Are you Tired of Being Frugal?

Have you been living on a tight budget and are tired of being frugal?

tired of being frugal

Oh man, do I hear ya.  I’ve been there.  I’ve been at the point where I’m so sick of counting my pennies (or should I say, nickels here in Canada because we no longer have pennies) that I just want to give the frugal life up.

I’ve been to the point where I’ve wanted to throw it all away and spend recklessly.  I mean, is it worth it to live this life of frugality?

Well, first of all, yes it is.  I know it can feel exhausting.  I know you can feel discouraged as you sit on your old, outdated secondhand furniture in your secondhand clothes, eating pasta again for the third night this week because that is the only way you can stay within budget.

A couple years ago I received one of the wisest pieces of advice from a friend when it comes to finances. She told me that if you keep going the way we were going (living frugally and being careful with our money) that in ten years we would be in a very different place and it would pay off (literally).  However, she pointed out that if we chose not to live frugally, in ten years there is a good chance we’d be no further ahead.  Possibly even behind.

That advice really stuck with me.  It’s hard to see the bigger picture when it feels like you are making progress at a snail’s pace no matter how hard you try.  You might be paying down debt and making wise choices, but then your van breaks down.  Or you need a new furnace. Or your laptop you need for work breaks down and needs replacing.  Or you need snow tires because you live in Canada.

All three of those has happened to us this year.  All unexpected costs.

So while we are making progress on our finances, those things that pop up can make us feel like it doesn’t matter how hard we try, we just end up taking one step forward and two steps back.

While it may feel like that, the truth is, the more we work towards living frugally, the better off we are when those situations arise. Sure, we may not have been able to pay off as much debt as we had hoped to during this year, but we aren’t further behind than when we started out at the beginning of the year.

And progress, no matter how slow, is STILL progress.

That being said, what do you do when you are so discouraged, your mind starts telling you to stop caring?  To throw away all your progress because, hey, other people live with piles of debt and are doing okay, so why even bother?

It’s worth the effort because less debt, or no debt, I believe gives us a sense of peace.  Living within our means helps us stay grounded.  it reminds us to be thankful for what we DO have.

However, we are all human, and it’s understandable to go through times where we want to spend money that we don’t have on ourselves.  The objective during those times is to have a plan to prevent damaging your progress in those weak moments.

Today I am going to give you some tips on how to deal with frugal fatigue.

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU ARE TIRED OF BEING FRUGAL

Stay out of the stores.  Obviously you can’t afford the stores completely, but why go where the temptation is the strongest?  When I am not in the stores I am not thinking about what I want or what I don’t have.  Try to limit your trips to the store to groceries and the necessities.  No window shopping.

Treat yourself to something small.  Key word here is “small.” It’s hard to not spend money for so long.  treat yourself to something like a Starbucks coffee, or a cheap eBook.  My husband loves to buy eBooks from an independent author on the site Smashwords.  Every once in awhile he treats himself to an eBook that costs less than 5 dollars.  It doesn’t break the budget, but it gives him a treat.  For me, my treat is definitely the Starbucks coffee. 🙂

Take a break from social media.  It is easy to get stuck into the comparison trap when you browse social media for too long.  While there are so many benefits that the internet gives us, it comes with it’s downfalls.  One of those is that we get to see everyone’s new items that they bought, or their vacation pictures, or their big, beautiful houses.

It’s easy to compare our lives to those we see on social media.  Of course, we need to remember that what we see on social media is the highlight reel of someone’s life.  Generally none of us are displaying all our low moments.  We need to remember that we often compare our low moments to someone’s high moments, but the truth of the matter is, everyone’s life has both.

This is definitely true when it comes to what we all have and own.  No one is sharing the debt they may have accumulated with their new purchase, or the trades or sacrifices they had to make to buy what they have.  We need to focus on our own financial journey and not compare it to those around us.

When you find yourself comparing too much, it may be time to take a break from social media for a time.  Time away from it all online allows us to remind ourselves what is important for our own lives, and why we are doing what we are doing financially, which in turn will help us in those moments that we are tired of being frugal.

Re-evaluate your situation.  If you are constantly feeling like your finances are extremely tight, it may be time to re-evaluate your budget.  Is it realistic? Are you trying to save too much?  Could you benefit from a little wiggle room?  Putting money towards savings or debt is very important, but if you are putting a very large chunk of your paycheque to this, you may want to consider cutting back just a little.  Obviously you want to make sure you are still putting money towards these things, but just make sure you are being realistic.

Place your goals where you can see them.  Write down your goals and display them where you will see them all the time.  This will remind you why you are living frugally.  Keep reminding yourself that you are giving up what you want now for what you want even more some day.

Keep a gratitude journal.  It is a good practice to remind ourselves what we DO have instead of only focusing what we don’t have.  Write down things you are thankful for.  chances are, this will allow you to focus on the blessings in your life and in turn, you won’t be so focused on what you want and don’t have.

EVEN WHEN SUFFERING FRUGAL FATIGUE, DON’T GIVE UP

When you are tired of being frugal it’s easy to want to give up, but if you keep doing what you are doing, chances are it will pay off in the end.  Keep your eye on the goal and give yourself room to breathe when need be.  In a year or two you will look back and be thankful you stayed the course.

 

Related: What IS Frugality?

4 thoughts on “Are you Tired of Being Frugal?”

  1. Once a month we go out to Cracker Barrel for breakfast which feels completely frivolous to us since hey, I could make this same breakfast that I just paid $25 plus for at home for $2-3. It is our splurge every month and we just purely enjoy it and so we feel okay about being frugal all the rest of the month. We are on a fixed income so it does not change so we need to keep a good attitude about our finances since we have a lot of years to be retired ahead of us.

    1. That sounds lovely! It is definitely good to make time and space for those moments. We don’t have Cracker Barrel here in Canada but we make sure to go there whenever we go to the States! I think it is so important to treat ourselves once in awhile so we can stay the course the rest of the month!

  2. Prioritizing is very important, I think.
    If the situation and economy allows for it, and you can do it within reason and responsibility, then I’d say to everyone to spend a little on what makes you and your family happy. Even with a small income, one can find small golden moments. Do you like frozen yoghurt on a beach cafe? Go for it but skip the Sunday roast that week and have a simpler meal. Does your family really want to go to the zoo or an amusement park this summer? Make it for someone’s birthday and let that be the celebration. Exchanging one thing for another more enjoyable is fine, as long as you stay within your fixed means.

    Do put your available money where they make you a. the safest AND b. the happiest!

    1. Definitely wise words. We all need a little happiness and sometimes that costs money! They key is to manage your money well enough that you have enough to use it on those things you love!

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