Monday, February 1, 2016

FINANCIAL DETOX FOR A SHOPAHOLIC

Image via Pinterest

Well ladies and gentleman I made it through.  30 days of financial detox and I’m still alive and my bank account is happier for it.  To quickly recap I’ve named this “My Year of Choosing the Bigger Life” (you can check out the full post HERE) and am dedicating each month to a goal that in someway enriches my life and pushes me out of my comfort zone.  So this month was all about the benjamins.  I outlined all my financial goals in this post, but to quickly review I wanted to…

1. Look at past spending habits (even if it isn’t pretty) and use this to create a budget for myself and stick to it.
2. When I do make a purchase only buy things I deem investment items.
3. Track all of my spending. 
4. Call my bank and have a certain amount of money automatically transferred to my savings account each time I get paid.

So how did I do?  I was successfully able to meet most of my goals, but definitely struggled in one area.  First for the things that went well…I was able to build a strict budget for myself with the help of some great blog articles (Loved this one from The Everygirl.) I looked at my past spending habits, listed all of my fixed expenses for the month and outlined savings goals while still giving myself some “play” money.   I found this extremely helpful and it kept me from spending blindly and winging it, which for some reason I thought was a grand idea in the past.  I was also successful in tracking all of my spending using an app ironically called Spending.  Although cumbersome at times because I had to manually put in all of my expenses, I loved this app for it’s ability to graph and categorize all of my spending and it let me easily see where my money was going and some areas I could cut back on.  For me, that was definitely eating out.  Work lunches and spicy margaritas on the weekend really add up! My last achievement was getting my bank to automatically transfer some money into my savings every time I got paid.  I couldn’t believe how easy it was to set this up, I was seriously on the phone with the bank teller for two minutes and it was done.  It’s been so nice to see my money (though small) incrementally build up over time and I seriously didn’t even miss it!  

Ok so now for the area I failed miserably in.  I tried, I really tried to limit my purchases to only investment pieces and just couldn't do it guys.  I seriously need to stay out of Ulta and Nordstrom, actually let’s make that shopping establishments altogether.  While I didn’t spend much money on extraneous items I did make small purchases here and there that added up and could have been used for an investment piece.  My money would have been much better spent on those Vince Camuto Booties that are great quality and I know I would get a ton of wear out of instead of that TopShop crop top I just "had" to have and beauty purchases at Target and Ulta.  I’m kind of lost as to what to do to curb these impulsive purchases, but a tip a reader left me that I loved was to ask yourself “Do I actually love it and do I really need it? “ before making a purchase.  Someone else recommended leaving an item on hold and if you still want it the next day you can go back for it.  Both amazing ideas and I can’t thank you guys enough for all the great suggestions I received over the past month! 

If I have learned anything this month it is the importance of having an emergency fund and looking at the bigger picture when it comes to your finances.  By mapping out my long term goals and pin pointing what’s really important to me (traveling, paying off my student loans, buying a house eventually) it has made me much more cognizant of how I’m spending my money.  Thank you again for following along with me on this journey and if you want to check out any of the other money related content from this month I added the posts below.  Also, check back tomorrow to see what I have in store for February! Here's a hint, there will be a lot of vegetables involved and me crying over pinot grigio.

xoxo Nicole

1 comment:

  1. I definitely think not spending is going to be the hardest part. Great job meeting your other goals though! It's all about those little victories!! *internet high five*

    She Likes to Shop

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