Going in lockdown mode.

I am going on a shopping ban.

credit: beautyfash.com

Y’see, for the last couple of months it seems I have been unable to control my spending. It’s not that I’m replacing my wardrobe every month or anything like that, it’s just that I seem to do doing lots of little shopping trips here and there and it’s adding up. Looking back over my receipts, it’s pretty easy to pick out a pattern: every time I go to the city, I end up going shopping and buying either clothes or stuff for my house.

It doesn’t help that I’ve been to the city much more than usual in the last couple months. It’s just so tempting and easy to go visit the mall or big box stores and buy something that I can’t get locally. Just last week I was in Toronto for a workshop and my coworker and I decided to visit Ikea – and guess who comes out with a cart full of stuff and $200 less in my bank account. Yeah, this girl. Not one of my shining moments, that’s for sure.

I usually try and justify my mini-shopping sprees by telling myself

  • ‘It’s ok, I don’t come to the city that often’ – when really, I usually end up in a city at least once a month.
  •  ‘It’s ok, I’m not buying much’ – but a little here and there tends to add up really quickly.
  • ‘I need x, y, z’ – I’ve lived without x, y, z so far and can seemingly function without it.

I feel like I’m regressing – although, it’s not at a point where I’m spending more than I’m earning, it’s just I’m not saving as much as I would like to. I’ve got a deck renovation and a major overhaul of the basement coming up and I want those to happen sooner rather than later. The only way that can happen is if I buckle down and save. I think rather than just going with a blanket shopping ban, I’m going to set myself some rules and exceptions:

  • No jeans, shoes, scarves, tops, sweaters, jackets, skirts, dresses from hence forth. The only clothing item I’m allowed to buy until the end of July are socks.
  • No home decor items shall be bought. Only necessary home items allowed: lightbulbs, batteries, etc.
  • I will allow myself to print 15 photos for two frames that I have recently purchased.
  • No makeup. I have more than enough make up.
  • Exception: sunscreen and bug spray. I allow myself to buy in bulk if necessary.
  • Gifts are exempt. This shouldn’t be too bad though, no upcoming July birthdays, just a couple bridal showers.
  • No DVDs/games. I really really want Season 2 of Justified, but I will restrain myself.

Those are my rules. Pretty strick, but I’m going to try my damnest to keep my wallet closed. Anyone else out there on a shopping ban, or has done one recently? Any tips, thoughts, or words of encouragement?

Have a good ‘un

Country Girl

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Categories: Shopping, Spending | Tags: , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “Going in lockdown mode.

  1. Oh god, I have to do this too- on the weekend I went and bought some bras and some work shoes and I got the biggest spending high. I literally did need everything I bought (especially the shoes, I run the heels off of a pair before I buy more) but the feeling I got just reminded me of how vigilant I have to be with my spending. Home decor is going to be so hard for me to shy away from this month as well. If I have to live in a place that looks like a frat house for a while, so be it.

    Good for you for acknowledging that you need a shopping ban though!

  2. Cait

    I’ve never done an actual ban per se but basically didn’t buy anything for the 6 months I was living at home. Since moving back out, I have only bought three things for my apartment and all were necessities (curtain rod, mixing bowl, shower curtain). I forced myself to appreciate all of the things I do have and also look at all the things I own and never touch. That sure opened my eyes, when looking back on my old spending habits!

    • Cait

      And I meant to add that I think you’ll do great with this. Giving yourself a short period of time to start with is smart. Good luck!

  3. Everyone needs to start somewhere I always say. I think it’s important to do 3 things to start off…..
    1-Plan a timeline (where do you want to be in 6 months, 1 year, 5 years)
    2-Set achievable goals (long-term, Short-term)
    3-Achieve them with a budget

    I always ask everyone if they budget their money and I don’t mean in their heads. I mean are you using a paper and pen or a spreadsheet. Are you documenting all your expenses. Once you make this lifestyle change you will never look back. You can budget to buy that scarf or new pair of jeans and feel no guilt at all because the money will be there. Little improvements to your budget will get you where you need to be. Don’t beat yourself up but certainly take the steps to stop justifying your shopping because if you have debt there is no justification in this world adding to it.

    Good Luck! I have a budgeting series on my blog where I showcase how we designed our budget and how we were able to save our money over the past years using a budget. Check it out if you like. If you have any questions send me an email. Keep at it and you will get there. “It’s not about how much you make it’s how you save it”-Mr.CBB

    Cheers,
    Mr.CBB

    • Thanks Mr. CBB. I’m a spreadsheet budgeter, but man, I do like to shop. I have consistently been going over-budget in a couple categories, so instead of just bumping up what I’m budgeting (which I could do), I’d rather challenge myself not to spend, at least for a little while. Thanks again for the encouragement!

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