The following post is from Anne, who lives in my computer, and is covering for me while I’m kind of busy. She just launched a new site — Money Propeller! Read the habits you can drop, then tell her why you’re not giving up coffee on Twitter (she’s @moneypropeller). Please note, she is Canadian, and cannot help herself from adding additional vowels to words. She’s not even apologizing for it!
There are a lot of things that cost a dollar here or a dollar there that we don’t really think about at all. Frequently, they are tied to our habits, a decent number of which aren’t all that great for us in the first place.
Of course not!
I kid, just because I am suggesting these things does not mean that I have necessarily succeeded in eliminating them, they are, however, all definitely habits you can drop completely to save money. If you find yourself in a situation where you are in debt, you probably shouldn’t be doing any of these things, at least not on your own dime, because you don’t have your own dime. All of your dimes belong to the bank!
Without further ado, here are five habits you can drop completely to save money right away:
1. Chewing Gum or Eating Mints
It has been ages since I chewed gum with any regularity. That said, it is still ever present at the grocery store check-out, and there are even fancy packages next to the till at Starbucks. Likewise, with mints.
Whenever I get mints, usually they are free swag from somewhere, I have a tendency to eat them all in the space of a few days. If regular mint eaters even come close to that rate, they are dropping much too much money on something that is totally unnecessary. If you want them for your breath, carry one of those super tiny toothbrushes, instead. Your dentist, your waistline, and your pocket book, will thank you.
2. Drinking Coffee
Believe it or not, it is possible to entirely stop consuming coffee. There are tens of thousands of people in Utah who will tell you it is possible. You probably even know some people who don’t drink coffee at all.
I am almost one of those people. My doctor told me to cut the caffeine, so that I felt better. The first two or three weeks were very hard, I won’t lie. But, once I made it through, I did feel better. Plus, I spend a lot less on coffee now. I just don’t buy it much anymore. Less in terms of groceries, less in terms of restaurants and coffee shops. Your body doesn’t need it and will be better off without it, even. Your pocketbook doesn’t need it either.
Give it a shot. No coffee. At all.
3. Drinking Pop/Soda/Juice
Empty calories. All of them. That coconut water or kombucha that you love? Superfluous. Just stop drinking all of these things. Just like with the coffee, your body won’t miss them and neither will your pocket book. Do you know what else will benefit? The planet. The transportation, garbage and recycling of all of these things takes a horrendous toll on the earth.
Buying groceries will be easier when you aren’t lugging that stuff all around, either. Plus, you can always eat an actual orange, and enjoy the fibre, if you want that delicious citrus flavour.
4. Drinking Alcohol
This is a hard one to give up. I don’t even try, myself, but thankfully I am in a financial position to not need to. Alcohol is extremely expensive, not very good for you, and a luxury. Cut it out, or cut it down.
5. Buying Take Out
Buying take out is usually due to our own laziness. Most of it is awful for you, and expensive. Stock up on some grab-and-go meals, especially home-made ones. You can even resort to a collection of clif and luna bars, or cans of chili. Pop in to a 7-11 and borrow their microwave. Shhh.
They will have a lot less sodium and unpronounceable things in them, which your body will appreciate. They’ll also cost a lot less. You can survive without any take out at all. Trust me, I know. There is virtually nothing that I can eat from take-out anymore, due to food sensitivities, and I manage to survive. Funny, that. It’s just a change in habits, that’s all.
There you have it, habits you can drop completely to save money, and to save your body!
Anne writes about her oscillations between penny pinching and splurging on her blog Money Propeller. She also talks about gift giving, ranging from super cheap gift ideas to expensive, at her other blog Unique Gifter. If you want to chat or ask her a question, follow her on twitter @moneypropeller, she spends a bit too much time there.