Inspired by this video, my husband and I decided to do a spending freeze this past week. In case you don’t want to watch the video, this means that we didn’t spend money with the exception of gas (my husband commutes to work and has to fill up his tank twice a week).
When we first decided to do the freeze, I figured it would be pretty easy because we had enough milk and food to last for a week without grocery shopping. But I was wrong. It was really hard.
One of the benefits of a spending freeze is that you stop all spontaneous spending. Which means I passed up a lunch date with friends, picking up doughnuts on the way home from a frisbee game, and buying cheap kids books from a door-to-door salesman. Because really, I didn’t need any of that. I still had playdays with friends this week that weren’t at restaurants, and we still ate food and read books- that we already owned.
I became more aware of what we actually did need to buy this week, like another lock for our front door (man-cub D figured out how to unlock it and escape). I ran out of deodorant, so I’ve gotten a little creative with covering up body odor.
Most of all, it was nice not running to to the store 2-3 times this week. We’ve gotten so bad at keeping a proper grocery list that we will run to the store for just one or two things and it gets to be time-consuming. Also, going to the store with a toddler is not my favorite, so I’m glad I got a week off from that!
Also it was kind of nice putting off some bills that didn’t need to be paid right away…because paying bills is stressful. But, we will be paying them right when the spending freeze is over, because debt is also stressful.
One point that the video above argues is that the money you would have spent on groceries you put into savings. In our experience, we still ended up going grocery shopping right after our spending freeze, so that didn’t really work out. We decided instead of just setting the money aside, we would leave it in our checking, unscathed.