October is almost finished. How the heck did that happen!? Life goes by so fast, even when you are not trying to spend money.
I am happy to report that my results of No Spend October are in! I have one more day left tomorrow for the 31stand have no plans whatsoever to spend any money, cheap Halloween candy already purchased and ready for all the ghosts and goblins. Dollar store marshmallow candies for the win!
Let’s summarize ways that NO SPEND OCTOBER affected me and I really feel made a huge difference and so excited about how much money I saved this month.
- I used everything in the freezer. When I say I used everything, I mean I used everything. My freezer was empty. For the first two weeks of October I had a grocery bill totalling 100.00 and this included all our fresh items for the next two weeks and planned it around all the canned goods, freezer items etc. to make my meals. This is huge for our family. This inspired me so much to cook this way. I make meal plans every week and usually buy for what I need for that week. This meal plan does not consider what is in the freezer etc. This is now how I am going to go forward with meal planning. In total in October I spent 375.68 on groceries. I did an average and I usually spend approximately 250.00 a week on food. This is a huge step in the right direction and if I didn’t’ do NO SPEND OCTOBER I would have never realized it.
- No eating out. I ate out twice this month and I usually eat out at least once if not twice a week with our hectic schedule. In saying that we make smart choices when eating out but sometimes it’s just what happens. This month I ate out twice! I went out once with my sister for her birthday dinner and then once with my daughters while we were in Victoria and unexpectedly there later than planned. When we were there later than planned I could have chosen my favourite restaurant in the city and it would have cost a lot, this time we went somewhere cheap and delicious. This honestly is amazing everyone. I am so freaking proud.
- I love my coffee. I love Starbucks or anything equivalent. As a money coach I will be the first to tell you that spending your hard-earned money at Starbucks should not be a daily habit. I will also be one to tell you when you have a plan in place its ok to get Starbucks every once in a while, when making a conscious decision. I went to Starbucks twice this month!! Once I went with a gift card that I received last year and found in my desk (score!!!) and the next time I was with a friend and bought just a drip coffee, nothing fancy.
- Necessity or want? I used this question all month and I think now this is engrained in my brain. A lot of the time I will just get something if I need it, especially when it has to do with something for the family. But do I really need it? An example is my husband just got a new job, totally new career. He has gone from wearing jeans every day to dressing up. Luckily, he had some clothes already so that worked out well but we have no iron or ironing board. Long story. I thought about if we actually needed it or not, he thought we did so he asked me to pick them up. I then realized we had a setting on our dryer to “iron/fluff” clothes. We tried it. It worked perfect. We didn’t need it, we already had what we needed. Perfect.
- I returned “stuff”. I had bought sheets and a duvet set because mine was not going to get me through another winter. I bought the stuff in September. In October with my NO SPEND mentality I remembered I had an old duvet cover and sheets in our storage downstairs. Returned the bedding and received a credit. It felt soooo good!!
- Free activities! I spent a lot of time in the outdoors this month. Here on Vancouver Island we had an amazing October and I took advantage of it. I did lots of walking, hiking, going to the beach. All free activities. I also went to the movie once, with a free movie coupon and I did treat myself to some popcorn and pop for a total of $7.93. I also have a monthly yoga subscription that I do pay for every month and this is worked into my monthly plan. I did yoga online in my own living room and actually used a service I pay for! In saying that, how many subscriptions to stuff do you have online that you never use?? Have a look at your credit card, banking statements for those reoccurring payments. You will be amazed. Your welcome.
These are just a few examples but some really important ones when I really evaluated my day to day spending. I saved money! I saved a total of 824.00. Do I plan to spend this money? Heck no! This is going into my emergency savings account. I don’t want to spend money that I worked really hard on saving.
Now for the next few months we have the craziness of Christmas. I have a blog all ready to help you financially survive the holiday season, find it here http://lindaparmar.com/2018/10/19/how-to-financially-survive-the-holidays/ .The above steps will also help you save money while you are spending money at Christmas. Heck, why not NO SPEND NOVEMBER!? Anyone??