I remember it like it was yesterday. We had gotten to a point where we could pay for all our bills each month, save some money, and give. We had also just received a nice tax refund, and it was like GREEN LIGHT! Go spend that money on a few things you’ve always wanted!
© Antonioguillem / Dollar Photo Club
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My husband kept talking about how he wanted to watch YouTube videos on the TV, so I started the search for the right device to help us do that. After trying two devices without success, we got a third and it worked.
Then the TV started acting up. I was tempted to search for a better TV, but then we got a rather large bill from the hospital from my youngest daughter’s birth, and that dream was scratched.
During that time, we kept accumulating…stuff.
I call it stuff now because I really don’t care about any of it anymore. None of it pays for our bills. None of it comforts me when I am going through a hard time.
I almost wish it was all gone. Not because I’m ungrateful for it, but because none of it really aligns with my goals in life.
We spent so much time watching TV the first 6 years of our marriage, and it didn’t make our lives any better.
Our two story house is much too big for our current needs, and it sucks a lot of our hard-earned money out of our hands each month without much left to even pay for groceries, utilities, and other basic needs.
Now I believe that spending money above and beyond your current needs should truly be reserved for a birthday or Christmas. Period.
Right now I am not in a position to spend money, so of course it’s easy for me to say that. I am fairly certain that if I had even $100 extra each month, it would be gone like that because I have a long list of desires that I think would make my life easier if I just had them. Maybe they would, maybe they wouldn’t.
But to be sure that extra money doesn’t just go flying in the name of worldly desires, I have thought of one AMAZING way to slow down spending.
For every item I desire to bring in, one item, preferably of equal or greater value, must be removed (sold OR given away OR thrown away).
Say I wanted a new sweater that costs $30. After using Ebates* and buying the sweater with a $10 off coupon code, the sweater still costs $19.60. If I wanted that sweater bad enough, I would have to find something in my home that I could sell for at least $19.60 to get the money to pay for it.
Sounds silly, but I have no desire to bring more stuff into my home unless it is something that will add value to my life.
By putting off the purchase until I can sell something to get the money to buy it, I am delaying gratification and making sure that it is a purchase that I really want to make.
How do you delay purchases so you are only buying things that really matter to you?