How do you keep from feeling deprived?
Most people associate frugality with self-deprivation. Most of us know that this doesn't have to be the case.
But it's also true that a lot of people do go into extreme frugality -- at least when they are winnowing down credit card debt. Other people live close to the bone out of necessity. Still others prefer a minimalist approach.
So this all begs the question: How do you live this way without feeling deprived?
I suppose the question is less interesting to people who are on a temporary crash-course in frugality. If you know that it will take exactly one year of being miserly, well it's probably a lot easier to stomach. You can just count down the days every time a rogue, materialistic desire washes over you.
But what about people who are running a marathon rather than sprinting? What do you folks do? Are there certain priorities that you're willing to budget for? Do you use your rewards programs as "fun money"?
Tim and I have a mix of ways we budget for sanity savers, as we call them: rewards programs, coupons, loyalty programs, and mystery shopping.
Honestly, this post was going to be an all-encompassing list of those items. But the more I look at it, the more each subject merits its own post. So I think I will, instead, do a series.
In the meantime, tell me what your priorities are. What are you willing to spend a little on? What's your ceiling for these so-called sanity savers? What techniques or programs do you use to get affordable entertainment or luxuries?
Labels: frugal hacks