Sometimes, despite our best efforts to create a realistic budget and save money, we could still be wasting so much money every day without us even realizing it.
I can’t tell you how many times I ended up wasting so much money on the most common things in an attempt to save money. And you know what the worst part was? I never even really noticed it.
Because the thing is, often when we are trying to save money and live a more frugal lifestyle, we always seem to focus on the BIG expenses, we only choose to see the LARGE purchases.
But what we don’t realize is, those small and unplanned daily expenses can easily add up and cost us way more than what we expected.
One thing that I’ve learned from experiencing my greatest financial struggle last year is if you want to save money, and I mean really save, build wealth or even start building an emergency fund, paying close attention to those smaller daily expenses can definitely help you save money in the long run.
Because I tell you, those things really add up.
I know that saving money can be tough and often, changing our financial situation may seem impossible but if you want to improve your finances and not make the same money mistakes again, paying close attention to those small and unplanned daily expenses is a must.
When I finally took the time to sit down and identify where and what I was spending my money on, I can’t tell you how surprised I was to know that I was actually wasting so much money on the most common and smallest things.
Things I barely even noticed and chances are, you might be wasting your money on these things too.
Here are 5 things you’re wasting your money on…
Taking frequent trips to the grocery store
As much as I hate to admit it but I use to waste so much money by throwing away food.
I used to buy things in bulk thinking that it will help me save money but I never really end up using all of them before they go bad, so some of the stuff just gets thrown out (I know, what a waste of money, right?)
So, after having to quit my job, I did everything I can to save money and I thought that I was doing that by taking more frequent trips to the grocery store.
Thinking that doing this will somehow prevent me from throwing away food and it did but the problem of taking frequent trips to the grocery store is, there is always a large possibility of you buying other things that are not on your list.
So, instead of just buying those two items that you really need, you end up going home with five more items.
And before you know it, you end up sabotaging your budget over it.
Now, I find that the best thing to do is to buy all the things that I need for at least a week, and before I even go to the grocery store, I always make sure to plan my meals ahead.
In that way, I know what I need to get and I’m certain that nothing gets thrown out.
Nowadays, it’s just so easy to sign-up for multiple subscriptions without really putting much thought into it.
We don’t really take the time and ask ourselves if this is something that we really need in the first place.
And since the upfront charges for these things are usually very low, we don’t really realize and notice how much these things are really costing us collectively.
And often, there are even subscriptions that we keep paying every month but we are barely even using.
I had these. I usually sign-up for a free trial on multiple subscriptions and since it can be difficult to keep track of all of them, I forget to cancel them and they end up charging me for months without me even noticing.
So, take the time to sit down and go through all your subscriptions. Keep the ones that you really need and cancel the ones that you no longer use and no longer add value to your life.
Also, if you like signing up for free trials (like me), what I do is I create a list of all the free trials that I’m a part of and I then set a reminder on my phone a day before the trial ends for each of them to make sure that I never miss it.
Making purchases just to make you happy
I’m definitely guilty of this. You see, I was stuck in a very stressful job that I didn’t love.
I was constantly feeling overwhelmed and super low. I felt empty. And in attempts of cheering myself up, I would buy things.
And every time I felt down, stressed and unhappy, I would spend my money on unnecessary things, things that I don’t need, just to fill the emptiness that I was feeling.
Yes, doing that made me happy but that kind of happiness doesn’t last long. It fades and pretty soon you’ll find yourself still feeling empty and in debt.
We need to remind ourselves that happiness that is found on possessions will always be short-lived. True and lasting happiness is not found and will never be found on possessions and material things, it is found within.
It’s best to find a healthier way to cope with stress. I found that doing something I love even if it’s just a hobby, really helps.
Buying in bulk
There’s no doubt that buying in bulk is a great way to save so much money — that is if you are able to use and consume all of them before they go bad.
As I’ve mentioned above, we used to love buying things in bulk thinking that we will just get around into using and consuming all of them before they go bad.
But we never do and as awful as it sounds, we always just end up throwing so much food away.
So, instead of saving money, we are just actually wasting it.
This is where meal planning comes in.
I found that meal planning, along with keeping a list of everything that you have with the date it goes bad is the best way to avoid food being thrown out.
Whether you want to save money, build an emergency fund or even pay off your debts, having your finances organized is definitely a huge help.
I was so bad at handling my money before. I was in debt, wasted so much money on unnecessary things, had no savings and I was living paycheck to paycheck.
After taking a hard look at where I was standing financially, I realized how being disorganized has greatly contributed to my financial woes.
Lack of organization can greatly sabotage your finances.
I mean if you are not organized, you end up missing payments, which eventually leads to fees.
If you don’t keep track of how you are spending your money, you end up wasting so much money without you even realizing it.
I tell you, if you want to achieve your financial goals faster, take the time to sit down and organize your finances.
By doing this you are giving yourself the chance to see the opportunities and areas you need to work on to improve your finances and to achieve your goals faster.
Being aware of how and what you are spending your money on is a vital step in helping you save money and achieve your financial goals.
I know it’s so easy to let things slip and waste money on the most common things and things that we don’t need, but if we pay more attention to how we are spending our money, it becomes a whole lot easier to avoid wasting it.