When my Mom asked me what I wanted for Christmas this year the answer came to me quickly – not another thing.
I‘m not sure exactly when it happened, but for the past decade I have been a model consumer – I see something I want, and I go buy it. I guess I could trace this shift in my spending habits back to when I started making decent money at my current job.
It’s a hard habit to curb, because the need for instant gratification is so intense both in my own life and in society today. When I was growing up we never shopped because we were “bored” but now it seems like everyone jokingly drops $200 when they go out to get paper towels and come home with a cart full of things they didn’t know they needed. That isn’t a very sustainable budgeting technique but I completely understand how it happens!
I made a resolution this year – no shopping for clothing, shoes or bags all year.
When I told my friends about this they were skeptical and some thought that it was the saddest most horrible idea on the planet. They may be right but I looked back at my budget and I spent over five thousand dollars on shopping last year.
Now, of course I make sure my kids are dressed and that includes presents but I know darn well most of that was me at the outlets. I feel guilty knowing that would money could have gone to an amazing family vacation or invested for the future.
However, feeling bad about the past doesn’t change anything that already happened. It also isn’t a great motivator to change my ways so my plan is to stick to my resolution, write about it (to keep me busy and sane) and end the year with a bigger bank account.
I’m glad that you’re coming with me on this journey – it’s easier to tackle a big goal like this knowing I have people to cheer me on and hold me accountable.