Even as I was making that banner in Canva, I was creating a bunch of different excuses for putting it off. That’s not a good sign. For those reading this, have you had those racing thoughts when thinking of limiting what you can buy?
Things that went through my head (even now):
- Well I need to wait until the end of the month, at least. I have “Happy Place” to visit.
- I haven’t found the right coffee, and honestly, I really prefer espresso… maybe invest in an espresso machine?
- What if I lose more weight from working out? I will need new clothes.
- Ugh… maybe I should start on the new year?
- Tomorrow? Tomorrow seems hard. I need the weekend to prep and get comfortable with the idea of limiting what I can buy.
- Tired… just… this is going to take planning. You haven’t touched your bullet journal in weeks. Be honest. You haven’t.
- What if something really cool comes up?
This can go on and on. To be honest, there will never be a good time. This is no different than me giving up sugar to reduce fibro flare-ups. Yes, it’s the same cycle. I know being in debt and living paycheck to paycheck stresses me out and makes me feel I’m not a functioning adult. I know that sugar hurts my joints and that I lose almost a whole night of sleep. By spending money on something, I get this quick rush of a happy high. The feeling is like a sugar high; great at the beginning, but the crash sucks balls.
In the “Year of Less”, Cait suggests downsizing while practicing the shopping ban. I didn’t think I had anything left to donate, but I definitely do. I picked out 20 outfits that I never wear and that I really didn’t like. As I was downsizing, I started to think of the other things I own that I kept around, but thought it “sparked joy”.
So let’s… let’s start now.
The Shopping Ban List
What I Can Buy:
- Toiletries (Only one of each on hand at a time)
- Travel /Experiences
- Tattoos (I don’t get them all the time, and I never have enough money saved up for them)
- Replacement of clothes and shoes (must remove an item that it will be replacing)
- One plant a month
- Purchase alcohol more than two times a month (max 2 drinks)
- Gifts for friends/family
- Important Life Moments (i.e. Weddings, Anti-baby showers, Baby Showers, ect.)
- Books for Classes
- Health Management (i.e. Massages, medicine, Haircut/Waxes)
- Exercise Related (i.e. Orange Theory, Rock Climbing)
What I Can’t Buy
- Prepared Coffee/tea
- Fast food
- Eating out
- Buying new clothes and shoes (See stipulation under ‘What I Can Buy’)
- Anything on the internet that isn’t a bill or falls under the approved list.
- Home Goods/ Decor
- New appliances (especially uni-taskers)
- No subscription boxes (NONE ALICIA)
As I was thinking this over this list, I think this will end up being a living document. I know a majority of my spending comes from food. I’m not surprised that I gained weight from looking at my spending habits.
What are some things I hope to achieve?
- Save at least 45-50% of my income into a savings account.
- Find more effective and healthy coping mechanisms for the following feelings: anxiety, boredom, depression, and pain.
- Pay back my parents the money they loaned me
- Begin to pay off a good chunk of my student loans
- Travel more throughout the year
I am starting this now. I’m going to post on my Facebook to let my friends and family know. I can at least start this list now, and this weekend I will work on the purge of items I don’t use. I feel really good about this, and I am excited to make my 30’s a very healthy and happy decade.