“I’m crazy frugal --- often to a fault.” Direct quote from yours truly, said way too often. My frugal ways add unnecessary stress to already stressful lives. Confused? Read on to see how cost-saving ways end up cost-costing a whole lot more - emotionally, physically and financially.
THE “CHEAPER” OPTION HUNT
I am a big offender of never-ending, inefficient searches for the deal for you-name-it (groceries, décor, clothes). Exhibit A: summer camp (cha-ching, cha-ching). During the months (not exaggerating) spent searching for “the best value,” the summer plans loom over my head. I’m short with anyone (family or friend, no one is spared) whenever they ask about our plans. I act like a victim who has to plan their kids summer. Guess what? Summer camp is expensive. Guess what? It also works best for my family and our situation. These are the facts. Accept and move forward. The state of indecision caused by the hunt is financially and emotionally expensive. And I’m tired of wasting that “money.” Now to book the camps I love, save $$$ by doing so early, and celebrate the fact that for once, our summer is planned!
BUT I PAID FULL PRICE
You paid $600 for a chair 15 years ago that is now jammed in the office corner. “I paid full-price for it. I can’t just donate it!” But you can just let it clutter up your “work” room, making the whole room uncomfortable and unusable? (I say whole room because it’s rarely just one chair - see bookcase, dresser, and the nightstand to go with it). When people can tell me exactly how much they paid for something (often inflated) and how long ago it was purchased (often deflated), I know they are holding on for the wrong reasons. The purchase price and current value are never in sync. Stop placing senseless price tags and useless timelines on things that simply aren’t working for you or your home.
QUANTITY OVER QUALITY
Buying a bunch of stuff or the current “deal” inevitably leads to chaos. The 10-pack of crushed tomatoes versus the 1 can you need hog precious pantry space…for years. The buy-3-get-1-free t-shirts overcrowd the drawer when you only want the white tee. With the pantry overflowing and the t-shirt drawer impossible to open, you buy more because you can’t see what you have or it was cheap so you’ll just buy it again. Invest in only what you need - not the other 75% the store is trying to sell you.
Now look around your mind and your house. Can you find ways and places where your frugality may be affecting you?
p.s. Remember that $600 chair you bought in 2004? You know, the one holding all your dirty clothes? Post it on Next Door---for free.
Start believing in… Outer Order, Inner Calm, Gretchen Rubin’s (author of my favorite, The Happiness Project) just released book is sure to be a new favorite. BTW, if Marie Kondo’s book is sleeping unread on your nightstand, don’t buy this one, too. Time to do the work and stop thinking about reading about doing it…ahem.
Spill on…these placemats. One set of these have protected our dining room tables for 6 years now. A worthwhile investment I’d say.
Because laughter is the best medicine…watch this. A classic but guaranteed belly laugh for me every. single. time. “Spanx you” very much. (Warning men - this one is for the ladies.)