October 3, 2007, 7:00 am

Becoming Frugal Through Your Goals

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Frugal
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Those who read my blog for a while noticed that I am definitely not the most frugal guy on earth. However, it always stings when I get my mastercard bill at the end of the month (I committed to pay the entire balance each month, whatever it could be). I noticed that what I call “The Frugal Reflex” is not natural for me. However, it is something that can be developed throughout your personal goals. I find out that becoming frugal is much easier when you have a specific objective to achieve.

Change your way of thinking

I recently had to pay $1,900 in order to fix my car. While I have enough liquidity to pay the bill, it was not plan in my budget. Therefore, I decided I would focus on saving money until I virtually save the same amount of money. I would technically be able to compensate for that unexpected expense (I went to the garage for a regular oil change!). Since then, I write down every “potential expense” that I avoid.

So now, every time I have to take out my wallet from my pocket I ask myself: “Does it really worth it?” “Is there any other way I could get the same thing for cheaper?” “Can I borrow it from my friend until buying one?”. As I have a very specific goal, “The Frugal Reflex” kicks in and I am becoming more (creative) frugal along the way.

What are the results?

Well, I started this experimentation about a month ago and I got positive results. In fact, I was able to save $532 dollars! I was quite happy to see that “The Frugal Reflex” does pay.

I also feel better about myself as I realize that I save money more efficiently. After three weeks, I can say that The Frugal Reflex starts to come naturally and I don’t have to make any effort for it.

Are there any flaws?

I noticed one flaw to this technique. While your mind shifts to “saving mode”, you might tend to exaggerate the amount of money you are saving. For example, you could be tempted to write down stuff that you would have never buy in any situation. It doesn’t mean that because you taught of it that you would absolutely spend the money. If you do not remain careful with you list, you will have the impression that you are saving more money than you can actually spend!

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