Hey guys, and welcome to back to the Blog! Thanks for
Todays post is going to be my VERY OVERDUE (!!) 1 month update on my No Buy 2019 Challenge. I’m actually on Month 2 now, watch out for that update coming next week.
You can find my rules for this challenge here, and the 1 week update here. Now let’s get into the nitty gritty of this month!
So, the main thing that I have noticed this month, is that
the less I buy, the less I actually want to buy. I’m not sure if its because
I’m avoiding the shops and malls more, or whether its just a habit that I’m
growing out of. They say it takes 28 days to break a habit, and this seems to
be the case for me. I’m specifically talking about books, homewares, clothes,
makeup and perfume here.
The 1 exception to this, is Costa Coffee. This is still a
struggle. A new Costa Drive Thru (my favourite kind of coffee shop!) has just
opened up on the route I take to my Boyfriends house. I’ve had 2 free Costa coffees this month, 1
from my boyfriend and 1 because I had enough loyalty points on my Costa Card.
It’s made the urges worse, that’s for sure. After some careful consideration
I’ve decided that it’s best just to cut it out altogether, even free ones.
As the month is progressing, I am adding less stuff to my Wishlist. I think this ties into my first point above, that I’m just not feeling the decide to buy as much stuff. The first 2 weeks were full of me adding item after item to my Wishlist, and that has definitely calmed down in the last few weeks.
I’m not running out of anything as fast as I thought I
would. I imagined I would be in need of new skincare by now, some new
foundation, or a new jumper. Actually, the only things that I have run out of
are my Nivea Foaming Facewash and Sanex Shower gel, both of which can be
replaced with products that I already own.
In my first post about my No buy 2019, I mentioned that I was considering buying a lightbox for my YouTube Channel. I have decided not to. The days are getting longer, and lighting is reasonable…for England, at least! During the latter part of the year, I may have to add a lightbox to my Birthday or Christmas list.
I’ve already saved over £180! This is not from just avoiding
unnecessary shopping, but also on parking in the mall and extra petrol costs
getting to the clothes shops. Not to mention the amount of time it’s saved me!
I have also added another caveat to my No Buy Year, which is
that meeting up with friends and taking part in activities are not included in
the No Buy. Which means that I can still go out with my friends, meet up for a
coffee, take the kids to the cinema etc. To be honest, this happens so rarely
that I don’t see a problem with it. The No Buy Challenge is about avoiding
consumerism, not depriving myself and my kids of having fun. Of course, I’ll
suggest free activities such as a picnic in the park, or a game of footie on
the beach etc, but I’m not going to worry if we end up at the cinema or bowling
So, that is it for month 1! I expect that it will become
harder as the months roll on, but for now all is going smoothly!
You can click on my YouTube video above to watch an extended version of this post, where I also answer questions that I have received about my No Buy Challenge over on Instagram. Speaking of Instagram, if you aren’t already following me there, I’d love it if you did! You can find me here!
Thanks so much for reading, and I’ll be back next week with my 2 month update!
Today I’m starting something a bit different on the blog. I’ve really been losing interest in blogging recently if I’m honest, and I think that a large part of that is because I’m not writing about things that I want to write about. I’ve been too worried about people not being interested, or losing readers etc. But I have realised that I cant continue to blog about things that don’t excite me, and hopefully my passion for a topic will come through.
Up until this point, I have mainly been focusing on writing about the Baby Steps by Dave Ramsey. This is because I wanted a reference point to direct people to when they asked me how I got out of debt (if you want to, you can read my story about that HERE).
Now that is done, I want to expand the topics that I write about on here. The main focus this year (2019) is that I am doing a No Buy Year.
Now, I know a lot of you are probably thing ‘But it’s
already March!’ and you’d be correct, but better late than never! So, when I say
No Buy ‘Year’ I really mean No Spend ‘rest of the year’.
What is a No Buy Year?
Essentially, a No Buy Year is where I do not purchase
anything new for the entire year. There are exceptions to this, which I’ll
cover later in in this post. But this is the overriding theme of 2019.
Why do a No Buy Year?
The main reason is to get my spending habits under control. When
I was paying off debts, I accounted for every penny, I bought nothing (apart
from the very occasional item) that I didn’t think was necessary, and as a
result I reached my financial goal at that time, which was paying off debt.
However, skip forward 12 months and a lot of small but
unnecessary and pointless things have crept back into my budget. My main aim inn
2019 is to eliminate these items.
My aim this year is to build up my 6-month emergency fund. The
things that have been added to my current budget are not getting me back into
debt, and are not things that I cannot afford…but they are also not helping me
to reach this financial goal. Plus, I am not happy with how I’ve been spending
money, nor what I have been spending money on. I want to break away from
consumerism and accumulating ‘stuff’ and become a much more ethical consumer. Just
as an example: I am a HUGE lover of Costa Coffee and what was a 1 a week habit
has turned into a 3-4 a week habit, costing about £10 a week. This is a total
waste of money, and I would rather have that money in my bank account.
Rules of my No Buy Year
The main rule of the whole year is not to buy anything that
is not 100% necessary.
Predominantly, this mean no takeaway coffee, no make-up, no
clothes, no perfume, no homewares and no books. No acrylic nails or waxing, and
I will groom my dogs myself instead of taking them to the groomer (£25 a time
I’d also like to make sure I’m not buying more in other
essential areas like food, to make up for not being able to spend in the
non-essential areas. So, to do this, I’m planning on doing 1 big monthly shop,
with weekly small weekly top ups for fresh food.
-The big exception is that I will not put the health or
safety of my family at risk. For example, I will be buying sun tan lotion in
the summer. Not doing so would just be irresponsible on my part. I will of course
try my best to limit my budget.
-Christmas and Birthdays. Luckily my children are older and
are used to having smaller Christmas and Birthday presents, so this isn’t going
to be too much of a problem. The limit I have set is £100 per child.
-If something that I need to have and already own breaks and
cannot be fixed, I am allowed to replace it UNLESS I have a similar item that
will do the same job. For example, if I have a T-shirt that breaks, I won’t replace
it because I already have several others.
-However, as well as not buying anything, I am also trying
really hard to focus on buying ethically and sustainably. So, if/when I do NEED
to buy something, I will be making sure that it is as sustainable and ethically
produced as possible. This goes along with the fact that I am trying to reduce
my plastic consumption too.
-Freebies are allowed! If I get offered something for free,
if I have points/money on loyalty cards already, I will be allowed to use them.
As long as I am not handing over any cash or using a debit/credit card, it is
allowed. From memory, I have £10 on a Marks and Spencer gift card that I have
not used yet. I’m aiming to save this to buy my Mum a birthday present, or to
just give to her for her birthday. That means I won’t have to actually spend
any money myself, but she still gets a present. Or I might just use it in a few
weeks when its Mother’s Day here in the UK.
Potential Problems I’m expecting, and how I’m planning to overcome them.
-I am a HUGE lover of Costa Coffee. And within the last few
months the building works have begun for a new Costa to be built in my town. I
have NO CLUE how I am going to overcome this. Its my biggest downfall by far.
To combat this, I am going to use my coffee machine at home
more. At the moment I get my Costa on the school run. Instead of doing that, I am
planning on making a coffee and bringing it with me on the school run. Plus, I will
be leaving my wallet at home.
-Date nights are also something that we have had to adapt. Usually,
date night is a Coffee (do you see a theme here?) and probably a Burger King. I’ve
spoken to my boyfriend about this and he is more than happy to sit at home with
some popcorn and watch The Walking Dead together instead. He is trying to reach
some money goals himself, so he is happy to save the money too.
Potential Positives of doing a No Buy Year.
I really am expecting this challenge to be…well, challenging! Especially emotionally. I want to find out where this desire to buy things I don’t need comes from, how I can get that feeling from somewhere else, and how it makes me feel to stop buying.
Also, as someone who buys things almost daily, I can foresee
that I am going to have a lot of free time on my hands. There are 2 things in particular
that I want to do this year; learn BSL (British Sign Language) and German. I’m
always complaining that I don’t have the time to, but I also always seem to
have a spare hour to browse online shops.
This concludes my No Buy Intro post!
I’ll be uploading and posting regular updates, maybe weekly or monthly ones depending on what works best. I’m also interested in doing Anti-Hauls (things I didn’t buy this month etc) as well as other types of content. Let me know below if there is anything specific you’d like to see, either in video or blog post format.
For now, I’ll be back on Tuesday with an update with how the first week went!
See you then, Claire.