So remember last month when I saved so much money? Well, apparently that translated into some rewarding behaviors, a little extra socializing here, a lunch out there, and I’ve spent a lot more in the first ten days of December than I did in the first part of November. We are still a long way from the new year, and if I expect to get there in the black, I need to slow down my consumption. This is especially true since we have some unpaid holiday days at the end of the month, so my income will lower than last month as well. It is time to buckle down and start saving.
Step 1: Obviously no more eating out. I’ve enjoyed my last beer for the month, or at least until I’m in the clear around the 25th. We’re back to rice and beans rations until further notice.
Step 2: I’m hoping that the tank of gas I bought today will last me until the end of the month. I know that sounds crazy, but I think I can avoid driving to work for the next three days, and hopefully next week I’ll only need to drive one day, and then I’m in the clear for pretty much the rest of the month. It’ll be a stretch, but who doesn’t like a challenge?
Step 3: Defer. Defer. Defer. In “What Would Jesus Buy?” a debt counselor talks about the questions she gives to clients to help them with their addictions. Why am I here? Do I need this item? How will I pay for it? What will happen if I wait? Where will I put it? Even just one of these questions (especially “where will I put it?”) is usually enough to stop me in my tracks, but I’m going to focus the rest of the month on, “what will happen if I wait?” For the most part, nothing. Nothing is going to happen if I wait to order a new pair of glasses. Nothing is going to happen if I wait to go out for coffee until the next time I get paid, or if I wait to make some purchases until after the new year. Basically, I need to stop resting on last month’s laurels and work on saving saving saving now.
This is practically the finish line. I can almost hear my coach shouting, “finish strong!” Wish me luck.