Personally, I don't think we're in much of a recession. If we truly were in a recession, we would be seeing much fewer restaurant diners and more beans and cornbread family meals at home...clothing stores and malls would be closer to shutting down because their customers would decrease...less items like flat screen TV’s and blu-ray players, digital cameras would be bought. We haven't really had any reduced economic activity - therefore, we aren't in a recession. However, for those who want to believe we are, here are some tips to easing their woes.
1. Stop Spending so Much
Simple as that. We complain we haven't any money when the charity knocks at the door or when we're applying for food stamps, and yet, somehow, we have the money to purchase a new blackberry or iPhone. Honestly, I've sat and watched people apply for food stamps as they talked on their blackberry! Something sounds a bit off with that, doesn't it? Just think of how many meals you could have bought with the money you paid for your blackberry.
2. Find Necessities
Weigh your options. Which is more important, your house payment or that new camera you're wanting? We don't need all the luxuries of life when we can't afford the basics of life. When you go to the grocery, go in and come out with only your necessities.
3. Cut down
Are there any parts of your phone bill your can cut out to cut down on the cost? Take the time to go through your bill, and if you're not using a part of your plan, toss it. You're throwing money away. Other places you can do this is with your television programs - are you paying for channels you're not watching?
4. Go Thrifty
There is nothing wrong or condescending with going to a second-hand shop for clothes and shoes. Who cares if someone else has worn them? They're still good, fashionable and beautiful. Why pay $20 or $30 for an outfit you can pay $5 or $6 for second-hand? Yard sales are good shopping locations as well!
5. Yard Sale
Speaking of yard sales, it's a great idea to sell the items lying around your home that you're not using any more. You can make some side cash, and help some other thrifty shopper find what they need. And now is the perfect time of year to be getting ready to have one! So what are you waiting for?
6. Watch Your Food Choices
It isn't necessary to eat out all the time or to have steak all the time at home. Stick to good ol' fashioned beans and cornbread, or ham, mashed potatoes, gravy and green beans. You can cut your food spending by more than a half by accepting less "fancy" meals to eat.
7. Watch Vacation
Who needs more than one vacation a year? Two at most! Some people get themselves in the most trouble by taking too much relaxation time. And even when you do have time off for vacation, you don't necessarily have to go somewhere and spend lots of money to have fun. Plan fun things to do right around your home.
8. Start a Budget
I understand we're human and we need some pleasurable indulgences every now and then. Spending money on some fun things for the family is ok once in a while. But what should really be done is set up a budget. Determine your monthly income, subtract food, shelter, other bills, other necessities, and put the rest in a "savings" area. Every few months, take the money you've saved and spend on something fun. See? That's not so bad!
I don't mean to come across as mean and rude, but this is a subject I feel passionate about. One thing that makes me truly upset is to talk to someone who is indulging in all the pleasures of life while complaining about not having any money. It's all in how you manage your money, and where you spend it - simple as that. So what are you doing to ease your recession?
Top Photo Credit: RickM2007