【双语阅读】How to stop spending money

How to Stop Spending Money

You’re a clever gal.

Which probably means that your mind can have a, well, mind of its own.

You can talk yourself into things, out of things, even over things (he always did look kind of lame in his favorite fedora). When your mind is healthy, strong, and on the angelic side of your shoulder, talking you out of overspending, great. But when it’s a weak and flabby devil’s advocate, telling your better self, “But it’s on sale… and you’ll be getting that extra commission check soon, ” then it’s time to bring in the big guns: a little combat training to beat those excuses into shape.

Below, your guide to creating a mind of anti-shopping steel: the top 10 spending excuses we use—and how to squash them. Think of these as squats for your spending “buts.” Now get to work, and repeat as necessary!

Martin Poole/Getty Images

Excuse 1: But It's On Sale

(Also known as: It's really cheap; it's only $12.99; it's such a great deal.)

Ah, the lure of the deal. Retailers so understand that people want a deal that an entire Groupon-inspired industry has spawned from this, and outlets even create fake markdowns on their price tags. This will require a mind of steel, but you must train yourself to ignore the base price and focus only on the offered price. Your only considerations should be: (1) Whether you really need it, and (2) whether the price fits within your budget. Even big discounts can mean big spending.

We all work hard (unless you're born wealthy or won the lottery, in which case, um, good for you). Donna Summer put it best when she said, "She works hard for the money." That's right. We all work hard. It's not that you shouldn't use your hard-earned money to enjoy life—you should. It's just that "working hard" shouldn't be an excuse to spend. After all, it's not like your income automatically expands proportionally to how difficult work has been lately. Your budget trumps how you feel about your work stress. (But if it consistently doesn't add up, look for a job where you'll be compensated better.)

This is a sneakier and much more persuasive version of number two. In this excuse lies the promise of money that awaits you, whether a commission, bonus, raise or even a new job salary. It's certain, right? At least 90 percent, if not 99 percent. No, it's definite, or at least probably going to happen… The worst thing next to spending money you don't have is spending money you don't have yet. But in reality, it's the same thing. Life is unpredictable, and anything can happen. So don't pull any triggers until the money hits your account. Until it does, you simply don't have that money.

Excuse 4: But It's Fall Fashion/Holidays/Springtime

We love the changing seasons to keep life interesting. But seasons are not a built-in excuse to spend, no matter what the retail and advertising industry would have you believe with all its persuasive imagery of lovely women draped in cozy sweaters and boots or fluttery spring dresses. You probably have everything you need in your closet already. Think of enjoying what each season offers that doesn't involve buying: crisp air and pumpkins, snow on branches, buttery sunshine and buds peeping from the ground.

Excuse 5: But I Might Go Hiking in the Andes/Attend a Gallery Opening inParisOne Day

Buy for the life you have, not the one you want. Sometimes we buy things because of the lifestyle they represent, and how they embellish the person we want to be. Don't just ignore these urges—examine them. Your desired purchases may be telling you something—that you yearn for more adventure, culture, or socializing in your life. So make the life changes happen. Get the stuff later—if you even need it then.

We teasingly call one of our friends the "suckah shoppah" because when we go out as a group and someone buys an item, she's easily persuaded to buy it too. Don't underestimate the power of influence others can wield over your spending habits—and you don't have to be actually shopping with them; it can simply be the influence of coworkers or friends who are buying fall clothes, traveling or living a certain lifestyle. Tune them out. What matters is you and your budget. No one else will be around to bail you out later if you get in over your head.

Excuse 7: But It's My Wedding/Birthday/Cousin's Bat Mitzvah

That's right, we said wedding. We're not playing. Special occasions are one of life's greatest joys, but sometimes the desire for the perfect outfit or decorations or "things" can make us lose sight of what's more important—the relationships, the people and the celebration. What still trumps all your spending decisions is—you guessed it—your budget. Pre-plan a budget for special occasions for the year, and stick to it. Be creative about how you can repurpose or borrow dresses and accessories. It's not about deprivation, it's about shifting focus to what's more important—the very reason for the celebration.

Excuse 8: But I Can Return It

This is high up on the scale of sneaky excuses. Once you get home with the item, you can grow attached, the reasons to return it fade or you just can't be bothered. If you're a returnaholic, it's not healthy (or time-savvy) to get into a cycle of buying and returning—and it's not ethical to buy something, wear it and return it. So save return policies for exchanging a size or replacing a broken item, not for changing your mind. Chances are, once you buy it, you'll keep it.

Excuse 9: But I've Been So Good Lately

Congrats if you've been sticking to your budget and cutting your spending. Just don't undo all your hard work by blowing it with a giant splurge. The best way to handle this is to give yourself specific goals, and as you reach them, set aside a certain "treat" amount for reaching your milestones (i.e. If I can save $500 each month, I'll treat myself to a $50 splurge at the end of the month). If in spite of this you find yourself uncontrollably splurging for "being good, " it can be a sign that your goals are too aggressive. Recalibrate them so that you can make real progress, even if it seems slower.

Excuse 10: But I've Been So Bad Already

This is the equally toxic cousin to number nine. Sometimes when we screw up, we say, "What the heck, I'm so over budget already" and let the credit card fly. It's the "lost cause" kind of thinking, when in fact every day is a chance to start fresh and exercise that non-spending muscle. If you have a bad day, don't give up or beat yourself up. Just start the following day with an even stronger resolve. Everyone messes up—the key is what we do with our failures. Use your spending mistakes to inspire you to do better—don't give them more power by wallowing in them.







(还有:真便宜;只要12.99美元;很划算。)啊,交易的诱惑。零售商们深谙此道:人都想占便宜,所以整个团购产业就此诞生;分销商们甚至在价格标签上做文章,做虚假的减价。这就要求意志坚定了,必须训练自己忽略原始价格,而只注意现价。 只需 考虑:(1)是否真需要;(2)价格是否在预算内。大折扣意味着花大钱。




这是借口2的升级版,更狡猾,更有说服力。这个理由内含承诺:有钱等着你,无论是佣金、奖金、升职,甚至一份新工作的薪水。肯定的,对吧?如果没有99%的把握,至少有90%。不,这是明确的,或者至少可能发生的……花 还 没有到手的钱,糟糕程度只低于花了不属于自己的钱。而实际上,它们是一回事。生活无常,可能发生任何事情。所以,落袋为安前,不要蠢蠢欲动。直到那笔钱到手,你才拥有它。















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