let’s talk about not spending money

I look over at the three books I bought at work on Sunday then turn back towards the word document open on my laptop. The one that reads talk about no-spend for next blog post, particularly about not buying any more books until I’ve read the ones I’ve already got.

So. Here we are. No-spend. Let’s talk about it.

As confessed, I’ve bought a few books this year when my original thinking was to only buy something new once I’d read all the ones on my shelf. I know a few books might sound like a lot, but it’s actually good for me and I don’t feel bad about the purchases I’ve made, because I held off buying them for a while to ensure they weren’t spontaneous.

In terms of other no-spend, I have bought other items recently; a bikini, a weighted blanket, some athletic clothing (I know, who am I?).

While these may seem to defeat the purpose of a no-spend year, I am proud of myself because I’m much more thoughtful about what I buy and the quality of what I’m buying.

Each purchase has been well-thought out rather than spontaneous. For instance, I used to walk in old leggings and thick shirt, but now I’m in the habit of running, I decided to reward my routine with some new leggings with a zipped section for your phone and keys, and a few running tops made of light and breathable fabric. Similarly, my old swimming costume was coming undone in places that need to be secure and I didn’t feel bad about spending a bit more money on a good quality bikini that I’ll get good wear out of.

I am very excited about my new running clothes.

I took the time to try things on at a proper sports wear shop and talked to the sales assistant about what I wanted, resulting in her showing me leggings with waistband pockets so I don’t have to awkwardly hold my phone when I run anymore. I’m a believer in not buying expensive gear to motivate yourself, but rather to buy something better quality when you know you’ll stick to it. This is why I was happy with my old leggings and shorts while I got back into the habit of exercising and now don’t feel bad about buying myself nicer things.

In terms of other items, I had some prints I wanted framed. Because I know no-spend is very strict, I’ve decided that if I do really want something, I will try and buy it from a small Australian business. While this is more expensive, it’s making me think more seriously about what the item is worth and if I want it enough to spend more money on it. I bought a few frames over Etsy which was more expensive than buying them from Big W, but I was happy to buy them and it meant I wasn’t adding random items into my cart while I shopped.

Another thing that has helped me stop spending so much is doing a big declutter a few weeks ago. I haven’t decluttered my room for a while because I donated so much stuff before I moved out and I’ve never been much of a hoarder. But I have so much more space where I live now and it’s easy to fill those gaps without realizing it. So I went through everything again and donated more things or asked my siblings if they wanted any books I didn’t want anymore. Clearing away those things and having more free space in my room has made me not want to buy more because I don’t want to fill those tidy spaces with stuff I don’t like or use.

All in all, I’m definitely a more conscious shopper now and have stopped buying random things, which is what we want. Even though my no-spend-year was actually a let’s-spend-year, I feel good about the choices I’m making and I think that will continue because I’ve grown good habits.

Sarah xx

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