So a few days ago I decided to do my best to reverse the crush of my overspending. I set out to side-hustle, drink only water/black tea, eat home-made or free food 85% of the time, walk or cycle everywhere and try to rack up the no-spend days with an overall goal of raising my savings rate till it hurts. Here’s a review of how the first 7 days went.
I need to pay rent in a few days and I haven’t got the money in my current account. I have done some side-hustling recently and am owed enough money to cover the difference. I also loaned someone £350. However, that’s not the only spending I’ve done. I’ve really done some serious damage via my food and socialising categories.
I was lucky enough to take a city break in Berlin a couple of weeks ago. My mate’s a nanny and gets time off when her “family” is away. She happened to be going to Frankfurt so we tacked on our first visit to Berlin – a city that has been in the top 5 of my travel list for a few years now. Here’s a breakdown of what we did and how much the trip cost me.
Yesterday, I opened and read an article by Mindfully Spent about the power of habit. She talks about how, as a naturally erratic person, it’s taken her a while to build good habits and the impact those habits have had on her financial status. ‘A while’ was about 6 weeks. She successfully stopped paying for parking, cut back on buying coffee and started planning and prepping meals in advance. It apparently took her around 6 weeks to achieve these goals. She said, and I quote:
How did I know that I’d made a real change? My whole mindset about paid parking shifted. Now, the cost savings and the extra exercise I get when I use free parking feels like a reward. There have been one or two days when I thought I might have to pay, and I dreaded the idea. Once a mindless convenience, the expense of parking now feels like a horrible waste.
A couple of days ago I reviewed August’s spending and surmised that I need to do better with dining out. Then I promptly went out and spent £72.05 on dim sum, tons of Prosecco, an excellent cappuccino & Baileys as well as a below average burger. I really need to cut back on dining out and eat more meals at home. So I went to the grocery store to get ingredients that I love individually and hopefully create some tasty yet healthy meals that would prevent me from dining out and hopefully help me lose some weight.
I was torn between reviewing August and reviewing how frugal my recent Berlin trip was. The August review won because I really need to get a handle on my spending for the rest of the year. This month was super important for two reasons. Firstly, it’s been a year since I started tracking my spending and trying to control my money. Secondly, I was able to make a decision (since I now have savings) to go home to see my ill dad albeit for only 3 days. How did August go?