About Me

I recently started couponing on January 1, 2011 as a New Year's Resolution. I had never really couponed before because it always seemed time consuming- "how could a 25 cent coupon REALLY save you money?" I thought. Plus, I have never really stuck to a New Year's Resolution. So this year I decided to make a change- I would stick to both! And I have. So far I have cut our weekly grocery budget 70%! We used to spend $150 a week on little things that we could not even make a meal out of AND then we would eat out on top of that! Thousands wasted over a year. Now I spend on average $58 a week on groceries and personal items (toilet paper, body wash) AND I stock up on many of these items so I won't need them again for another 6-12 months! These number keeps going down as we begin to live off our stockpile. If you follow my blog, I will teach you some of the ways this newbie couponer has saved lots of money!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Everyone Wants to be Rich, Just Like Everyone Wants to be Skinny: Why Saving Requires a Lifestyle Change



Everyone wants to be rich just like everyone wants to be skinny. Being healthy requires sacrifice- you need to eat well balanced nutrition meals and work out. It is simple: calories in, calories out. If your body requires 1,500 calories and you eat 3,000 calories regularly, then you will gain 1-2 lbs a week. The same goes for money. If your monthly budget is $3,000 and yet you only take home $2,000, you are going into debt $1,000 a month. Most American's are fat and in debt. It's all about choices. 

Couponing to me does not just involve cutting coupons out of the Sunday paper. Couponing is actively trying to pinch every penny and make every dollar work for you. "Couponing" the way I use it can include everything from cutting coupons, trading coupons, using sites like Groupon/Living Social for entertainment, shopping on discount days (Wed for senior citizens or Penny Item day at Publix), eating at restaurants when they have reduced specials on certain days, going to matinee movies, growing a garden, freezing/canning food and much more. 

It seems overwhelming at first; no one wants to live their life around a coupon or a deal. But if you want to be healthy and rich, you have to sacrifice. Eventually that sacrifice becomes a lifestyle change. Giving up fried chicken is a huge sacrifice for some people, but after they have lost weight, sleep better and feel better overall, the sacrifice was worth it. Eventually, the person does not even think about fried chicken anymore and their food choices become a part of their life. That is how couponing has become for me.

Take this weekend for example. I used a plethora of coupons that required hardly any effort on my part:

Saturday:

6am: Went to Walmart to get Gain dryer sheets, air fresheners and seeds for my garden. Used coupons on Gain and air fresheners from newspaper.
12pm: Went to JCPenny to get some clothes for work. Used $10 off $25 purchase coupon from online printable coupon.
1pm: Went to Michael's to get a frame for my certificate. Used 40% off coupon from newspaper.
6pm: Went to dinner with our friends to celebrate a birthday at Bucca Di Beppo. Used $10 off $20 purchase from newspaper.
9pm: Went to CVS to get Pledge deal early. Used coupons from newspaper.

Sunday:

12pm: Went to CVS for Axe and Bic deal. Used coupons from newspaper. Note: normally I would not have gone to CVS again, but I needed to pick up a prescription so I did this deal while I was there.
12:30pm: Went to Kroger to get a sweet potatoe for lunch side and get hand soap. Used coupons from newspaper on handsoap.  Note: normally I would not have gone to Kroger on a Sunday but I needed a sweet potatoe and had the new Softsoap coupons from this mornings newspaper.
3pm: My friend, ML, came over to get (4) of my $2 off diapers coupons. Gotta share the couponing love with fellow couponers- I don't have any kiddos, so why do I need diaper Q's? But $8 in savings can sure help her and her awesome family. Check out MLs fun blog and see what motivates her to coupon!
4pm: Went to movies with husband to see "Limitless." Used Living Social coupon where we paid $9 for two movie tickets. 

My whole weekend did not "revolve" around coupons, I made coupons revolve around my weekend. We made these dinner plans weeks ago, I just saved the coupon. I have been wanting to go to JCPenny, I just waited for a great sale/coupon. I got my certificate in the mail Thursday, so Sat I planned on getting a frame regardless. I needed  hand soap and Pledge wood cleaner since we were out, so I used my coupons. To someone new to couponing, it may seem like this required a lot of planning- it truly did not. I lived my weekend like I had planned and just added coupons to the weekend to save lots of money.

At first, Strategic Shopping will require time. You will have to think about each coupon, when to use it, how to use it, etc. Eventually it just becomes natural. If you want to lose 10 lbs. you can't expect to lose it in a week; it may take 2-3 months. The same goes for couponing. You will want to save 80% in 1 week; it will take 2-3 months until you learn the ropes and build up a coupon inventory. If you stick with couponing, it will pay off. It just requires a lifestyle change. It is up to you how dramatic of a lifestyle change you want or need to make. If you want to lose 5lbs, then casually go at dieting; if you want to lose 20 lbs, you are going to have to make a change. Same goes for couponing. If you want to save $5 here or there, go for it. But if you want to save $100 a week and 60-80%, you will have to make a change. Change your mindset. Change your behavior. Change your outlook. 

Happy couponing!








4 comments:

  1. You forgot one....
    Sunday 3:30 friend comes by so you could give her diaper coupons!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I did, ML!! I will have to add it. :)

    ReplyDelete