So I go really up and down with my feelings about budgeting, etc. I realize that what it comes down to is a sense of entitlement. After a few weeks (or months or days) I start to feel entitled to the things I’m denying myself. First it started as feeling entitled to juice (we had stopped buying anything but milk) and then I really wanted Eggo waffles (instead of the generic) and then I wanted Coco Puffs. I felt like I was entitled to eat the name brand things I had always had. Why can’t I have juice if I want it? Don’t I deserve juice? I felt like I was sacrificing something I didn’t have to be.
So then our trips to Aldi kept getting supplemented by a trip to Cub (you can’t purchase name brand anything at Aldi) and then finally on Monday we bought all of our groceries at Cub. $80 worth of groceries that would have cost us $35 at Aldi. When it had been an item here or there it didn’t seem like that much (though $5 here and there adds up) but seeing that $80 total when I know it’d be halved at Aldi was a hit in the gut.
But I feel entitled.
And it stared with food, but it slowly got bigger. I had scrimped so much on Valentine’s Day by not getting any decor, candy or gifts that I felt entitled to have the Easter that I wanted. So this weekend I bought decorations (mostly to supplement those the dogs had eaten this summer… apparently they were confused and thought that decorative eggs were edible and not ceramic or paper mache), and I got candy, etc. I feel entitled to celebrate the way I want to.
Then it got bigger. At the store I work at we are highly encouraged to shop. While you don’t have to wear their clothes (except if you were jeans they have to be their jeans which is fine because all I own are their jeans except two pairs from Gap I got this summer) it certainly helps when a customer sees you wearing an outfit they can find at the store. So when I first started I was regularly asked if I’ve used my 50% yet. (As associates our first purchase is 50% off and all others are 20% off). Then after one of our training sessions (which consisted of us being paired up and we had to dress each other) I wound up buying 2 of the outfits the girl dressed me in. For a total of $140 (after the 50% off). I later returned two items bringing the total down to $90. But then this weekend there was a special promotion were all associates had 45% off. My manager repeatedly asked if I had used it yet and actually let me shop and try on clothes “on the clock.” I bought two dresses for a total of $70. (Granted I’m wearing one of them today and LOVE it). Then on Sunday I bought a top for $25 (which technically my mom is going to reimburse me for so it doesn’t count). So, so far I’ve made exactly what I’ve spent.
But I felt like I should have those things. That it was such a great deal. And as it was super beautiful out on Sunday and I was driving home from work to grill I thought to myself how I wish I hadn’t returned the Coach sunglasses I bought last summer. Mine are 4 or 5 years old and I love them (but they’re ghetto at this point because I can’t look down/move sharply without them falling off because a piece is missing). They’ve paid for themselves over the years. So I feel entitled to getting a new pair this summer.
And I want a pool for our backyard (like one of those above ground ones). And I want to replace our umbrella that broke for our patio set. And well I’ll need new plants and seeds, etc to garden. And sod for the patchy parts of our yard. And well these things add up, but I feel like I deserve to have them. That I shouldn’t have to deny myself these things.
I know its all about mindset. And acknowledging that is the first step. But the H got a nice bonus at work and instead of using it for our credit cards like we’re using our tax return I want to keep it. I want to keep it to replace our windows (that are completely decaying from the difference in moisture out/inside and of course the fact that they’re ancient). I just want all of these things! I hate having to deny myself them.
This month (and last) has put no Chipotle December to shame. There has been lots of Chipotle, and McDonalds, and Jamba Juice, and Dominos and wherever else the H and I have desired to eat.
We make so much money (comparatively) how don’t we have the money for these things?
Ah yes, because our fixed expenses are just as high as our income.