Hello again, savvy savers! Tomorrow starts a new No-Spend Month Challenge on The LadyPrefers2Save! So, here is a re-cap of last months start, the ground-rules, and the basics for this coming month:
As many of my readers know, I am always juggling several projects, business opportunities, scholastic goals, and home projects at any given time. With so much constantly going on, it’s sometimes easy to forget one of my main passions, and antithesis for this blog, the ability to save money, while live a better live, in hopes of having a “whole living blog,” to help me have a better, more organized life.
So, for 2015 I have decided to take an old-school approach to spending, and so for every other month this year, for the months of February, April, June, August, October, and December I will be participating in a NO SPEND month cycles!
Why this crazy idea? Well, a month of NO spending is an awesome way to both reset your spending patterns, as well as to either kick-start your budget or revamp and make changes to any existing budget you or your family may have. This is also a great challenge for personal responsibility; you can track what you have been spending your hard earned funds, and keep yourself on track, in terms of responsible spending thereafter.
(Photo credit, LivingWellSpendingLess.com)
In addition to my own daily blogging challenges, I have also signed-up for the challenge Ruth Soukup, from Living Well Spending Less, Spend Zero Challenge for the month of October as well. I encourage you all to sign-up for her challenge, as you will be emailed with a free, printable no-spend challenge guide, and on her site daily she will post on her own spending freeze recaps too! For those not sign-up, there is still plenty of time before tomorrow’s challenge starts to sign-up!
Also, be sure to follow Ruth on Instagram @RUTHSOUKUP, and those in the challenge will be using hashtag#31DaysLWSZ to share tips, thoughts, & ideas regarding the challenge, and every time you share your own photo using that hashtag, you’ll be automatically entered to win a daily prize from LWSL site!
And while you at it, and in the throws of downloading new apps, be sure to install Periscope, then search for and follow me @LDYPrefers2Save, RuthSoukup @RuthSoukup, and another awesome new scope buddy, Brittney from Pennies into Pearls, who will not only be blogging and scoping along with this months challenge, she is hosting a free craft scope on October 17th that you won’t want to miss; she is also on periscope @PenniesintoPearls.
So again, I’ll be broadcasting live every morning to talk about the day’s challenge, answer questions, and share tips and ideas at 8am CST on Periscope, my daily blog challenge will post each morning at 6am CST, and a picture of my daily recap will be posted to instgram after five pm CST daily.
I’m totally excited about this challenge! I am looking forward to blogging daily about my NO SPEND struggles, victories, and suggestions from the previous day, and will be posting easy-to-follow daily challenges for my readers during my no-spend months, as well as using Periscope and Instagram to show my victories for the day. As well, each Sunday will share what I’ve learned, saved, and gained from this challenge as part of my Weekly Goals & Reflections Posts. I hope that many of you will join me in this challenge, as we can all you use more ways to save around the home.
So, for those still on the fence here are a few guidelines to keep in mind about my challenge:
The rules are pretty simple:
- No pre-purchasing, stockpiling, or hoarding of goods, perishable or commodity.
- No spending on anything beyond absolute necessities.
- Eat from your pantry & freezer as often as you are able.
- And make changes to the way you purchase and consume goods, services, and commodities in your home.
- The idea of the challenge is to keep up with your daily activities,, but the main goal is simply to stop spending.
- This challenge can be a life changing experience, as you may just be amazed at how your mindset and perspective will change after just a month of seeing how you can enrich your life, without spending more!
There are a few exceptions to the rule as follows:
- Unavoidable expenses related to employment, such as gas, are okay.
- Unavoidable school related expenses.
- Doctors appointments, veterinarian appointments, co-payments, family/pet prescriptions, and therapy sessions are okay.
- Do keep existing service and repair appointments that can’t be rescheduled to “Spending” months, such as hair appointments, lawn care services, trash removal, in-home repair services, etc.
- Do keep existing tithing and charitable giving.
- Do have an adequate stockpile of necessities prior to beginning this challenge, such as pet food, bedding, litter, laundry detergent, dish soap, snow salts, bottled water and emergency staples (if you live in areas frequently affected by seasonal weather), etc.
- Do keep up with healthy living habits. I will continue to use my envelope saving system to fund app purchase rebates (iBotta, Shopmium, Snap by Groupon) for fresh produce and milk, which will inevitably pop-up during my no-spend months; due to my PCOS I need several servings of fruits and veggies daily, and these app savings help keep my freezer stocked on a budget.
- As a business owner and blogger, I always keep ink in the printer, and recommend budgeting for at least one cartridge for the challenge, to ensure you can print any printables, charts, or freebies that may pop-up!
- And it goes without saying, please do pay all of our monthly obligations; rent, mortgage, insurance, utility payments, banking fees, student/financial/business loans, medical expenses, and assumed or credit card debt.
This months spending freeze is not just about not the overall act of not spending, although that will be our main goal, it is about so much more!
By not spending we seek to find out:
- Better ways to revamp our monthly budgets.
- Analyze unnecessary spending patterns.
- Minimizing clutter and chaos as a means to give more freely to out communities.
So, this month I will challenge each of you to find ways to live well, live better, find new sources of joy, will spending less. You may just find out just how much we already have, and how little more we really need. And hopefully, by the end of them month, a life rich with family, friends, and creative planning, secured by fiscally responsible measures, will be who we truly are. In addition, I hope to make my posts comments section a place of encouragement and accountability for us all, too!
I’m not gonna lie, there will be tough moments, and by day fifteen you may be second guessing this month long challenge as a whole. But having done this challenge now four times, it’s beyond worth the trouble.
I’m not sure how many of you are on board for this month’s challenge but the gauntlet has been passed, and I am calling on all of you all to try this challenge, in your own way, with your own rules, and just to do this with me. Right here, right now let’s both commit to a whole month of no spending, starting tomorrow!
Here’s to the challenge,