Being Frugal is More About State of Mind Than What You Buy

by Miranda Marquit · 0 comments

Being frugal isn’t so much about what you buy as it is a state of mind. Too often, we get caught up in penny pinching in a way that isn’t healthy for our finances — or our sanity.

Frugality Isn’t the Same as Never Buy Anything

Many of us see frugal living as a lifestyle that involves never buying anything. We think that being frugal means that we don’t pay for things we don’t need. We get caught up in trying to avoid buying anything, and in doing as much as we can on our own — even if the results are sub-par.

The problem with this approach is that sometimes you buy cheap things that don’t last very long. Low-quality items can cost you more in the long run than a more expensive higher-quality item that you only have to buy once. DIY can also be more expensive than expected if you don’t have a good idea of how to actually complete the tasks in question. You could make a mistake that winds up ruining your home and costing far more than you expected.

Finally, if you mistake frugality for never buying anything, you could end up with a rather disappointing quality of life. You can get caught in a scarcity trap, feeling as though you can never spend money on the things you like because you are trying to be “frugal” or “save money.” This can make life frustrating and difficult to deal with.

Frugality is About Getting Value for Your Money

Being frugal is more about your mindset and getting value for your money, rather than always saying no to spending. When you’re truly frugal, you have a good idea of what you want, and where your priorities are. You should know what’s worth spending money on, and cut out what isn’t important.

Figure out what really matters to you. I don’t care about living in a fancy house, so my son and I are renting something adequate to our needs. There isn’t a lot of fancy furniture because I don’t need to fill my home with stuff. However, we do like to go on trips. So, we put money in a travel fund each month, and we make it a point to go other places when we have a chance.

While I try to look for deals when we travel (I use rewards points, discounts and other strategies to save money), I’m also willing to pay a little extra for comfort and convenience. These things are important to me in a way that things like getting a 50″ flat screen TV or an expensive cable package (I just use online streaming now) aren’t.

True frugality is about figuring out what matters to you, and then making sure that your financial resources go toward those items. You cut out the stuff that doesn’t matter to you and instead focus on what does. You can still spend money — you just stop wasting it on things that are unimportant and that don’t help you reach your goals.

Bonus Tip:

Another way to save on your monthly Internet and TV costs is to find a current ATT U-Verse coupon code or at least a promotion to knock down your home service bill.

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