Recent Divine Discussions

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Another step in battling my ESS

As I told you guys in a previous post, I suffer from emotional shopper syndrome (ESS). I have been taking a number of steps to curing myself of that.

  • Remove all credit cards from my wallet
  • Remove all debit cards except for my spending account
The two steps above have worked to a certain degree. But I had a couple of rough bumps this week and I was still compelled to spend money on things I don't need, the only difference now is that I could resort to using my debit card instead of my credit cards. This isn't what I was aiming for. Initially I wanted to stop increasing my credit card debt. But now I want to stop my overspending totally. This will lead to more money in my spending account that can be directed to small bills or that I can use to towards my smaller credit card accounts.

I also
noticed that the way I grocery shop may be causing me to waste money. Since my daughter has been gone I have time to take care of things more frequently. This means I don't wait to the last minute to grocery shop or wait until my fridge is almost bare (I used to think that is when you should shop). Well I have been going to the grocery store almost every week. And for some reason I have only spent at most $25 a week. That means I am spending no more than $100 a month on groceries. So why when I shop the other way do I spend over $200 on groceries?? The only conclusion that I can draw is that shopping every week allows me to purchase things I know I will use that week. While with shopping once or twice a month, I purchase items that I MAY need or items that I have but I assume I will run out of before my next shop day. Therefore I spend more money. And majority of the time, I don't use everything I purchased. I don't know how many times I have had to clean out my fridge because one or more items went bad before I could get to them. Thats money wasted.

So based on all this I have come up with another strategy. I have decided to give my self an allowance of $30 a week. I don't normally carry cash on me so I will withdraw the cash from an ATM or store (using cash back) every weekend in order to use for the following week. The $30 a week will only be for groceries and essentials like toothpaste, toilet paper, etc. If I don't use ALL $30 one week it will roll over to the next week and I will only withdraw enough to equal a total of $30. I am still keeping my spending account debit card in my purse but it is wrapped up in foil and I have a sticky note on it that says "Only 4 Emergencies".

I know this all seems extreme but getting rid of my credit card debt and buying a home mean the world to me. If I need to sacrifice and do some crazy ish then so be it. It will be all worth it in the end. Hopefully my new strategy will curb my emotional spending.

Unless I win the lottery.............then all bets are off!!!!!!!! LMAO.


SavingDiva said...

This sounds like a really good idea. I don't think it sounds extreme at all.

Sistah Ant said...

i have an allowance for groceries, too, and it really helps. another thing that may help is to eat before you go shopping, so that you're not looking at the food with hungry eyes...

Dimples said...

Thanks guys

I never thought about having an allowance for groceries. Now I wish I had one in place long time ago.

Velvet Jones said...

Adding on to sistah ant's fine suggestion of eating before shopping, it also helps me to plan the meals I want to prepare for the week then make a list. I find I save myself a lot of time and money by only shopping with a list. :)