Sunday, January 10, 2010
I used to use my debit card when I went shopping. Each time I draw cash from the bank I have to pay a service charge so I liked to avoid that. (I don't use credit cards, don't even own them, as they tempt too much by making you think that you have free money. Its not free, and spending money you don't have because you have a credit card is one way to land yourself in credit card debt misery. I'll gladly avoid that.)
I realized, however, that when I used my card I didn't always realize how much money I had and how much I was spending. Or even if I realized how much I was spending, I always justified it by saying "So what if I spent a few more dollars than I was planning on spending? Its only a few bucks." But then those few dollars added up and I was always wondering to where all my money was disappearing.
I started drawing cash out of the bank to use on grocery shopping. I still pay the service charge for each time I draw money from the bank, so I prefer to draw all the cash I'll need for the next month outof the bank. Each time I go to the grocery, I take 50 dollars with me. This way I am not tempted to spend more than my allotted 50 dollars on a grocery shopping. I mean, I am tempted, but when it comes to necessities or wants, I'll put back that little splurge if my grocery shop ended up coming out more than 50 dollars, but keep it in the cart if I was able to keep my shop within 50 dollars even with the splurge.
Lately I've noticed that my shops usually come out to be less than 50 dollars each. In fact, just last tuesday I shared my shopping list for 2 weeks that was bought for under 45 dollars!
Because of this, I think I will limit myself to only 35 dollars a week, or 70 dollars for my two week shoppings.
By bringing cash for my shopping, it makes me rethink frivolous purchases and makes me put back things that I shouldn't be wasting my money on. By bringing a limited amount of cash, I limit myself to buying what I need and not being lured into buying impulse buys by seeing those inticing sales on completely unneccessary products in the fronts of stores.
If I see something on sale that I would otherwise buy, and it is on a major sale, I will stock up on them but still not try to go overboard. With my new cash limit on groceries, if I see something that I will use with a very good sale, I will allow myself to spend up to 7 extra dollars on these sale items so that way I don't end up spending more by buying as needed when these foods are not on sale.
Penniless Parenting's rule number 5- Pay for things in cash whenever possible. It makes you rethink your spending. Bring only as much cash as you think you'll need so you're not tempted to go overboard.