Most of my stitching progress this month is from late January and early February. However my budget is going well, with my second no spend month. This year I have started a budget plan and will be trying various techniques to curb my spending in all areas of my life.
|Lickle Ted - Christmas Stitch Kit - The World of Cross Stitching|
|Somebunny to Love - The World of Cross Stitching Issue 179|
|Dimensions Gold - Elegance of the Orient|
|HAED - Bridge of Wings|
|Lavender & Lace - Celtic Spring|
The first technique I have tested is a reward system. Each week that I manage to make no unnecessary purchases I add a small amount to a fund jar. This will go towards a large treat at the end of the year. I had to ensure that the reward was neither too big nor too small. Too big and I would find it difficult to find it in my regular budget, too small and it wouldn't feel worth it.
The first lesson I have learned with this technique is never reward yourself in advance. If you decided to give yourself a reward of €5/$5/£5, whatever your currency is, but you reach the end of the week and find that you only have a 10, don't use that for this and next week's goal. Little compromises with myself, like this, is how these attempts at change have collapsed in the past. As soon as I compromise once, it makes it difficult not to do so again.
I am finding this a useful way to keep myself on track. I do have to be very clear about what is an unnecessary spend, for this exercise it is anything I do not need to survive. Here is an example of an unnecessary spend I made recently is, my phone has been crashing apps and become intolerably slow. I decided I would replace it as I use it regularly. Although my old phone was not able to perform the functions I needed to an acceptable standard, it still functioned. Therefore I considered the purchase of the new one as unnecessary and missed out on my reward. As a new phone is a large expense, I debated whether I would forgo my reward for a few weeks, however I decided against such a harsh measure, as it was only a matter of time before my old handset needed replacing.
Do you have any tips or tricks you use to help you stop spending? Please let me know in the comments below. I would be interested in trying them out.