Did I survive my shopping ban?

4/12/19

The answer is yes. I've always been quite savvy with my money but I also like shopping a lot. Although I'm not the kind of person who spends £200 in one go, probably not even £100. I like to pick up things here and there instead of going out for the sole purpose of buying things, but this got out of hand and it took me a while a to realise. 

When I moved into my first flat, my room was tiny. I'm talking under the stairs cupboard tiny, enough to fit a single bed and a wardrobe, and maybe squeeze some small drawers next to the bed but forget about having space to walk around in the room. That helped with not being able to buy things, I just didn't have enough space for anything but then I moved house and well... I went from a cupboard to a proper room around three and a half times the size of it, where I had space for a shelves, dresser, a double bed, wardrobe, bedside table and even a desk. And I still had room to put my yoga mat down. The excitement of filling all the drawers and shelves was real, so like I said, I started buying things here and there and on top of what I already had my room was pretty much full in a month.

A few months passed and my boyfriend moved in with me so I had to figure out a way to make my stuff take only half of the space. A couple of Muji drawers and under the bed boxes and we managed pretty well.

Fast forward to February 2019. My boyfriend was moving away and I had all the space for myself again but at the same time I knew that I would be moving house again in a few months. Seeing all my stuff just sitting there started to be really overwhelming. I realise I had a lot more clothes than I needed (and to be honest, I didn't wear half of it) and just too much stuff in general, so I decided to impose myself a shopping ban and I started decluttering. It went really well. I still don't miss any of the things I got rid of and almost 9 months later I think I could donate a few more things.

Now let's talk about the ban.

Living in London is already pretty expensive as it is so if you add a t-shirt for £8.99 on Monday, that cute pair of socks with a rainbow print on Wednesday and head scarf that you saw someone wearing and you need in your life asap, it can become a living paycheck to paycheck situation. But like I said I've been always good with my money and in my head I've always known that I need to save. 

After paying for my rent, bills, basic food and the overpriced public transport, I was putting away as much as I could. Even before the ban, but cutting down on that extra purchase every now and then I was being able to save a lot more a month. 
Also I had a savings goal I wanted to reach before moving and I managed to pass it by a few pounds.

It wasn't easy. Seeing friends wearing something new and asking where it's from just in case. Saying no to going out for a meal, not only because eating out is more expensive, but also because that was an extra trip on the tube and I didn't have a weekly card anymore.
Walking to the tube station was saving me around £11 a week on transport, and since I didn't have a Monday to Friday job and I wasn't going anywhere on my days off it was cheaper for me to do pay as you go.

I knew that after I moved I would be unemployed for while (it wasn't as long as thought it would be) so I was trying hard to save everything I could, and some people might think I'm tight with my money or that I'm boring but I was just trying to be more careful and think about the future. 

I'm sill on a semi-ban. I'm not earning as much as I was earning in London and we had to pay a deposit, rent, bills and bought pretty much a flat worth of furniture. Also Christmas is around the corner and for the first time in forever I don't have a whole cupboard full of presents for friends and family ready to wrap. I'm trying to be more conscious with what I get for people this year but maybe I'll talk about that in a different post. 

I know this was a bit of a ramble but I think I made a point. Saving is important. It doesn't matter how much you earn, you need to put money just in case, it doesn't have to be a lot. I saved for over a year before I came to England and I'm so glad I did because last minute disasters happen and you'll be thankful that your past self opened a savings account. 

Do you guys have any saving saving tips? I'm all ears/eyes.

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