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Friday, July 22, 2011

True Traits of a Tightwad- Tenacity

Yea, a little bit of alliteration going on there in the title, but I guess its a funky way to announce a new series on my blog.
So many times recently, when I haven't had the physical energy or mental capacity to write out a whole blog post, I got an idea for a blog post, something that hopefully can help you readers be more frugal. And surprisingly, most of these ideas fit into one specific category- character traits that help people be as frugal as possible. I've decided to make a series highlighting these traits, in the hopes that if you possess these traits, you'll be able to focus them towards frugality, and if you don't have these traits, you can do a little soul work and try to acquire these, because they're very beneficial for life in general, not just for those wishing to live a frugal lifestyle.
Originally this series was gonna be Traits of a Tightwad Tuesday, but since I know that at this stage in my life I can't count on my being able to blog consistently every Tuesday, I'm just going to write more posts in this series whenever the muse strikes me.

The trait I wanted to focus on today is tenacity. Of course, I could always call this trait "Not giving up", but it's always better to phrase things in a positive way, as opposed to just a whole bunch of rules of "Don't"s.

Thomas Edison tried 99 different models that all failed in his attempt to make a light bulb. 99 different times he put hard work into an invention and watched it fail. If he gave up then, who knows if we'd have light bulbs today, because it was only on the 100th time that he succeeded.

While frugality isn't quite the same as being an inventor, at times you may end up with the same frustration that Thomas Edison likely experienced when you try to take certain frugal measures and end up constantly bashing your head into a brick wall.
At times like this, I try to sing to myself the song "I get knocked down, but I get up again... Never gonna keep me down."


Whether your trying to stick to a budget didn't work, or jerry rigging something up to help you save you money, or whatever it may be... just because it didn't work once, or twice, or even three times doesn't mean it's a lost cause.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results, so instead of just repeating your failed attemps, try to figure out why it didn't work the first time, and then try again.
But don't just give up!

I must have made at least 15 different attempts at making a solar cooker. My first one worked, but after we moved and I had to start from scratch, it took me at least 14 more attempts to get a solar cooker that actually cooked my food. Each time I tweaked it a drop, and my persistence paid off- I now have a fully functional solar cooker!

Now I'm trying to learn how to make real, authentic Ethiopian injera flatbread, as it is made with a gluten free (and fortunately not horrendously priced) flour called teff, and I really want to be able to have a flat bread to eat with spreads, etc... and I haven't been having much success... I've tried three times, and each time its getting a bit better, but still not how it is supposed to be.
But no, three failed attempts won't make me give up.
I've got tenacity.
I know that by persisting, even after repeated failure, I'll eventually have success and be really happy that I found a frugal gluten free bread to serve my family.

Acquiring the trait of tenacity, of not giving up in the face of adversity, is a skill beneficial for everyone, but especially wanna be frugalistas. 

Are you the type to give up after one or two failed attempts, or to stick it out for the long haul, despite failures?
Are you the type with tenacity, and if so, how has it helped you be more frugal?

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