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Tips for Surviving Your First No Spend Week

Good evening friends! It’s day two of Blogtober! If you missed yesterday’s post, click right here to read all about it! Now, let’s get cracking on day two. 
Along side of Blogtober,  thought I’d take on one other challenge- a no spend week! What’s a no spend week you ask? Well, to put it simply its a week where you don’t spend any money. That means no take out, happy hour, online shopping, impulse buys or Starbucks runs. Just good ol’ dinners at home and free hangouts.
Not only do no spend weeks give me major hygge vibes from the idea of all the fun and cozy fall activities you can get up to (see board games, home made cocoa and chilly walks through coloured leaves) but also a tinge of excitement in the money that you can save for other things. We can always use a couple extra bucks with the holidays coming up, right? 
Now all that was left was to get my Husband on board, as usual Trenton is incredibly easy going and when I pitched the idea, shrugged and immediately agreed.  (If only getting him to keep his socks off the floor was that easy!)

Deciding On Your Rules

The first step to a successful no spend week is in deciding the perimeters of your challenge! Here are a few basics to help you out; 
  • How long will your no spend challenge be? 
  • Will you pre-purchase groceries or take out an allotment of cash to use? 
  • Is money from any side jobs (raking leaves, mowing lawns, etc..) fair game or just more to add to the savings pot? 
  • Do gift cards count as spending? 
  • Decide if you will have any funds aside for “emergencies” like needing to gas up?

Take some time to jot down what you want out of the challenge as well, and a definitive plan for the money you’ll be saving, like a vacation, investment, Christmas shopping, or even donating to charity! 

Gather Your Support

Letting your friends and family in on your plan will make it easier to say no to impromptu drinks, dinners and other non-essential expenses. Make plans in advance for dinners at home instead of pubs, and game nights instead of going to the cinema! 

Plan  Ahead 

That brings us to our next and most essential point, making your game plan. Like any challenge; this seems easy in theory, sort of like the Whole 30.. its all fun and games until you can’t have chocolate. In order to be successful in a no spend challenge you need to have an idea of what you’ll be doing, this will help you will making choice that align with your goals instead of impulse spending because you forgot to pack lunch. Some key points to focus on are:

  • Meal planning and pre-buying your groceries! 
  • What free activities are available in your city? 
  • What could you use this time to do around the house that you’ve been neglecting?
  • Making arrangements for free activities with friends, like hosting them for dinner or coffee. 

Post Reminders

Leave yourself some post-its around the house reminding you why you’re taking the challenge, keep your goals at the front of your mind and you’ll be less likely to succumb to the easy way out. You can even set alarms on your phone to cheer you on during times when you might struggle most, like lunch and on your way to work! 

It’s not easy saving money! But a no spend week is a great way to get some insight into your spending habits and get a jump start on your financial goals. 

Have you ever done a spending freeze before? What are your best tips for success? 

xox Becca

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