Committed to sticking to your budget? Make sure you reach your budget goals each month by lowering your risk of overspending.
The urge to overspend or buy on impulse may be preventing you from saving money and keeping your finances in check.
If you want to stop overspending and reach your financial goals, you’ll need to say goodbye to spending sprees, unnecessary purchases and “retail therapy”. Knowing what your spending “triggers” are is the first step towards financial recovery.
Get your finances under control this year and look forward to a better financial future. Use these eleven personal finance tips to stop overspending:
1. Don’t let spending be your escape. If you enjoy shopping as a diversion or use retail therapy to manage your life on a regular basis, now is the time to put these activities on hold. Stop overspending by making a commitment to only spend on things you need – and not go on shopping sprees as an extracurricular activity.
2. Appreciate what you have. If you’ve gotten into the habit of overspending and have been shopping regularly, you’re probably stocked up on some great finds and goods. Take some time to “take inventory” of what you have and appreciate everything you’ve bought. Remind yourself that more things don’t necessarily mean more satisfaction.
3. Find satisfaction in other areas of your life. Overspending can give you a temporary fix when you’re stressed or are dissatisfied with a certain area of your life. Ask yourself why you’re dissatisfied and find healthier ways to fill that void.
4. Always shop with a list. It’s harder to buy extra items and overspend when you commit to purchasing only what you have on a shopping list. Whether you’re shopping for groceries or clothing items, make a list and stick with it!
5. Track each and every purchase you make. Become more aware of your spending habits and make a list of everything you buy day in, day out. Simply writing these purchases down can stop you from overspending.
6. Set your own spending limits. Set limits on how much you’re going to spend on something, even if it will be a “splurge”. Setting limits puts you back in control and will help you avoid overspending.
7. Talk to someone about your financial habits. Being more open about your spending or shopping habits can make it less likely that you’ll cheat on your budget. Share your goals with someone you trust and have them hold you accountable.
8. Learn how to find great deals. After you’ve set a budget and limit on your spending, start shopping around for the best deal and comparing prices. You’ll be surprised how much you can save on major purchases just by shopping around, and this strategy can stop you from overspending all year long.
9. Don’t count on your credit cards. Credit cards can give you a false sense of buying power and can even perpetuate your spending habits. Leave your credit cards at home and don’t even think about them as a spending resource.
10. Avoid doorbuster deals. Doorbuster deals and deep discounts on only certain items help to lure shoppers and spenders into the store so that they end up spending more than they would otherwise. Avoid these special sales altogether and focus on purchasing specific items you want on your list, and comparing prices until you find the best deal.
11. Be patient with yourself. You won’t be able to nix the overspending habit overnight, especially if you’re guilty of overspending on a regular basis. Give yourself time to try different spending and budgeting strategies, and be prepared to slip up now and then. Keep recommitting to your healthy spending goals until they become a habit, and you’ll soon say goodbye to overspending.