Here’s a guest post from Courtney Phillips, with tips on making frugality easier. I especially like that she included cleanliness in her list. It’s not something that is often associated with frugality (and I’ll admit that I struggle with it), but I like the association that she makes. Anything that inspires me to clean is a good thing!
Five Qualities You Need To Be A Frugal Success:
Recession has come calling and it’s time to tighten our belts like never before. For those of us who are used to being frugal, it’s just another day at the office. But for those who have become used to spending at will, it’s going to take a bit of time to get used to pinching pennies and restraining ourselves from pulling out credit cards. If you’ve decided to go the frugal way, you need to apply yourself to the task with a great deal of dedication and determination because it is definitely not an easy task. Besides, you’ll also need these qualities in order to succeed at living frugally:
A thick skin: When you’re out with friends or family and they’re spending like there’s no tomorrow, you know you have to restrain yourself because you’re on a budget. Or you may have to skimp on presents for loved ones because of money constraints. These are times when you’re likely to be showered with comments and rude remarks that you’d rather not hear. But if you do, you must be able to brush them aside like water off a duck’s back or mud off a buffalo’s thick hide. If you let stuff like this affect you, it’s going to wreak havoc on your budget and your ideal goals to live a frugal life.
Creativity: You’ll have to be able to pick out the best deals from thrift and seconds stores so that your home and you look good and not like second-rate stuff. You’ll also have to get creative in order to make tasty dishes with ingredients that are at hand, fashion gifts out of things that are lying around the house, and use your imagination to entertain your kids in a cost-effective way.
Blindness (figuratively): You have to be able to turn a blind eye to people (relatives, friends, neighbors) who are spending a lot more money than you are. If you let envy get to you and try to keep up with them just to maintain appearances, you’re going to go off your budget and end up spending money that you don’t have.
Diligence: You need to be hardworking if you expect to be frugal. You’re going to have to cook your meals from scratch, forgo eating outside, give up most of your outdoor entertainment like visits to the movie theatres, grow your own garden for fresh fruits and vegetables, and so on. Besides this, you also have to work at your job to ensure that your source of income does not dry up.
Cleanliness: It’s easier to stretch out the life of appliances and other things around the house when you maintain them well – so if you keep your kitchen, bathrooms, floor and furniture clean everyday, you don’t have to worry about repairs and renovation costs. Your appliances are also likely to work trouble-free if you operate them correctly and keep them clean and free of stains and dust.
This post was contributed by Courtney Phillips, who writes about how to obtain a degree in accounting. She welcomes your feedback at CourtneyPhillips80 at gmail dot com.