Its funny, because it just kind of snuck up on me. All this spending started with a treat here, a splurge there, another one off. Each time I would tell myself, just this one time. Each time I would tell myself, this is it, no more splurging. I would tell myself once I have this, I wont want anything else. Once I buy this for our house, it will be complete. I kept giving into the lie. I kept looking for stuff to fill me up when I was bored, mad, happy, excited,or sad. I kept shopping. All of the money was unbudgeted.
Do you know the feeling I am talking about? The lie that we hear in our heads of "If I just had _______, then everything would be complete." What do you fill in the blank with?
These past few months kind of feel like death by a thousand cuts. I have not purchased one thing that has been super extra extravagant, it has been a lot of small trips. I think I have swiped my debt card at Target 100 times in the past 3 months. I am serious about that.
All this time, as I spent too much money, I always felt bad about it, and I told myself this was the last time. But, it was never the last time. As someone who prides herself on discipline, it is something that I have been severely lacking for the past few months.
It all stopped yesterday. P was totaling up our receipts from August to see what we spent, and he couldn't even finish because we had swiped our card so many times. There were so many random purchases that he could not tell what they were for. Last night P lovingly confronted me and we had a great discussion about our finances.
I just got caught in that consumerist hamster wheel. All the money is coming in, but we were not making much progress because of our spending. Now, it was not all me. We ate out a lot, and bought things when we were together, but I defiantly led the pack. I didn't say no to much, and I was so flippant about money. Honestly, it felt like I was about 3 steps left of center. I could see and feel where I needed to be. I could see where my old frugal self had been, but I kept spending and I ignored that voice in my head that told me what I was doing was wrong.
We are not in financial ruin, nor are we hurting at all, I hope that is clear. But, for very disciplined couple, this has been a spendy summer. I had to make 2 purchases today, a train ticket for the month, and a stop at the bank to pull our fun money. I am handing my debit card over to P for the week. I have our envelopes for food or gas, but we don't need anything. I am putting a freeze on spending this week.
Honestly, it feels good to get "caught." It feels good to be honest. It felt good to be confronted.
As I sit here and look around, I see how much I have. I don't need to buy anything else right now. I am content. I have found my way.
What could you fill in the blank with? Are you giving in or holding strong?