Don’t lie to me. I know you spend money on shit.
You had to get your nails done because you had a bad day, and why should your nails suffer too?
You needed a new white top, to go with that blue skirt, because otherwise the skirt wouldn’t get worn, and that would be more wasteful.
You buy a fancy $20 cocktail because, well, YOLO.
I know, because I do this too. We all do. We live in a consumer society, surrounded by things to buy and people convincing us to buy them. I don’t have any magic solution for that – except escaping to an ashram, and really, can you imagine the hair and wardrobe options in rural India? Exactly.
But we can all do a little better. We can all learn a little thrift. And why is this important? Because it takes a lot of damn effort to earn money. And there are things you really want to do with that money – things that give you joy, or meaning, or opportunity, or security.
Meaning every dollar you don’t waste on crap is something you can spend on the good things. I know, sounds obvious.
So we need to spend consciously. To consider if something is in line with our goals, priorities or even just our genuine pleasure.
Buying your friend a drink is a nice feeling and a great way to bond. Dropping a hundred bucks at the bar because you decided to do shots all night? No.
Buying a killer dress to wear to a friend’s wedding, because your ex will be there? A sensible choice IMO. Buying something from a cheapy Chinese shop in your lunch hour, because you’re PMSing like a bitch, and then realising it actually clings to your lovely lady lumps a bit too much? No.
Think about what matters to you. Goals are good: whether it’s a holiday or a good retirement, having a goal lets you do a calculation. “Would I rather drink wine in Rome or buy another pair of shoes that hurt my feet?”.
Think about what you love and allocate resources to that. I fucking LOVE eating breakfast out. I’d rather spend $25 on that, rather than a bottle of house wine on a Wednesday night (that will make me feel seedy as a tin of raspberry jam the next day). But maybe you really like wine Wednesday. That’s cool. Just make your own toast on a Sunday.
But girl, please, don’t do both, every time. A sense of entitlement to every indulgence that comes your way is a one-way ticket to poverty-ville.
Your spending manifesto
Now write some things down. Give yourself a manifesto. This not that. Poached eggs not prosecco.
Fact is, you can’t have everything you want. Soz!
So deal with that, and decide what you want the most. Be mindful. Be smart. And be a fucking tight-arse when it comes to allocating the money you bust your arse for at work.