Friday, April 11, 2008

spend less by shoping less

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It seems obvious, doesn't it? If we shop less, we spend less. That's what I've decided to start doing. I go shopping once a week, and when I'm in town to shop I hit everything on this extended trip. The grocery, the Wal-Mart, whatever other errands I deem necessary. As I think back on my receipts, it looks like I spend somewhere around $35 a week at Wal-Mart. That doesn't include any food. It really gets me wondering where all that money goes...

A while back, a friend of mine mentioned how her family only goes to Wal-Mart once a month. I couldn't fathom it. What if you run out of something? What if you find out there's something you Really Need? A couple of years ago, I was at Wal-Mart probably twice a week. I decided to be thrifty, and cut it down to one trip to town a week. While I have saved some money by reducing my trips, it is apparent that I could go one better.

As I've been looking at ways to pare down my unnecessary spending, I thought, if I go to the store less often, I'll be less inclined to make impulse buys. Also, even though it's less than a mile of extra driving to go to Wal-Mart, I'll save a little gas, and save a lot of time. Every time I go into Wal-Mart, I spend more than an hour there, just wandering around looking at things. I think I have better things to do with an hour (like exercise).

So, from here on out (hopefully) the big-blue-box store will only be a once a month trip. Yes, there will be instances where there really is something that I need to get outside of my once a month trip. But, if I make the effort to pay attention to how fast we use consumable goods, and do a little thinking ahead for the month, I imagine I'll have it covered pretty well. I'm curious to see how this works out, and what my savings will be!


Unknown said...

Especially with the weather being beautiful (at least here in DC), you could also walk, since it's less than a mile. I've found walking forces me to include the energy it would take to carry any useless thing home in my estimation of whether I can "afford" something. And it would save gas, give you exercise, and let you enjoy the day (very zen, no?).

I commend your efforts to shop less, and am really impressed that you were able to cut your trips in half!

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