1. Remember your goal
When you first made the decision to live a more frugal lifestyle, you had a grand plan in mind. You wanted to spend less money so you can pay off your debt. You wanted to build up a savings that will let you comfortably quit your day job. You wanted the security of having a big emergency fund. Don’t let the daily grind make you forget your long-term financial goals.
2. Change how you think about your spending decisions
If you face your spending decisions with resentment, it won’t take long to become unhappy with the whole frugal lifestyle. Cutting back isn’t a punishment, so you don’t have to dread keeping your debit card in your wallet. Remember that you’re forgoing certain purchases so you can accomplish a bigger goal.
3. Think about what happens if you give up
Discouragement is a normal part of the journey to any long-term goal. The key to success is not to give in to negative thoughts telling you to abandon your goals. You can’t give up!
4. Don’t beat yourself up about setbacks
No path to success is straight, smooth, and obstacle-free. If you stray from your spending routine, just pick back up where you left off. Keep your setbacks in perspective. Maybe you bought a latte as a pick me up and you promised yourself you’d only drink coffee made at home or work. It’s ok. In the grand scheme of things, a small setback won’t derail your progress.
5. Celebrate small successes
Big financial goals may take years to achieve. In the meantime, celebrate your milestones. An extra grand in the bank or another credit card paid off are great reasons to give yourself a pat on the back. If you choose to spend a little money to celebrate – because let’s face it, you need to splurge a little every once in awhile – keep it small and within reason.
6. Live a little
Many diets and fitness plans allow for a “cheat day,” a day that you can stray from your regular healthy eating and indulge in some of your favorite foods. If living according to a tight budget feels too restricting, factor in some spending money. Make it enough to have some fun, but not so much that you blow your budget for the rest of the month.
7. Know that you’re not the only one to ever feel this way
There are dozens and dozens of people who share their personal finance journeys online through blog posts, comments, and social media. Thanks to these personal stories we know what the road to financial success really looks like. It isn’t always easy, and sometimes there are bumps, but keeping motivated and staying the course will help you get there.
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