In five-ish days, I’ll embark on Frugalwoods’ Uber Frugal July Challenge. Even though I’ll have a fair number of unavoidable expenses related to moving (and probably an equal number of avoidable ones) a month-long frugal challenge will hopefully ameliorate the damage and help me focus my spending and saving on what is most important to me.
In preparation for a month of extreme frugality, Mrs. Frugalwoods suggests the following five questions to help participants set their goals. Below are the questions and my answers.
- Why are you participating in this challenge?
I have a lot of expenses coming up and a lot of temptation to spend money where I
don’t necessarily need to out of a sense of nostalgia and probably fear of the uncertain immediate future. I want to mitigate unnecessary spending so that I can enjoy the experiences I do choose to spend money on without guilt. I want to be able to enjoy the experiences I’ve already committed to (#Barcelona), and also feel like I”ll be okay financially when I get back and am job hunting.
- What do you hope to achieve?
I want to end this challenge feeling like my spending was deliberate and like I have set myself up for success in the fall. I also want to return to a practice of thoughtful attention to my finances, which I think this challenge (and blogging about it) will achieve.
- What are your long term life goals?
Buy a house, have a kid, stop working or work for myself in another way. Write and publish things. Work with teens.
- Where do you want to be in ten years?
Ideally I’d like to have all the things listed in #3.
- What about your current lifestyle might prevent those goals from coming to fruition and what can you do about it?
I really don’t save enough right now to make those things happen. On my own, I don’t know that I’d ever have enough money to buy a house. I spend more time (and money) enjoying myself with friends (which is valuable, not knocking friends here, just questioning my spending) than I do working on my own passion projects. I say yes to immediate experiences rather than long term goals.
I suppose I can mind map a little more to be really clear on my goals and then stick to my guns and not go over my “fun” budget. I could be honest about what I’m feeling to my friends and let them know that I’m feeling tight on funds and I want to spend quality time with them, that they’re more important than whatever we’re doing that takes money. I could say no to things or propose alternatives.
My intention is to blog each day about how the challenge is going, and respond to the daily mantra or action. I think this will help me stay focused and get more out of the experience, and leave me with some long term changes.
Wish me luck! Click here to sign up for your own frugal month challenge!