You could be scrolling through Facebook, checking an email, or even driving along the street, but one thing is certain. You are bombarded with enticing messages to spend money every day.
Whether it’s that dress you were eyeing, or a new TV that’s been discounted for “one day only”, or just a quick stop in the drive thru, impulse spending is easier than ever. However, spending $5-20 here and there can add up very quickly. Before you know it, you’re way over your budget, and you have no idea how you got there. Here are some quick and easy ways to check yourself before making impulse purchases.
While there are perks to credit and debit cards, having a separate cash fund for fun purchases can help keep your spending in check. Have a set amount each month that you think is reasonable for frivolous spending, and take out the cash. This way you can see it depleting day-to-day, and you can keep yourself in check on how to use your “fun money” for the month.
Wait Overnight before Making the Purchase
Online shopping is fun, but we’ve all had those moments where we look in our cart, and there are more items than we originally thought. Instead of pressing checkout, close the window and come back to it the next day. This will help you discern if it’s an item worth buying outside of the quick moment you added it to your cart.
Opt Out of Emails
We love emails that contain coupons and deals of the day, but even too many deals can add up. Unsubscribe from some of your tech or apparel companies that dump their merchandise in your inbox each day. This eliminates daily temptations, and you can always visit their site when you have a particular item in mind that you want to purchase.
While the natural way one might think to treat themselves is by gifting themselves with a new purchase, think of free ways to make yourself feel good or reward yourself. Check out community calendars for concerts, art museums, or check out a book at the library. If you want to have a special date night, purchase some groceries to cook with your loved one. You can even shake things up and take a look at your liquor collection and have a contest on who can make the best martini.
It’s easier than ever to make purchases today with the ease of our credit cards or technology, but keep in mind that you have goals to meet! Gaining control of your impulse spending may feel like it hurts in the moment, but your wallet will thank you in the long run.