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Only Get What You Need

Have you ever found yourself at the grocery store when they are running the 10/$10 sale, throwing things in the cart without rhyme or reason?

Or at a clothing store that is running a buy one get one 50% off promotion, looking around to find something worth getting for 50% off though you only came in for one thing?

I have and these types of “sale” events can be a real challenge when you are trying to live on a budget and not bring in unnecessary clutter. In fact, I put myself in a challenging situation just this past weekend and I’d say I half-passed the test.

My BFF was in town visiting me for the weekend. I love her to death, but we usually end up shopping when we are together, which is something I do not need to be doing right now.

Saturday afternoon we decided we’d go “out” for the evening for dinner and a couple of drinks with friends. In true girl style, she was all like:

She also wanted to look for some new shoes for work. So, our first stop was the shoe store in my hometown, where they were having a BOGO 50% off sale. I was very successful in this store. I played along and tried on a pair or two, but was hardly tempted to get anything and walked out empty-handed.

Our next stop was the one and only clothing store in town. Unfortunately for me and my budget, I LOVE the clothes from that store.

While in the clothing store, I decided to look for one pair of jeans since I have occasionally (disclosure: maybe twice a year) found myself short by a pair and scrambling to do laundry quickly to have another pair clean (I own only 3 pair total).

After 2 hours, I walked out with a pair of jeans, a pair of workout pants (I’d thought about getting another pair for a while), but also a shirt and a headband, both of which I absolutely do not need. I tried to justify these last two things by saying that the shirt was on sale and the headband was cute, cute, cute. But do I really need them? No!

Now, I will be making a return trip to the store to return at least the top and headband. While I thought I could use the workout pants and jeans, I’ve since decided that I need the workout pants more, even though I went in the store originally for jeans.

What did I learn through this little weekend shopping trip?

Both living on a budget and de-cluttering your life take big mindset changes. You must asses where you are at, what you are doing/have been doing wrong, and where you want to be in the future. Then, you have to continually work to achieve the results you want. You didn’t get in debt and cluttered up overnight and you can’t get rid of them overnight either. Bottom line for both goals: only get what you need.

Have you tempted yourself lately?

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Erin Thompson

Erin Thompson spent years managing her own blog about budgeting and debt. Because of that, she has great insights not only about managing spending and borrowing but also about running websites profitably. When she's not writing articles for us, she's traveling and looking for new types of wines to try.
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