Monday, December 13, 2010

Being frugal when no one around you is

I find it hard when I am with friends and extended family sometimes as their spending habits are different than mine in so many ways. A lot of the people I know choose to spend first on a whim and then regret it later. Or alternately, they just have a much higher fun money budget than I do and blowing money on something seems like no big deal to them. It is hard for them to understand that we just don't want to drop $35 on a movie and snacks for the two of us when that money could be used so much more wisely in other places.
Here are some things I have tried to remember and tips I have tried to use when being around people who do not have frugal attitudes.
1- Remember being frugal is not for everyone. Saving money I see as an integral part to my job in the home. I spend time each week looking for the best deals and how to get the most out of what we have, but not everyone wants to do that, or feels they don't have the time.
2- Telling the truth sometimes works wonders, but can be boring. For instance, just telling your family member or friend that the dinner out or whatever is not something that is in your budget that week.
3- If for whatever reason you don't feel comfortable telling them your budget ins and outs, you can almost always find a  kind and honest way to get out of whatever it is without hurting their feelings.
4- Reconsider your spending if necessary. If you realize you would really like to spend that $35 on the movie, go through in your head where that money can come from in your budget and go have fun. Just make it so you don't regret having spent the money.
5- Suggest something else that is free or lower cost. Have them over for dinner, have a park play day, etc.

In the hard times right now a lot of people are learning lower cost ways to have fun. The most important thing is how you connect with others, not if it is done over $5 lattes.

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