This has been quite a trial for me as I have had to stop all the frugal living in the house in the name of sanity. I had no idea what that would do to our pocket book and no idea what it would do to being able to get back on track. I thought that it would be ok to just take some time off. We had a little extra money and it woudl be ok. Boy was I unprepared for what was about to come.
I want to first establish that I don’t look back and regret my decision to stop for a while. I had prayed about ti and I knew it was what I needed for myself and my family at the time. So if at any point you feel like you need to do this, don’t fret about your decision as long as you KNOW it is right for you, then you should do it and just live with whatever things happen knowing that you felt like it was right for you.
ok, so back to what I have learned. This may be come a random series as I learn more and more of the tricks and make mistakes in getting back on track with all this. It is still a learning process for me, I have never taken such a long break form this and taken all my focus away from frugal living.
- When getting back on track allow lots of time: This isn’t a fast process no matter how much you hope it would be. You can’t switch frugality on and off like a light switch. It has to be relearned and you have to be reminded of what worked for you and what didn’t. So when you are getting back on the band wagon with the lifestyle, don’t rush it or think you will be able to jump back on and make no mistakes. You will make lots of mistakes and have lots of problems. This is ok, be sure to cut yourself some slack and look at every situation as a learning situation.
- Mistakes= Progress: I know that sounds kind of wrong, but it is true. You don’t go backwards with your mistakes, you make progress because you are learning and growing. So don’t think of them as a problem, think of them as a good thing. As you make mistakes you learn what not to do and wont do it again.
- Allow a Little Wiggle Room in Your Grocery Budget: I had our budget down to a science. We had it down to $30 a week and we were thriving on it. I am finding that I can’t do that any more. I am needing a bit of extra for a couple weeks or months to get our stock back up to where it needed to be. I can’t be where I was budget wise because I am not where I was frugality wise. I will get back to it and our budget will be great!
- When Catching up on Coupons Only Cut What you REALLY Will Use: This can be hard because you have spent so much time thinking you have to cut all your coupons. You think, “What if you need the coupon for the money maker and you don’t have it?” But the fact is that there will always be more sales, there will always be more coupons and there will always be more money makers. You may miss one or 2, but you will get burned out all over again if you try to cut 1-2 months worth of coupons in a week or 2. So to help you to stick to it just cut the coupons you will really use. Then you can go back to how you used to cut them when you get caught up.
Each of these is so important to getting yourself back on track because it is these things that will help you keep your sanity while relearning the frugal life. I already feel so much better about myself doing the few things I have done thus far. I know I have a long way to go but I feel accomplished at the same time. Baby steps gets you to the goal!!!