Back at the beginning of January Huebie and I undertook the challenge of only spending money on the necessities: food, gas bills. No Starbucks, no toys or clothes for Little A, no items for the home. You can read the original post HERE.
We started the month strong but then let’s be honest, it really turned into like 3 weeks vs a whole month. If you rewind to January 18th, the Seahawks won the NFC Championship to head back to the Super Bowl, which kind of threw a wrench in our no spend month. We actually did pretty well until we got to Phoenix on January 29th.
Successes: I was really concerned when we decided to do this. I honestly didn’t think it could be done. But taking the time to focus inward and on what we already have was actually easier than I thought it would be. We cleaned and purged a few things, spent more time focusing on our businesses and planning for when we could finally spend money, haha!
And after the first week, I really didn’t feel like I was missing out on anything. I mean yes, I was making a list of things I wanted/needed to get in February (new skinny jeans, bows for A’s hair, sunglasses), but it could wait. And honestly, a lot of what I had on the list (specifically those 3 items) will probably get pushed another month. There isn’t much that’s so urgent that I need it right now. I feel like I can better appreciate what I have. And that’s a really great feeling.
It also made me realize what an instant gratification society we are. We want everything right now, and if we have to wait for shipping over 2 days we aren’t happy. And I am 100% guilty of being a part of this. I mean on Saturday, Amazon offered same day shipping for Prime members. Same day shipping! Huebie ordered something that morning and by like 3:00 it was at our door! That’s just crazy to me. I mean it’s cool, but what in life do you need so badly that you must have same day delivery?! Whatever happened to patience?!
Challenges: The unexpected. A few days into the month I was invited to a baby shower for one of my dear friends and I hadn’t gotten her shower gift yet. And the shower was on the 24th, so it wasn’t like I could push the purchase off to February. That was the one time we had to dip into the no go zone and spend some money. But obviously, totally worth it.
Other challenges were Little A wanting things. She obviously had no idea what we were talking about when we said it was no spend January, or no Spenduary as Huebie titled it. It’s hard for a 3 year old to grasp that we can’t get her that ducky she wants so bad, and that we would probably normally get her because let’s be honest, the girl gets new ducks on a monthly basis. #duckhoarder
Total Savings: Not counting the money we spent in Phoenix, we saved over $1,000 in January by focusing our spending on only the necessities (food, bills, gas). I mean holy cow! That’s over $12,000 a year! And it really wasn’t that hard! I could definitely see us doing this again at some point; maybe even later in the year.
This also made me question where the heck that money went! I can tell you a lot of what we spend our money on, but not $1000 worth of spending. I’m taking serious inventory of my expenses and taking a good hard look at what I spend each month now. I’m going to try to stay away from mindless shopping and only go when I have an exact list of what I need. And I want to stick to the list. I am the WORST when it comes to shopping just to shop. I just go and have no idea what I want, and I end up spending $100 when I went in not needing anything. No more I tell you! Little A and I will go on walks around the block instead of walks through Target.
Question of the day: If you’ve done a no spend month (or no spend weeks), how much did you save?! Would you do it again?