new years resolutions 2013

Is it too late for my resolutions? Nah. Any time is good for a resolution.

When I started this blog I was really, really strapped for cash. Every penny was carefully regulated and every purchase severely scrutinized. Since starting the blog I have gone back to school, started a new career, and am now enjoying an income with a little more “wiggle room.”

Give me an inch and I’ll take a mile.

I maybe, maybe, have gotten a little too comfortable with that wiggle room. I have a goal of purchasing my first home in 2014, so it’s time to take a step back and put a few of my old rules back into place. I want to tighten the belt on my spending habits and go back to my super penny pinching ways. I’m posting them here today in hopes that A) they’ll make me feel accountable and B) maybe they’ll inspire you to do the same in 2013!

New Years Resolutions 2013

1. Enjoy people, not things.
Spending time with people is relatively free (depending on how you spend that time) and so much more fulfilling than buying things to cure your boredom. I resolve to have more quality time with friends!

2. Make purchases based on needs, not wants.
I used to have a strict rule – before making a purchase I would ask myself, “was I surviving without this item before?” If the answer was yes, then I wouldn’t buy it. That’s how I managed to cook for ten years with just one inexpensive chef’s knife. It did the job. End of story.

3. View food as nourishment, not entertainment.
This is a toughy because food is an awesome, full sensory experience. But, relying on food for entertainment can be bad for your wallet and waistline (plus it just makes me feel wasteful when I know there are so many people out there who are hungry). Eat for the energy and nutrients that you need, and not more.

4. No more shrugging off small purchases.
It’s gotten really easy to justify that $2 coffee or bagel when I’m at work. “I’m so tired, I’m working so hard, I SO deserve it.” WRONG. I’m strong. I don’t need “treats” to get me through the day. Plan ahead. Bring snacks or coffee from home. Those small purchases add up and every dollar counts.

It’s amazing how little changes can make a big difference. Stick to your goals and let your little successes fuel you towards major accomplishments. Stay positive, focus on the good in your life, and recognize that life is what you make of it. Have a happy new year, everyone! I wish you all the best in 2013!!

Also, I’d love to hear your resolutions or tips for living within your means. Share them in the comments below! Let’s motivate each other!