While sitting down and going over my finances and bills, I've noticed more money is going out than coming in. I've also noticed my credit card bills are starting to grow high balances. I knew something needed to be done before I get myself into a deeper financial hole I can't get out of.
I've decided I needed to start cutting back and making sacrifices on the things I buy and do. I've created a list of things I will be cutting back on.
1. Start bringing my lunch to work. I use my lunch breaks to pick up my oldest daughter from school. While I'm driving, I past by a lot of fast food restaurants which makes it tempting to stop and get a quick bite to eat. I decided before around the time I pick my daughter up from school, I'll eat the lunch I brought from home at work so when I'm driving past those fast food restaurants I wouldn't buy from them since I wouldn't be hungry. I've noticed by bringing my lunch to work, I started losing weight which is a plus!
2. Cut back on Starbucks. After dropping off my daughters to school, I like to stop by my local Starbucks for a frappaccino or an ice tea to give myself a treat and boost of energy before work. But those drinks that are about $5 can get expensive! So I knew I needed to cut back buying Starbucks. This will be a hard one for me so I decided to buy myself a Starbucks two times a month instead of every other day.
3. Go to the grocery store every two weeks. I use to go to the grocery store pretty much every day! Anything that runs out in my household, I would go to the grocery immediately and that created impulsive shopping. And what is worst, I've always seem to go to the grocery store hungry which makes me buy unnecessary items I don't need. Now I will start creating a list and stick to it! If I need to go to the grocery store between those two weeks will only be on emergency bases, like if we run out of milk, need water, or bread.
4. No more impulsive clothes shopping. Everyday I receive emails from my favorite clothing stores of sales which make it so tempting to buy. I'm a fashionista and I love to keep up with the latest trends and fashion but this is really hurting my wallet. I really have to stop and think, "Do I really need that dress on sale?" To stop this problem, I've decided to only shop when the seasons has change. So instead of me shopping for clothes and shoes every month, I will shop every 3 to 4 months and this rule will also apply for shopping for my kids clothes and shoes.
5. Stop using my credit cards. I've really been maxing out my credit cards which created high monthly payments and my credit rate to drop. I'm going to start paying more then the minimum balance to start bringing my balance down more faster. I may start shopping around to consolidate my credit card debts to get one low monthly payment. Once my debt is paid off, I'll start closing some of my credit card accounts and only use the ones I keep open for emergencies.
6. Stop going out to eat so much. There's times when I do not feel like cooking, so my family and I would go out to eat. Going out to eat has became very expensive, so I've decided to go out to eat twice a month. So if my friends ask me if I would like to go eat out with them and I've already eaten out twice that month, I would have to say no and go out to eat with them the following month.
7. Finding cheap activities to do on the weekends. Going out to different places during the weekends can be costly like going to the movies, museums, kid's play places, etc. I'm not going to completely wipe out my activities on the weekends and stay home but I will limit them. Also a fun free place for kids is the park and I'll start taking my kids there more often. Also I signed up my kids for Kidgit Kids Club with Simon Malls which is a kids club that is $5 membership a year and they offer free to almost free kids activities at participating Simon's malls. (Check your local area)
I've been cutting back my expenses for the last couple of weeks and I noticed the money I've been saving already.
Have you had to make sacrifices in order to save money? If so, what did you cut back?
I'm Louida from Atlanta, Georgia and I'm a mother of two daughters, blogger, and full time working mom at a Business Consulting Firm.
I love helping others learn how to start working from home on the internet free to supplement their current income.
I also blog at Productreviewmom.com
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