I’m a fraud. Whew. I feel better.
I write on my blog about changing our personal finance habits, and digging out of debt, but I’m not really honest with you.
If I was really honest with you about everything there would be people in my life who would be…shall we say, unsupportive.
But I’m going to be honest with myself, and maybe sometimes I’ll share it with you. I’m going to write about it every day since I need something to do, other than spending money or thinking about spending money.
Learn more: Preventing Financial Infidelity
If I’m honest, I’m learning that I need to protect my money from me. It’s not some evil force that makes me overspend. It’s me. I need to make it hard to access savings, keep the credit cards out of my wallet, and be more honest with myself about why I’m buying stuff.
I’m really, really good at giving myself a reason why buying something is okay. When you’re in the midst of getting out of debt, some days feel like a real struggle (like yesterday did), and you really just want to do a little something nice for yourself. So maybe, hypothetically, you ask your husband to go buy you ice cream. You do have a coupon after all, so that makes it all right, right? Right?!
I labeled my rationale for spending money my “inner spender”. She’s sneaky, conniving, and able to talk me into just about anything. My inner spender thinks Kate Spade shoes on sale are an “investment,” and buying the kids ice cream will make them feel happy and loved.
Learn more: 5 Ways To Combat Over-Spending
Rationally, I know my inner spender is wrong. There are days though where her siren song takes over and I just can’t see straight. I’m trying to find ways to placate her, but she’s always wanting MORE, and she wants it all RIGHT NOW.
I’m trying to come up with creative ways to protect myself from the fraud that is my inner spender’s mantra-“It’s ONLY $5. Stuff is good. Shopping is fun. She who has the most stuff at the end wins!”
One method is to talk about my purchases out loud. Even just saying that I wish thinking of spending $400 on 3 dresses makes me come to my senses!
Learn more: Balance Spending And Paying Off Debt
If you’re like me you will likely stumble, trip and fall down on your path to financial independence…more than once. As long as we don’t stay down we’ll be ok.
Maybe you have an inner spender too, or you’re in the opposite boat and have an inner frugalista, who gives you heart palpitations and anxiety every time you spend a nickel. I’d love to hear how you’re learning to balance spending with saving. Tell me in the comments.
P.S. If you have a couple thousand or 50 laying around, I’d be happy to take it off your hands. 🙂