that aren’t in style, consider saving them for later or giving them to someone else.
7- Avoid buying trendy items.
It can be tempting to buy the latest fashion trend, but it’s not always worth it. Instead, these items often go on sale soon after they’re released, so you can wait and buy them at a discount. You won’t have to worry about them going out of style.
8- Make your clothes.
This may not be for everyone, but if you’re willing to learn how to sew, you can save a lot of money. In addition, many online tutorials and video lessons can teach you how to make your clothes.
This would be a great time to take advantage of Craftsy- it’s an online membership running an incredible deal for March 2022. Pay only $1.99 for a year’s membership( $89 regularly).
Sign up here while this unique promo is going on.
9- Shop at outlet stores.
Outlet stores are a great place to find discounted clothing from well-known brands. Just be careful not to buy items that are damaged or have been worn before.
10- Be creative with what you have.
There are many ways to style the same item of clothing differently. You can also mix and match other pieces to create new outfits. If you’re stuck, consider looking online for outfit ideas.
With these tips, you’ll be able to stay stylish and save money simultaneously!
11- Write out your goals
When you write your goals, it makes your financial standpoint more real. When you want more stuff, you remember what you are working towards.
- Ask will take me a step away from my goal?
- Ask yourself if you love the item? Will this always bring joy to you?
If it does, take it a step further and say will I enjoy this in one year? Again, the bigger the price tag, the longer you should enjoy it.
- Will this serve a practical purpose?
- Where will this item end up in one year?
It helps when you can visualize where it will be in your home.
- How often will you use/wear the item?
Is it worth the cost for a one-time use? Can you wear the item many times and change accessories with it?
- Can it get more than one use?
Asking some of these questions will help you make a choice that will help you find contentment. Remember, we live in a world where everything is at our fingertips, but you can make a choice. You make the difference.
Live life with a purpose.