A few months ago, I created a fun chart about possible frugal substitutes. The idea was that you can replace pricey wants like vacations and massages with cheaper options that fulfill the same need. Looking back, the intent was good but I’ve totally ignored my own advice for the past few weeks!
I went on a short trip. I bought a new computer. I got a massage. I went shopping. I bought some clothes and a new purse. AND I keep browsing online shopping sites. In short, I have been choosing expensive wants instead of examining the reason behind my sudden desire to buy, buy, buy. The only possible exception is eating out but my husband and I did some of that, too. It just hasn’t been a budget buster because we still eat home most days or tend to choose inexpensive places when we do go out.
I cannot justify my choices but I really needed a vacation!
The idea of finding frugal substitutes for expensive wants turned from a comment, courtesy of reader and commenter Debbie M, to a full-fledged post at grumpy rumblings.
Here’s the excerpt from that comment, and I’m called out to name my list of frugal substitutes, an idea inspired by the book “Your Money or Your Life.”
Debbie M says:
“And then there’s also strategizing about what makes you happy. If you want to feel pampered, do you need to visit a tropical island? Or would you be just as happy with an in-town spa or fancy hotel, a massage, a facial, or, in my case, fresh-out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookies and a good book?”
…And maybe oilandgarlic can share a list of Frugal Substitutes! We can always use more of those!”
And I said:
“I’ve been meaning to respond with my frugal substitutes but I could probably do a whole post. The gist of it is that I try to figure out WHY I want the big indulgence. Am I stressed? Do I want to try something new? In the past, I would assume that the best way to satisfy my want is a spa day or travel. Now I realize that I can satisfy that need for pampering in multiple and often cheaper ways. I could do a at-home facial. I could buy flowers and put a slice of lemon in my water. I can put on relaxing music. I could convince my husband to give me a massage.”
So without further ado, here’s my handy dandy chart (sort of tongue-in-cheek), and please feel free to share your own frugal substitutes:
Posted in Advice, finances, random thoughts, simple living, travel
Tagged frugal substitutes, frugality, lower cost, massage, money, pampering, saving money, travel