As human beings, emotions drive a lot of our financial decisions. And you know what were spending a lot of time with during the quarantine? Our emotions.
If youve had a rough day and youre feeling angryorsad, you might buy a new outfit because—dang it—you deserve it.
If youre feeling joyful, you might spend as a celebration, but worry about whether you can afford it later.
During this pandemic, many people are feeling so fearfultheyve bought the stores all out of toilet paper!
These are just a few examples of emotional spending. Believe me, Ive been there. But we should never base our spending on whatever were feeling in the moment. So, here are four ways you can stop emotional spending dead in its tracks:
Even window-shopping can release a surge of dopamine, giving your brain the fix it craves. But this way, you get to keep your money.
Sleep on it
Wait at least overnight before making a purchase over $100. Stop to ask these three questions:
- Why do I want this item?
- Will I really use it?
- Does it fit within my budget?
If youre still excited about the purchase tomorrow, chances are itll be there when you get back.
Make a budget, and stick to it
A budget doesnt limit your freedom. It gives you the freedom to spend money on whats important to you. As youre planning the budget for the upcoming month, decide how much of your income will go toward your true essentials, how much will go toward giving, and how much will go toward your money goals (like paying off debt or building your emergency fund). After those things are covered, make sure to budget for a little fun.
Put boundaries around your social media
Follow the people who inspire you, and unfollow the ones who make you feel like you need more in order to be happy. I guarantee youll feel better about yourself, and save some money. Half the battle is knowing your tendencies and knowing how to help yourself.
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