Friday, December 20, 2013

Why You Should Join The January Spending Freeze


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If you've been around for a while, you might remember my report on my last no spend January (My Dirty Book of Shame - Spending Freeze Diary Violations and Realizations), my March spending freeze (Spending Freeze Book of Sin - I Veruca'd Myself), or my No Spend September (Sinful Admissions of a No Spend September).

The goal of each of those spending freezes was to not spend money on anything that wasn't in the budget. The resulting posts were my victories, slip ups, and thoughts on each spending freeze.

I'm doing it again in January and making it a linkup that I'm co-hosting with MJ at Luck Fupus, Erin at Love, Fun & Football, and KP at Clueless with Cash. You should join us!
Why I think you should join the January Spending Freeze
1. Most people hemorrhage money in December. A spending freeze in January is refreshing. It will allow your bank account some recovery time and jump start any financial goals you've made for 2014, whether it's paying down debt, putting more money into savings, paying for a vacation in advance, or all of the above.
2. It's a challenge, and it's good to challenge yourself.
3. It will make you really think about what you're spending and where. In the future, if money is tight, you will know what you can cut out immediately.
4. It will make you think about why you're spending. Emotional spending is as real as emotional eating and neither are healthy.
5. It will show you where your money is going and allow you to reevaluate how you spend when it's over.
6. Honestly, most of us have enough and can go a month without buying something or spending extra on what we don't need.

The Rules
1. Spending freeze lasts from January 1 - January 31.
2. No outings that are not budgeted for prior to 1/1 - no impromptu lunches, dinners, or nights out. Example: I have a Coach Bingo on 1/11, an outing on 1/18, and a dinner on 1/25. They are all in the budget and okay to spend money on (but I must stay within the amount that's been budgeted).
3. No purchases that are not budgeted for prior to 1/1 - no daily coffee runs, shiny baubles at Target, books, etc.

You can amend the rules as you see fit - if you MUST be able to purchase one coffee a week, build that into your rules. That one DD coffee is important to me, so I can buy ONE per week. I learned that after I totally screwed myself in the first freeze. If you are going balls to the wall and trying to spend $0 outside of bills and transportation, gird your loins and get ready to buckle down!

Whatever you lay out for yourself, be realistic with your goals for this month. Make changes to your spending habits for the next month that can work for you so you don't hate me and yourself by January 6.

Once you set your rules, live by them. Write down any expenditures that aren't in your budget, grab the button below and report in on your experience on Tuesday, February 4. Bloggers, link up your posts. Non-bloggers, prepare to share your list of spending freeze reflections in the comments here or on Facebook or twitter.

Life According to Steph

What do you say? Are you in? Let's start the revolution.
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Linking up with Joy as always, even when I have more than five.











40 comments:

  1. BOOM!!!! So excited. And so is Steve, althought when I asked him to join (bringing his lunch to work) he gave me a sideways glance like "whatchu talkin bout woman?" So far I have three budgeted outings (and I'm trying to find coupons for two of them!), I am not planning anything myself, but if someone asks me to do something before 12/31 for January, I will put it in the budget.

    You called me MJ... LOVE

    NOW LET'S SAVE SOME DOUGH!!!!!!

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  2. I need this so bad. I just don't know if I can do it!

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  3. saving money is in my blood...cheap chinawoman here, remember? but i fully support this because EVERYONE should save money on the regular.

    -kathy
    Vodka and Soda

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  4. I love this idea. I think my month is going to be February because January involves a trip home and a ski weekend and those are hard to do on the cheap. I'll just read through everyone else's ideas :)

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  5. Oh man. I really need to do this. If I know that Victoria Secrets is having the semi annual sale, can I go ahead and pre budget what I need to get? I mean...I only buy bras once a year at half off. That is the money saving way to do it after all! Plus, I will be on vacation the first 3 days of January. After typing all that out, I may alter my no spend month to start a few days into January haha.

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  6. I did the Pantry Cleanout Challenge with you last Spring and we went almost 10 weeks without buying non perishables. It was refreshing and fun and we saved a ton of money.
    I'm joining you in this challenge. Looking forward to it! Off to make up my rules and sticking to them!!!

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    Replies
    1. I'm excited you're joining us Karen! I need to do another mini pantry cleanout in January and February.

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  7. So excited to be joining in with you and to see what everyone is capable of!!! There is strength in numbers! :)

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  8. Good luck! I would make so many rules and exceptions that it wouldn't ever turn into a freeze. But, on the flip side, outside of food and coffee, I don't spend much on clothes or books or music anyway so I will just continue with my cheap ways!

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  9. Totally joining! I have my list of exceptions (January is a big birthday month int he family) but we have a dollar limit! PLUS it's January. We just got gifts, what could I super need? I've got this

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  10. Love this idea! We've definitely been hemorrhaging money this month between throwing a Christmas party and all the gifts we bought. But I must add that using gift cards from Christmas doesn't count ;-)

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  11. ugh i know. i really should. but my birthday is in january!

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    1. Shouldn't everyone else spend for your birthday- not you?! :)

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  12. I'm totally joining in- I will need to sit down with my calendar for January and see what I've already scheduled. I bought Joe tickets to a couple basketball games for Christmas and am going to NYC one weekend but already bought my show ticket.

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  13. Yes, I'm in!! This is a super good idea, I'll be much more likely to stick with it if I'm reading about everyone else sticking with it.

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  14. I think I will join as far as food purchases. No junk, only clean food. I do not spend anyway on all the stuff you girls buy
    as far as cosmetics, coffee, clothes, shoes. May also curtail my $ store spending, too. Purging to those who need it would be a fine thing to do, too.
    Enjoy this spring-like day. Love your MOMMA

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  15. Great idea!! I really need to do this but am not organized enough yet to start in January haha. We are definitely going to be cutting way back next month though.

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  16. I am so in! It will be my first ever budget freeze. My hubby is so happy! :)

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  17. I should do this soon. I don't really buy a lot of "stuff" (not by choice but because I don't have access to anything) but we could definitely stand to eat out less...we eat out at least twice a week.

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  18. I am totally in!! I really need to build up my savings after this past month!

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  19. Okay, Coach. So I need to plan ALL of my outings and budget for them? No impromptu happy hours?!? I can do it, I CAN.

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  20. Well I had put myself on a spending freeze so I guess I might as well join your link up!

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  21. I'm excited to see your progress! I can't do January, I just already know it. Mom's birthday, post-holiday impromptu get togethers, post-christmas sales during which I stock up gifts for the year. It's a rough month for me, but February maybe I can steal your tricks and use them!

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  22. I should do this. I really should. But I don't think I'd last until January 3 let alone 31st. I have a reeeeaaaallll problem. And I live across the street from a Target. That's just setting myself up for failure right there.

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  23. I love this! I definitely need a spending freeze for the new year not just January. Thanks for the idea!

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    Replies
    1. I'm planning on doing a freeze the first month of each quarter, Migdalia. Join me!

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  24. I agree, i try and do this every once in a while to see how much money I can save. It's pretty surprising actually - I'll be joining you for sure :)

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  25. That sounds like such a good idea. If it weren't for the fact that I don't plan that far ahead I'd be in. I usually don't know what I'm doing on a weekend until that weekend which means I would have nothing budgeted. Good luck though!

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  26. I'm going to do it. It is going to be SO hard. And I'm going to HATE it but seeing how much I spent this much and how much debt I now have it is totally necessary!!!!!

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  27. This is something I tend to do throughout the year. I'm pretty stingy when it comes to spending extra money, but during one of these freezes it's amazing to see what I can save!

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  28. I need to do this too, but never in January because it's my birthday month. Haha. I never start diets or new years resolutions until mid-Jan because of that. I'm in next time though!

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  29. This is so scary, but I so need it! I think I'm in.......oh did I really just say that??

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  30. I'm in. I've been planning on a January retrenching anyway, so I think this fits right in with the plan!

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  31. Hi Steph! New reader here. I found your blog through Kate at Another Clean Slate. I'm not a huge fan of link up's, but I'm joining in on the January Spending Freeze. I have major issues (just read my post How To Spend A Months Allowance On Your Lunch Break) and I have a feeling this is going to make a big impact. Jumping over to read your reports from previous spending freezes.

    Happy New Year!
    Shannon
    www.brasshoney.blogspot.com

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  32. Alright, I'm a little late to the party, but I'm joining in the spending freeze! The thought of this was the only thing that kept me from loading up on 50% off Christmas stuff last night! Ha.

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