So this no-spend month was actually going rather well. I found it a little annoying having to be so careful at the grocery store and second-guessing meals with friends. I realized how many times I grabbed fast food just because it was convenient. I didn't miss buying clothes, browsing thrift stores, or even buying supplies for a new project (there is certainly enough already here to keep me busy). I only had Starbucks once this month, and didn't even really miss it.
However, by week three, I was just annoyed. T and K moved in with me, and there were a few things that I had to buy (like a baby gate to keep the dogs downstairs). I wanted to plan a meal out with a friend without thinking about the cost. I wanted to make a bunch of mini loaves of zucchini bread for my neighbors, or muffins for my sisters/brother/brother-in-law's kickball team, without thinking about the cost. So I just kind of...stopped thinking about it.
And yes, I know that there are many people who aren't so blessed. There are many people who don't have extra, who have to count these costs, and more people who don't even have enough. In light of that, this started to just feel like a silly little experiment, with no real value.
So, sometime in week three, I just stopped playing along. Partly for these reasons, but mostly because I was tired of it. Not a good reason, but there it is.
In end, though, there are a few things that I hope I've learned from this month:
- There is a difference between enjoying a meal out with friends or family, and just running by Chipotle because I didn't plan ahead, or because I didn't feel like cooking. If I really don't feel like cooking, there are plenty of quick, at-home options.
- Shopping is not a healthy hobby - at least not when you do it often. (Side note: I really can't figure out how I used to find time for just wandering around a store. Maybe this month has just been unnaturally busy, but really, where did my free time go?)
- Errands are dumb. Really, I used to actually enjoy running to this store then that one, because it was a quick, fairly mindless way to check things off my to-do list. Now whenever I add another errand to my list, I'm annoyed.