When I first quit my full-time job and started couponing, I was hooked! I guess you could say that I caught the bug and dove in full force. I enjoyed the thrill and challenge of stretching every hard-earned buck so that we could not only survive on The Teacher’s Salary, but thrive!
When we sold our first home and moved in with a relative in 2012 while we renovated our new house, I no longer had easy access to the internet so my money-saving efforts became much more challenging and required a lot more effort. Not only that, but I was caring for a toddler with another little one on the way.
The fatigue had set in and the excitement for couponing had faded. I still did what I could to shop the sales and find some great deals, but I no longer had the time or resources to continue at the pace I was going (which may have been a good thing in order to avoid burnout).
Saving money doesn’t just happen on its own. If it did, the whole world would be doing it. It all boils down to this…saving money is a job.
Here are some examples of the time spent:
– Printing/clipping/organizing coupons
– Reviewing coupon sites for their coupon match ups before shopping
– Scouring deals on Craigslist, eBay, or at thrift stores rather than paying full retail
– Shopping around at different stores or websites before making your purchase
Trying to save money takes time and effort (although I would definitely recommend you give it some time and try new techniques to make it easier for you), which is why many people quit and give up. But, I have found that there are so many rewards! Otherwise, there is no way I would still be doing this.
I may not be at a place in life where I can bring much income in to help support my family, but I can be proud of the work I do in order to save my family’s income. In order to help you stay motivated to keep up your money-saving efforts, here are some ideas for keeping it fun! If you hate your job, you’re not going to want to continue doing it, right?
1. Bring along a frugal friend
Sometimes it can be lonely when you are a money-saver. It can get tiring and sometimes you might feel like you are the only one who has to work so hard to make your money last all month. So, why not bring a frugal friend along who understands your shopping habits and you can enjoy the work together? You could bring a non-frugal friend too if you’d like and maybe you’ll encourage them.
2. Set a goal and see if you can beat it
Some people really enjoy a challenge. I love the thrill of coming in under my allocated budget, so setting small goals and beating them can be so much fun.
3. Share your savings story with someone
I love coming home from a shopping trip and showing my savings to The Teacher. He laughed at me at first when I would take photos and post about my trips, but he wasn’t laughing when he saw how much money I saved. When I come home from CVS now, he often asks to see what I got and how much I spent. Just like a good review you get from your boss or a good grade on a test, share your success with someone.
4. Let your creative juices flow
There are times when trying to save money that you have to get creative. Perhaps you don’t have the money for a Christmas gift, so you find a cute project to make instead. Or maybe you have a fancy function to attend, but you are forced to find a way to find some inexpensive clothes to wear or re-purpose something that you already have. Yes, it is work, but it can be so rewarding when you see the end result. Perhaps you will learn a new skill in the process.
5. Reward yourself after a job well done
After a hard day at work, who doesn’t enjoy a nice treat? Perhaps you could make yourself a cup of coffee or take a long bubble bath as a treat for working so hard. Or maybe you could even buy a frugal reward for yourself if the money is in your budget. While the purpose is to save money, sometimes a little reward is worth the money if it keeps you going.
Just today, I stumbled upon THIS over at The Krazy Coupon Lady after I had already begun writing today’s post. It has some great tips for being a more effective at your work-from-home job as a couponer.
If you are finding yourself overwhelmed and tired at the thought of saving money, remember that your job is an important one. There is so much more to it than just clipping coupons, so try to have some fun with it!!
Do you have any tips for how to make money-saving fun?
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