Too often people spend money on things because they think they need it. They convince themselves that buying a movie or going out to eat will make them happy. Why? Because the world around them has told them they need it. Everywhere you look you see an advertisement. These ads could be selling you a movie, an exercise machine or a slice of cheese. Whatever it is, it is pushing you to buy. The salesmen push so hard that they trick you into thinking you always need to be buying. People survived for centuries without these things though and it may be time to trick your mind back. Here are 5 things you can do to take back control.
- Borrow something you can return. You don’t need the newest movie if you only plan on watching it once. What you need to do is borrow it from a friend or rent it for a buck. Don’t spend close to $20 just so it can sit on a shelf for years to come.
- Buy something used. There are plenty of stores that sell good quality products that are used. You may be wary of buying someone else’s clothing, but there’s no reason to not think about buying someone’s used bike or DVD player. Hop on Craig’s list to find cheap, used items for sale.
- Cook a new recipe. Don’t fall for the “I’m bored of my food at home and want to eat out” routine. That route is addictive and can get expensive. What’s really happening is you’re tired of the same old things and just want a burger, or a pizza. Well go get your burger or pizza…ingredients. Then come back and make the food yourself. The experience can be fun and invigorating. It’s fun to learn new things and buying ingredients, as opposed to products, will save you a ton of money on your food bill at the end of the month.
- Exercise at home. You don’t need a gym to go running in. You don’t need one to lift dumbbells. A lot of the workouts that a gym can provide have alternative exercises that are actually better for you. They strengthen the surrounding muscles as well as your target ones, balancing your body out. Look on the internet for ideas.
- Avoid shopping at the store on an empty stomach. There is no stronger impulse to buy than a hungry person. Eat something before you go and go with a list. You will save dramatically when you do these two things.