Becoming frugal is a difficult change to make, especially if you’re trying to cut down on deep-rooted spending habits.
Some people are born into frugal families and grow up learning about money management, delayed gratification, and investing wisely. Other people have to learn frugality on their own, whether they became inspired by a financial expert or are simply tired of living paycheck to paycheck.
Whatever your reason, the point is that you’re making changes that are bound to have a positive impact on your life forever. I have always had an oddly frugal bent. I’m not sure if I was born with this tendency or if it’s something I picked up over time, but I’ve always had a knack for saving money, even as a kid when my siblings would spend theirs.
There have been many times when people close to me have given me a hard time for my frugal ways, but I don’t let it bother me. I know that the way I choose to live my life now will benefit me in the future far more than any shopping trip or impromptu dinner date.
In fact, I’ve cut back even more this year than usual, since some of my grocery spending got out of control last year. In my opinion, even the most frugal people have room for improvement.
It’s a Worthwhile Challenge
I’m not going to lie, sometimes it’s hard being frugal, especially now that I have children. There are many times when I want to buy them something and decide not to. Then I feel guilty about it afterward. I just have to constantly remind myself that not only will my children benefit from growing up in a home that emphasizes smart money habits, but that being frugal, no matter what stage you’re in, definitely gets easier over time.
Here are some reasons why:
1. Practice, and You’ll Get Used to It
When you decide to eat better and cut out junk food, it takes time for your body to adjust. For the first few weeks, you might still crave fast food or really amazing queso (or perhaps that’s just me). Similarly, when you decide to be more frugal, your brain will still crave a trip to the mall, a nice dinner date, or that really pretty throw pillow you spotted at Pottery Barn.
It takes time to turn off these triggers, to learn what makes you spend, and to teach your brain to find enjoyment in a different way. Just like eating better, as each month passes, frugality and reduced spending become a normal part of your daily routine.
Eventually, you won’t have to try to be frugal. One day you’ll wake up and realize that you simple are.