Trade The Journey

Trade The Journey

Weekly Progress

Hello to All! I hope last week was a progressive week for you and you encountered learning experiences.

At the beginning of the year, I made a pledge to go on a 30-day no-spending challenge. Of course, I was allowed to spend money on the necessities needed for the week and month. No spending was allowed on items both short-term and long-term that were not absolutely necessary.

A family trip was scheduled and then canceled and scheduled once again. Had I known I would be going out of town, I would have rescheduled my plan to embark on this challenge in February. Almost every expense was extra because the trip was not entirely necessary. But visiting family is important so I decided to go on the trip anyway.

Because I track my expenses, I was able to see the last trip I took and some of the expenses I incurred. A lot of my purchases were on small items like clothes, movies, and fast food. I reasoned that I was staying in a hotel and needed to purchase food. This time, I made a choice to buy vegetarian lunch meat, bread, tomatoes, salsa, and bottles of water at the local grocery store.

I immediately sensed this would be a little harder than I thought. Everyone else purchased their food from a local restaurant and I rode back to the hotel questioning my motives. The amount we both spent on food was the same and theirs looked more appetizing.

Each day, I tried my best to stick to my budget. I splurged and purchased my favorite sushi rolls from my favorite restaurant in the town, which has been a tradition since my college. Next trip, I will cut out the sushi for the ultimate no spending challenge. I also slipped up and brought popcorn at target, fries and a drink at McDonald’s, and gummi bears.

Towards the end of the trip, I saw the results of my purchases. I tallied the results and I spent $100 less than the previous trip. At first, I doubted my plan of saving money, knowing it would be uncomfortable at every turn. By sticking to my initial plan, it will be much easier next time.

Thoughts: With the initial amounts spend on the food, it was easy for me to question whether this budget would work or not. I thought that each of the small fast food purchases throughout the day would equal the initial amount I spent at the grocery store. It actually made a big difference.

It actually wasn’t just one area that contributed to the increase in savings, it was the total effort. Small adjustments in different areas amounted to a great win for me.

I decided to give myself a “B +” overall. February, I will attempt the 30-day no spending challenge again.

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