This is the time of the year when festivities begin to ring in across the globe and businesses are looking to salvage the massive dent caused by pandemic in the first half through aggressive marketing campaigns. While everyone wants a booming economy and return to normalcy, it may be important to not get drown by the deluge of offers but stay rationale and frugal with money.
Does this graphic resonate with you? If it does, don’t worry as you have well-wishers (read credit card companies, peer to peer lending, personal loan departments) waiting in wings to lend you a helping hand but mind you only till the next paycheck or the next or the next till you find yourself in this vicious cycle. The way to break out of it is being judicious with the money in good times so that they can help you stay afloat during the bad ones. There could be a common tendency to mistake frugality with living miserly or cutting corners but to people who have adopted it means living conciously and not giving into impulsive buys. An important dimesion of this aspect is not leaning on future cashflows for present day expenses – rather frugality has its root in paying it forward to that unknown friend called Mr. Future. If the above thoughts convey that am anti-credit, its not the case as I earn my living through this. The whole idea is to not amass credit for avoidable expenses which create a burden on present and future earnings.
One thing which helps stay the course is putting a budget for everything including shopping and indulgence. I wish the ecommerce sites, credit cards and other such platforms had a blocking mechanism which could help put filter when the budget is crossed but they dont for their own good. Thus, we can train our mind and heart (!!) to have these filters in place and not keep adding the stuff to the cart just because we liked it. This would help us from going to the extreme that the below whatsapp forward suggested to me and infact prompted this write-up.
The availability of credit has led to economic boom and monetary expansions by governments have been touted as the one of the most effective tools which can see the world through the pandemic but as individuals, lets focus on putting our house in order first before trying to aid the governments and economy through unchecked spending habits. I brought it here myself before you turn around with this most convinient reply for indulgences. So next time you have the urge to max out on your credit card or take a personal loan, have a quick look at your savings account to see if the present balance could support this purchase. These seemingly small concious efforts could culminate into long term powerful habits such that we wont need these forwards or cartoon strips to remind us to stay on course.
Till then Happy (and Mindful) Shopping!