By now, you’re surely aware of some of the aspects of a frugal lifestyle. You pack your lunch, turn out the lights in empty rooms, meal-plan, cut coupons, have given up buying coffee … so what’s next? Now, you start to accumulate the benefits of your frugality! Sure, the main benefit is a healthy bank account, but it’s not just your bank account that’s about to get richer. Embracing the frugal lifestyle will enrich your life in many ways.
Use Your Creativity
“Create, repurpose, and reuse” is basically the mantra of frugal living. Don’t buy something if you can make do without it or just plain make it! For instance, if your neighbor is throwing out a table with perfectly good legs, why not attach them to an old door to make a unique and completely free coffee table? Another creative frugal hack is making a rug from bread bags. Learning to sew, even if it’s just how to attach a button and sew a straight seam, will save you money by allowing you to repair your clothes. After you master the basics, you can let your creativity soar! For instance, many frugal fashionistas buy thrift store clothes and remake them at home.
Cut Down on Waste
Discarded table legs, thrift store rejects, and bread bags all require creativity to upcycle into desirable items, but doing so also saves these items from the landfill. The frugal lifestyle in general will also cut down on the waste you send to your local landfill. Buying in bulk versus individually packaged items, swapping bottled water for tap, and packing your lunch in reusable containers saves you money and protects the planet from extra trash. New things come wrapped in a lot of packaging, so each item you can buy used not only saves that item from the landfill but also reduces the amount of packaging waste you produce. Also, think of all of the things you didn’t buy because you embraced frugality. All of the production waste that would have been associated with those items never happened. And economical transportation, like used but fuel-efficient cars, using public transit, and walking, all cut down on the amount of fossil fuels you use in your daily life.
Expand Your Options
When you don’t live frugally, you might end up tied to a job you don’t particularly enjoy because you need to pay your bills. When you get raises, you might spend them upgrading your lifestyle, getting a bigger house, a better car, or nicer clothes. But what about if you live simply, save your money, and aren’t tied to a job to support your expensive lifestyle? Maybe you could take a year off and write a book. Perhaps you could stay home with your kids. Maybe you could pick up stakes and move to a farm. Embracing frugality gives you more options to follow your bliss.
There are so many options to help us live our best lives and plan for success, but we cannot plan for every unexpected life event. And, when we are faced with financial hardships that we are not well-prepared for, it is important to understand the lending options available. For those who are living frugally in order to correct poor financial decisions, personal loans or secured title loans may be a more viable options than traditional back loans.
Keep it Simple
Keeping up with the neighbors is exhausting. Once you decide that it doesn’t matter if your college classmates are moving into nicer, newer homes because your “starter” home is an excellent fit for your life, a certain amount of stress is lifted. The same goes for deciding that you don’t care what clothes are fashionable; you’re going to wear the clothes you like! And when you have one excellent pan instead of a whole rack full, your dishes won’t pile up in the sink because you really, really need that pan. Choosing less and choosing to love what you have brings a peaceful simplicity into your life.
Say Goodbye to Boredom
Frugality is not a passive state. It requires a lot of action! Gardening, mending clothes, repairing appliances, cooking, and doing home repairs all save you money but require time. Your hands and your brains are the best saving tools you have. So, while you might imagine a frugal life consisting of sitting in one chair in a dark room while you stare at a wall, the truth is very different. Along with staying busy saving money, you can also go out and enjoy low-cost activities in your community.
Imagine this: It’s the middle of the night, and you hear water. You investigate and find that your bathroom sink now closely resembles a fountain. What do you do? A frugal person will have (inexpensively!) acquired the tools and know-how to turn off the water and determine what happened. Sure, they might call a plumber for a big issue, but they know how to handle and evaluate simple problems. This knowledge can also apply to gardening, food production, car repairs, and other household needs.
Appreciate What You Have
When your life is full of stuff, the stuff loses meaning. But when you have less stuff, you appreciate everything you have, probably because you regularly use and come into contact with everything you have. You also learn to keep track of it better: You’d better not lose that marker if it’s the only one you have! So, pare down to the essentials, and chose to only have things in your life you know to be beautiful or believe to be useful.