In yesterday's post, I mentioned that I wasn't completely happy and that I was wanting to make some changes to my lifestyle. Although I'd already planned a spending ban and an accompanying blog post about it, after getting a little personal last night I decided I'm turning the positive changes I'm attempting to make in my life into a new series on the blog. I'll write about the things I've been doing on my journey into a healthy body and mind, what has been working, what hasn't and so on. As I began my spending ban on Saturday, that will be the focus of my post today.
In February, I attempted a spending ban which you can read about here and here. TL;DR I wasn't very successful for various reasons. I don't think 28 days was long enough. My mindset wasn't right. That kind of thing. I feel different about it now. After looking through my bank statements in the presence of my boyfriend and going shopping with him and spending nearly £30 on two tiny products, I realised how frankly ridiculous I am with my money. Honestly, I see nothing wrong with throwing your cash around and buying yourself things you want; if you have that cash to throw around. And my problem is, I really don't. Sure I have an interest free overdraft but I shouldn't use it. I have no need to. Sure I'm very lucky to be parentally supported at the moment so the vast majority of my wage is disposable income but I've decided that doesn't mean I should dispose of it on products I'll never get through or clothes I never wear or a different bar of chocolate every day, a little magazine here and there...I could go on. My spending is completely out of control. It's out of control and it's about time I admitted that and started reigning myself back in.
Money issues aside, I hate the mentality my shopping addiction has left me with. Once I want something, my brain refuses to distinguish between want and need. I am in a continual state of stress because I am afraid something will sell out before I can get it. I've thrown more than one tantrum in my time because a store doesn't have my size or something doesn't fit. In all honesty, it's unpleasant. It's beyond an obsession. Whereas I used to view things as "too expensive" I now see everything I want as worth the price. Let's be honest, is a toner really worth £25, ever? To me, no, it isn't. As you can see, it's well and truly time for me to change and kick this habit once and for all.
As I want to be successful in my ban this time, I've set myself some rules and guidelines to abide by while I participate in my ban. I'm hoping this will give me structure and help me stick to my ban.
- Some things are unavoidable. I have to pay my phone bill, my direct debit for contact lenses and renew my bus pass every 4 weeks. Obviously, I will still be spending money on these.
- Accidents happen. Should I need to replace things during my ban, e.g. I break my phone, I'm allowed to get myself one.
- Essential products like deodorant, shower gel etc which I only use one at a time of are allowed to be repurchased when I run out of them
- False lashes and false nails are not essentials and I've stocked up on them now so hopefully won't run out during my ban anyway. Same goes for fake tan...
- If I run out of blusher or any other makeup where I have multiples items, I am not allowed to replace them. If I completely run out of blusher (yeah, bloody unlikely) then I can buy more
- I can't use Boots/Superdrug points because although I won't be spending, I'll still be indulging myself
- I'm going to cancel my LoveFilm subscription and Graze boxes
- Even when my ban is over after July 31st, I am still not allowed to buy any makeup/non essential haircare/skincare until I have reviewed everything I already own
So, what am I hoping to achieve? First of all, I've demolished my savings and I'm hoping a solid two months of saving nearly everything I earn will bring them back to life a little. I do want to move out some time sooner rather than later so I need to make some sacrifices to make this happen. I'm also hoping to well and truly sort out the difference between want and need in my brain. I'm hoping two months of buying nothing unessential with help me to realise that the world will not end if I don't get everything I want.
To avoid temptation, I went on a shopping spree on Friday 31st May. I've bought loads of new nail art tools, false nails, eyelashes, a jumper, some shoes, a bag. Stuff that will help me alter things I already own basically. Stuff that will allow me to change my look during my ban so I hopefully don't crack and go shopping during June and July. I'm also going to ban myself from going into town without a very specific purpose and I am not going to window shop online.
Have you attempted anything like this? How did it go? Wish me luck!