One of the easiest ways to rein in your spending is by identifying any situations or circumstances that trigger you to want to buy things. When you avoid these triggers, you will be a lot less tempted to spend too much money, making it easier to keep your finances in order. To start taking control of your spending habits today, consider whether or not these factors influence your desire to spend:
The Hour Of The Day
Shopping when you are tired or stressed out is almost always a bad idea. Generally, you will spend less if you wait to shop until you are energized and alert. For most people, certain times of the day are better than others. Evaluate how you feel during the day to determine when you are the most likely to overspend.
Your surroundings can influence your spending habits, as well. Impulse buys are far more likely to occur if you spend your time at the mall, visiting bazaars or craft shows, or walking through boutiques while on vacation. There are a couple of ways that you can control this problem. One option is to avoid visiting stores or situations like these. The other option is to limit the amount of money that you bring with you so that you can't spend too much.
Spending time at your favorite store is almost always a recipe for disaster. The temptation to hunt for bargains is far too strong. If you have to go to that store, however, limit your access to your money so that you can't spend more than you intended.
Your mood is one of the biggest factors that come into play when determining whether or not you will overspend. When you are stressed out, overwhelmed, or angry, the temptation to buy something is much higher. Rather than seeking instant gratification through shopping, consider working out or taking a walk. Exercise is one of the most effective ways to deal with negative emotions.
Some positive feelings can also increase the likelihood of spending too much. Track your buying habits for a couple of weeks, making note of your emotional state every time you make a purchase. This will help you identify which moods or emotions influence your shopping habits the most.
A Desire To Fit In
Spending time with your friends is great for your happiness and your emotional state. Unfortunately, it may not be quite as good for your pocketbook. This is especially true if your friends tend to overspend. When you are with other people, it is tempting to spend extra money on meals out, shopping, or entertainment. The key to overcoming this problem is to be honest with yourself and with your friends. If you can't afford to do something, say so.
That doesn't mean that you have to abandon your plans altogether. Instead, brainstorm some ideas for inexpensive activities that you can do together. For instance, instead of grabbing breakfast, you could get a simple cup of coffee. Rather than dining out at a restaurant, you could cook a meal for your friends at home. With a little bit of planning, it is possible to socialize with others without going broke in the process.
Generally, you will have better luck if you fill your friends in on your plans to decrease your spending. That way, they can support you in your efforts. You may even influence them to keep better track of their spending, as well. Having social support like this can make it much easier for you to succeed.
Your Way Of Life
Your way of life has a big influence on the amount of money that you spend. If your financial situation changes or if your expenses get out of control, you may need to find ways to cut back. Otherwise, if you continue spending more than you bring in, you will wind up in a huge financial hole. Visit familymoney for help with managing your finances.
Many of your money habits are formed in or influenced by your childhood. For instance, if you grew up in a home where your parents were constantly worried about money, you may tend to spend too much on things today as a way of making up for the things you missed out on as a child. Alternatively, if you grew up in a well-to-do family, you may feel pressure to live a similar lifestyle as an adult.
Budgeting is one of the most powerful tools you have at your disposal when it comes to reining in your spending. Cutting out a few extras can make a big difference in your finances, leaving a lot more money at the end of each month.