First, the number one way that people overspend is when they are bored. When you’re bored one option that comes to mind is shopping. “I’m bored; why not go buy something to take away my boredom.”
- Plan ahead> Before you get bored think of alternatives to shopping. Keep a running list of things to do instead that are cheap or free that you enjoy doing.
Second, people overspend when they are around friends. No matter what the case may be when we’re around friends having a good time money is no longer an object. You just basically get swept up in the commotions and fun of things that you don’t even think twice about how much something costs. You just swipe your card or hand over a couple bills.
- Plan ahead> When you know you're going to be around friends bring cash only. Leave your c.c. at home to avoid those temptations of "unconscious swiping." Also, before hanging out with friends plan ahead what you'll be doing. Think about cheaper alternatives then an expensive night out.
Third, we overspend on gift giving. When shopping for a gift it's hard to stay on a budgeted amount because what if you can’t think of anything in that price range? Most often then not we overspend because we found the perfect gift that just happens to be a little more. Plus, our friends and family are worth it. Birthdays and holidays only come once a year so why not splurge a little.
- Plan ahead> Shop for gifts throughout the year. If not physically, do it on paper. Keep a list of friends and families birthdays and other occasions that you have coming up that you'll be buying a gift for. Write down ideas as you come across them. This way you are not stuck at the last minute trying to think of what to get and end up overspending.
Fourth, I’m starving and there is no food in sight. Take me to the nearest restaurant fast! Overspend.
- Plan ahead> A real life saver can be to have snacks in your car. When you're running errands and doing other things that require a lot of hurried thinking you will get hungry fast. Always bring a snack even if you think you won't get hungry. You can also plan your route ahead of time to make it home around the times you get hungry.
Firth, we overspend when we don’t use cash. This has been said many of times that it’s harder to hand over your hard earn cash then to swipe a piece of plastic.
- Plan ahead> Pretty self explanatory. Try to carry cash on you when you're buying something. You can also keep a list of things you need when going out so you stick to it.
Sixth, not planning ahead causes overspending as well. Just a small example: when you have to run out to the liquor store to buy milk after it runs out you'll probably pay a higher price because you didn't buy it at the grocery store.
- Plan ahead> I think this one sums up a lot of our overspending. Most of the time try to plan ahead. I know that won't always be the case so be prepared for some days when you just didn't think ahead about the things you need.
There are probably thousands of more ways that we overspend. What ways do you overspend or see others overspending? How would you overcome that temptation?