1. Buy Only What You Really Need
- Before purchasing something and before even taking out your wallet, stop for a second and ask yourself the crucial question: Do I really need this? Take a moment to reflect upon it and if you conclude that it is not something you need, but is something that you just want, put it back on the shelf immediately.
- If, however, you decide to get yourself a present and buy something, even if it doesn’t represent a true need, think that there are also other possible ways to have it.
- First, never buy it right away, but check if other shops have the same item for a lower price. Learn to become more frugal and before heading to any shop, search online to find the most convenient prices by using price comparison websites.
- Think of other easy alternatives as well: you can borrow it, share it, swap it with others or even make it yourself.
- Never go shopping on an empty stomach, or you would risk buying something unnecessary that you will sooner or later throw away. Everything has expiration date and needs to be consumed pretty quickly!
- One of the fundamental steps to become more frugal is to make a list before you go shopping and stick to it. Without a list, you are will be attracted to unnecessary items. You could start picking up things that are absolutely not essential.
2. Never Use Your Credit Card
- Credit cards are like invisible wallets – you never know how full or empty they are, which enables you to go on spending, without thinking. This is the main reason not to use credit cards.
- Become more frugal by learning to live within your daily budget. If you don’t have cash to buy an item that is not indispensable, don’t buy it and don’t pull out your credit card.
- Paying in “real money”, i.e. taking out your wallet and looking at the amount of cash you have, will make you think twice before paying for something.
- If, however, you need to withdraw money from your credit card, do it in the morning, after having established the amount of cash you can afford to spend that day.
3. Learn to Say No and Be Happy With Less
- If friends invite you out to dinner or to the movies and you can’t afford it, do not say yes! There will be other possibilities to go out and if they are real friends, you won’t loose them just for not being with them one evening. However, if you don’t feel like saying the truth, you can always make up a different excuse.
- The alternative to going out is inviting your friends over. Everybody can bring a snack or a drink, or you could even cook together, which won’t cost you much at all.
- Another good way to become more frugal is to learn to say no when your friend insists on going shopping together and you can’t afford it. Even if you tell yourself that you won’t spend a cent, you will however risk buying things that you haven’t planned and that are not necessary at all.
- It is not always necessary to spend money in order to feel satisfied. Spending money and purchasing new items are only momentary pleasures that do not involve any deeper or long-term satisfactions. When you get a craving to buy something, try replacing it with other activities that will leave you in a positive mood for a longer period of time.
- We are all focused on consuming, instead of being happy with less and satisfied with what we have.
It is not necessary to go to a fancy restaurant to have fun – you can organize a small party and prepare a delicious and unusual dinner together with your friends even on your balcony or terrace. This will help you become more frugal over time and teach you to fully enjoy simple things.
If you can’t afford a new dress, make it yourself! Ask a friend to help you or take sewing classes – it will be money well spent and you will save real cash on many future purchases. In addition, you will also have fun!
Teach your kids also to become more frugal. Instead of going to an amusement park and spending lot of money, take them to the countryside or just any city park – bring tasty sandwiches and a kite, or even a tent, and you’ll be surprised how thrilled and excited they will be.