How do you change bad spending habits?

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  • #974

    One piece of financial advice that has stuck with me over the years is the idea that shopping can be entertainment. If you’re bored and want to get out for a few hours, why not hit the mall? If you’re working on something boring and want to browse Etsy or, why not?

    I thought I went shopping when I needed something specific, but then I really looked at my shopping history. I realized that there was some entertainment going on. I had way too many reminders to “rate your purchase” in my inbox. There was no way I had that many needs.

    I hated the idea of shopping as entertainment and wanted to change my ways, without going as far as freezing my credit cards in a block of ice.

    Here are a few changes I made that helped me save money and break bad spending habits.

    Make a no-buy list
    I looked in my closet, on my coffee table and on my desk to create a list of things I absolutely did not need to buy for the next six months. This included:

    • Cute socks
    • Candles
    • Scarves
    • Nice pens
    • Blank writing books
    • Craft books
    • Fabric
    • Yarn
    • Any book I could get at the library

    Whenever I was tempted, I pulled out my list. I kept it on my phone. I had enough discipline to get through six months and by then I didn’t always think, “Oh, that’s cute, let’s buy it,” when I saw one of those items in a shop.

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