No Spend Journey Month One

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Our No Spend Journey – Month One

no spend journey

At the start of January, I wrote about the no spend journey we were embarking upon. To keep myself accountable, I pledged to write at least one post a month about the journey and how it was going. So here is month one!

In case you are not familiar with our No Buy journey, here is the full post. You can also check out the podcast episode we recorded about our no spend journey here. Currently, I’m really happy with how the no spend is going. If I m being totally honest, I feel empowered. I have tried to do a no spend month before but never been successful.

I honestly believe the biggest reason for our success this time is the rules we set for ourselves:

  • I cannot buy any new skincare, makeup, or candles (yes, I have a candle addiction and I’m not talking Bath and Body Works).
  • I can replace items in pre-agreed categories, but only when EVERY item in that category has been used up. That includes sample sizes and miniatures.
  • My husband will not buy any new golf stuff other than consumables (balls, tees, and gloves).
  • The kids know they will not be given anything by us unless it is for their birthday or Christmas. They will not ask for stuff (HA. Ok Mummy, good luck with that one).
  • We will not eat out more than once a week (including fast food, family dinners, date nights and takeouts). We will probably reduce this after the first month. To help with this we will meal plan more consistently.
  • We do not drink enough alcohol to get through the stuff in our bar. NO MORE BOOZE BUYING. At all!

I’m not going to pretend I’m perfect

I have been tempted. I have felt like spending money a fair few times this month. I am a beauty addict and I’m not afraid to say that anymore. My vanity unit is where the evidence lies! (FYI, I’m also a candle addict. Candles are EVERYTHING) But guess what? I stayed on the No Spend wagon.

One thing I am really conscious about not doing is replacing one spending problem with another. I might never become an alcoholic (I hate hangovers so much!) but I could easily replace my beauty addiction with something else. Shoes, clothes, or even something random like picture frame addiction could happen… This first month has made me hyper-aware of what I am spending on. My husband and I agreed we would monitor our credit card statement to ensure we weren’t falling off the wagon or replacing habits and so far, so good! At the end of the month we put all our spending into a spreadsheet (ok, my husband did that. Spreadsheets confuse me). We hope to see improvement each month as we analyse our spending.

What I’ve realized about myself is that I like to have more than one of things. I’m going to explore this further in future posts, but I believe there is a pattern in the way I spend and the reasons behind that spending.

I’m aware that to many people, the no spend must seem very contrived

I actually do not consider myself a shopping addict but shopping addiction is a very real condition. It’s a position I never want to find myself in. I want to change my outlook on spending. I need my children to see there is so much more to life than having ALL THE THINGS.

Here are the steps I have taken to help me this month:

  • I unsubscribed from a lot of emails. It needed doing anyway. My email was brimming with messages about new releases, sales, special deals, and other temptations. I didn’t unsubscribe from everything and it wasn’t only limited to beauty. I realized I need to stop letting ‘a great deal’ be my reason for buying anything. Buy it because you need it, not because it’s on sale.
  • I unfollowed some accounts on IG. For similar reasons to my email unsubscription. I don’t need to see ALL the things. I’m still following my favorite skincare ‘grammers. I still want to know about new releases and products from my favorite companies. If this is to become a life change I cannot expect to never expose myself to things I want.
  • I chose not to delete my Sephora app, but I did turn off notifications so I no longer know what fun sales and offers they have! I did have a little look at it a few times because I still enjoy beauty but I didn’t feel compelled to buy anything.
  • I decided to put some time into learning about ingredients in skincare. I enjoy educating myself and learning new things, so I figure why not learn more about skincare ingredients so I can be smarter with what I use.
  • I still enjoyed using what I own. I have plenty. I do not feel like I am going without, and I refuse to use language that suggests I am ‘being good’. 

I’m excited to see where this journey will take us and I’m really enjoying the freedom I feel. I also LOVED the supportive comments on my last post and the general way it was received by people. If you’d like to listen to the podcast episode about the no spend you can find it here, or on all other podcast platforms. 

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I am Viv, stay at home mom (mummy) to Edison who is 7 and Arlo who is 5. I am married to my best friend and university sweetheart Steve. In October 2014 we moved 5321 miles from our beautiful Victorian home in Sheffield, England to Anaheim Hills and are loving the wild adventure this move has turned our life into. I am so very grateful that this move has given me the opportunity to quit my kinder teacher role to stay home with my crazy whirlwinds and enjoy the adventures of modern motherhood. I love farmers markets with my little foodies, antique shops, restoring antique finds, reading, baking, eating out and trying not to spend everything we have in Target! Oh and chips. I LOVE chips (crisps for any Brits reading this). All the chips.