As mentioned in my last post, I’m doing a shopping ban this summer! The ban is inspired by Cait Flanders who did a yearlong shopping ban successfully, and then decided to do another year after completing the first.
I’m inspired by Cait’s Blog and Podcast (Budget and Cents Podcast) to use the shopping ban as a way to observe my habits with shopping and, of course, save money.
In the months leading up to graduation, I became nervous about how I would continue to pay my bills without the help of student loans. The prospect of moving into a new wave of adulthood was keeping me up at night. While during the day I continued to browse Pinterest and online shops for styling inspiration; I realized I was unconsciously spending more money than I wanted to on material possessions.
I’ve come to realize that being very intentional with my budget this summer will help make ends meet, and allow me to put money in savings. I decided to do this shopping ban as a way to create a habit out of saying no to buying new things, especially things I don’t absolutely need.
To support myself in this journey I’ve unfollowed all Instagram accounts that sell products, or people who frequently promote products, and unsubscribed from all company's email lists.
My goals are to opt out of consumption for consumption's sake and to save money. With that in mind, here are the rules I’m setting out for myself:
I won’t be purchasing:
- New makeup, clothes, or house items, unless absolutely needed.
- I created a budget for food out so I am mostly eating homemade food.
- Gifting material objects, I’ll gift experiences instead.
The challenge will allow me to:
- Put money in savings my account
- Get creative with activities to do with friends
- Attend yoga or fitness classes, I’m happy to put my money towards that
- Use gift cards up, but being mindful of how I feel while shopping
What I’m anticipating during the challenge:
- I have a wedding coming up this summer that I need a dress for. I’m going to make my best effort to borrow something from a friend, however, if that doesn’t work out I’ll let myself get something second hand, and I’ll create a budget to stick to.
- I’ve made a small list, as suggested by Cait Flanders, of items that I’m allowed to buy this summer that have been on my needs list for awhile. Jeans and refilling my tinted moisturizer make this list. Doing this helps me define what I truly need to purchase this summer, and I assure you the list is minimal.
- My goal is not deprivation, but to feel freedom in a new way. I feel doing this challenge will give me new financial freedoms by giving myself more space to live, and being less chained to material items. Stay tuned!
- The challenge started on June first and will end September 1st!
I’ll be posting about how the challenge is going here, and you can keep up with me on this journey on Instagram this summer @asimplealternative.