Top Twelve Tips To Improve Frugal Finances

tips reduce spending improve personal finances fiscal fitness

It's easier than ever to overspend these days, and the pressure to keep up with the Jones (on social media) by living beyond your financial means. The top tips below are designed to help you exercise self-control in spending and build a secure your fiscal future for yourself and your family. If you are a spendthrift, it's possible that you have low self-esteem, that your marriage could be in danger and your relationships permanently damaged. Worse, you will lose your ability to live the way you really want to live. Implement these steps to assume control over your finances, and build a secure fiscal future for yourself and your family. 

LOOK FOR THE SYMPTOMS 

You feel guilty about spending even on legitimate essentials. You lie to your spouse about how much you have spent. Your credit card debts are piling up. You have no idea where your money goes and cannot keep track of how much has been spent on what. If you have any of these symptoms, you need to mend that hole in your wallet, very urgently. 

TALK ABOUT IT 

Talk to your spouse. If unmarried, speak to a friend or someone you trust. If you've been lying to your spouse about your purchases, confessing will make the burden lighter. Apologize and sincerely express your desire to mend your ways. Your confidant will help you in your endeavor. 

WRITE IT DOWN 

The fact that you have been overspending shows that you never make the connection between your income and your outgoings. Make a note of every purchase will hold you accountable for it. Magically, you will spend less money as you see the figures of your expenditure rising. 

CUT UP YOUR CREDIT CARD 

When you pay with plastic, you don't see any money leaving your hands and you forget momentarily that you are just deferring payment. The fact is that you have to make that payment tomorrow. You may be having too many credit cards. One is more than enough. Cut up the others. If you can't trust yourself to use even one credit card wisely, destroy that one too. It will ensure that you buy only when you have cash. 

STUDY YOUR SPENDING 

When do you tend to spend the most? Is it when you are depressed or when you are hungry or when you want to lift your mood? You could be spending to alleviate your depression or satiate your hunger, without knowing it. Check every receipt, record every purchase and detect what made you buy what you did. 

ASK YOURSELF SOME TOUGH QUESTIONS 

List your priorities. For example, you may need to join the health club or enlist in a weight reduction program and may have to forego it because you've sent all that money at a mall. Ask yourself how you are going to feel when your credit card bills arrive and whether the items you bought were necessary in the first place. Ask yourself whether you are closer to any of the goals that you set up for yourself. That way you'll think before you spend. 

STOP IMPULSE BUYING 

Decide that you will not buy anything on impulse. Don't go window shopping or walk into a mall to just 'look'. Doing so will surely lead to some reckless, uncalled-for spending. 

WAIT IT OUT 

Promise yourself that you will wait for a whole day or two days before you buy something you think you need. Ask yourself time and again whether you truly need it or whether you are indulging yourself. The waiting itself dilutes the urge and helps it pass. 

PLAN YOUR SPENDING 

You should never carry a burden of guilt for your spending. That can happen only when you plan your spending and buy only what is necessary. Ask yourself, "Do I need this, or do I want this?" Have a personal budgeting system and keep an emergency fund for unforeseen expenses. 

CREATE A REALISTIC BUDGET 

Put aside some money at the very beginning of the month, when you receive your pay packet, as savings. Then, keep aside money for your fixed outgoings like groceries, electricity, milk, rent, loans, utilities, etc. Then, establish how much you have to spend each week on everything apart from these fixed expenses. Withdraw the money you will need every Monday and make it last all through the week. This will keep you aware of where your money is being spent and you will be more thoughtful and careful about spending it. Fix a spending limit for every week and stick to it. 

AVOID SALES 

Just because there is a sale in the local mall or ecommerce website does not mean that you should attend it. It's foolish to buy things you don't need just because you see a good bargain somewhere, because, in the long run, it's going to be a bad deal for you and only lead to financial disaster. 

MAKE A LIST 

Even when you go to buy essentials, take a list of things you have to buy. Ensure that you go only to those counters which stock these and don't meander through aisles looking at stuff that's not on your list. That helps you from picking up those extra pickle bottles or the new flavor of drink that you know is inessential. Be clear, focused and not distracted from your intended purchases. If, after making the effort, you find that you are unable to deal with your spending addiction, seek help. A counselor will get to the root cause of your problem. 

FRUGAL FINANCE

Once you identify the problem, you will stop spending as a balm to your mental state. Seek the advice of a financial expert to put your books in order. He or she may have helpful insights that you may not have thought of. Once you reduce your spending, you will sail smoothly towards financial security and wise investments for a well provided for future.

Spending money recklessly can be hard to over-take. There are things you can do to curb over-spending and feel better about yourself. There are many people who just can`t control their spending habits. And this only becomes a problem when other areas in life begin to suffer. This suffering can be intrinsic, financial or just in general whether it`s with family, friends or work. There are often reasons why someone has the need to spend and it`s often when those issues are addressed, that the over-spending stops. Spending money can become like an addiction. It can be so habit forming that it becomes who you are and what your routine looks like. You might be in the habit of going to the store and buying whatever you like and over buying on things, just because you can at the time. Often a shopper with a problem will buy on impulse and will buy in quantity or quality. That means that they may be able to buy four dresses without trying them on, or they may have no thoughts against buying an item not needed even when it costs too much money. Feeling like you have an addiction to spending money means that after you make your purchases, you feel over-whelmed with guilt and grief. You might get home and not even know what possessed you to buy some of the things you did, but might feel too ashamed to take them back. When you have family members and friends that are questioning your spending money, you might have some insight into what they see. Often you may not notice how other people view you because they do not say anything, but when they do voice an opinion, it may be time to listen to what they have to say. Spending money on items that you may not need can take a heavy financial burden on you and your family. 

You might be neglecting on important items or bills in order to pay for impulsive items. This kind of stress can put a heavy toll on someone living alone, or in a family. Financial stress is one of the number one causes behind divorces. There might be a breaking point, where your family breaks up, or your financial walls have come crumbling down around you where you address that you need help. There are ways to battle the addiction of over-spending and it just takes some quick soul searching. Many times buying items comforts us in some way. It makes us feel good to buy new items and spend money, there is a little piece of heaven attached to it. However, you have to ask yourself if you only buy things when you need comforting. This is an important issue to address. Do you run to the mall when you feel bad about something? Do you over spend on groceries when you know you can`t afford it? 

FINAL WORDS FOR FISCAL FITNESS

Some strict self-discipline needs to take place for change to occur. You can talk with your doctor about seeing someone for counseling to deal with the emotional issues. You can also contact your bank and make an appointment to talk to someone. Your banking professional can give you a monthly budget and help you look at ways to pay off bills and save money. Often changing the way you think, can alter your spending desires. Take a temporary second job and start collecting the money in a separate account. When you go shopping you will begin to think about the items you are buying and how much they cost and how much work you had to do to pay for those individual items. Start to buy the things you need with just cash, leave the debit or credit card and checkbook at home to find other ways to comfort yourself within your fiscal fitness financial means. Focus on the needs and not the wants to improve your bank account, credit, and overall personal frugal finances.

Fiscal Fitness Finds: New Frugal Finance Posts: