A plan to examine the possibility of shifting the goal posts

I want to do better. It seems a bit pointless to write post after post in this vein but I really want to do better and there is currently a disconnect. When I first started this financial journey, I was in a dire state. I had no savings. I had over £30,000 of debt and was unsure about how much I owed. I didn’t have a place to stay because I was subletting my room to pay the bills. I had a frayed relationship with my family because they were tired of my irresponsible behaviour and frivolous spending. My 2 closest friends were barely speaking to me. I’d lost my girlfriend. My life was fraught with the direct consequences of poor financial decisions. It was kind of easy to make changes because I needed to change to survive. One year on, things are better, more stable and there isn’t a burning need to change further.

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Celebrating life in Madrid last year

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September spending update | A woeful example of a lack of control

The last week of September was weird because I busted my knee and ankle and had to spend the better part of a week resting, icing and elevating my left leg at home. I didn’t see many people or do many things and I got lulled into a false sense of [spending] security. Today, I went through the books and here are the findings on my spending last month:

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The cost of thrifty | An update on the 21 day thrifty workout

So a few days ago I decided to do my best to reverse the crush of my overspending. I set out to side-hustle, drink only water/black tea, eat home-made or free food 85% of the time, walk or cycle everywhere and try to rack up the no-spend days with an overall goal of raising my savings rate till it hurts. Here’s a review of how the first 7 days went.

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Random internet picture – this is what my notebook looks like though

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My 21-day thrifty workout

I need to pay rent in a few days and I haven’t got the money in my current account. I have done some side-hustling recently and am owed enough money to cover the difference. I also loaned someone £350. However, that’s not the only spending I’ve done. I’ve really done some serious damage via my food and socialising categories.

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A somewhat frugal visit to Berlin

I was lucky enough to take a city break in Berlin a couple of weeks ago. My mate’s a nanny and gets time off when her “family” is away. She happened to be going to Frankfurt so we tacked on our first visit to Berlin – a city that has been in the top 5 of my travel list for a few years now. Here’s a breakdown of what we did and how much the trip cost me.

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The Berlin cathedral church which we learnt about on the Original ‘free’ walking tour

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Anatomy of a spendthrift – an unfettered amount of thrill-seeking

Yesterday, I opened and read an article by Mindfully Spent about the power of habit. She talks about how, as a naturally erratic person, it’s taken her a while to build good habits and the impact those habits have had on her financial status. ‘A while’ was about 6 weeks. She successfully stopped paying for parking, cut back on buying coffee and started planning and prepping meals in advance. It apparently took her around 6 weeks to achieve these goals. She said, and I quote:

How did I know that I’d made a real change? My whole mindset about paid parking shifted. Now, the cost savings and the extra exercise I get when I use free parking feels like a reward. There have been one or two days when I thought I might have to pay, and I dreaded the idea. Once a mindless convenience, the expense of parking now feels like a horrible waste.

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Watching P!nk a few weeks ago was super thrilling!

 

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