I recently read an article by Jeff Yeager of The Green Cheapskate blog suggesting to stop spending money for one week. I was surprised that Americans are only five percent of the world’s population, but yet consume thirty percent of the world’s resources. That number shocked me actually. I figured with the expansion of so many countries, like China, Americans consumption of goods would have been less than thirty percent. You can start to see the big concerns the world has when the United States has some fiscal issues.
While it’s extremely important to pay yourself first, pay off debt and save for the future, I still think it’s important to spend some as I expressed in my ‘Is Now The Right Time To Be Frugal?‘ post. But all that said, Jeff does have a great underlying point. We have so much stuff, we need to make a conscience effort to use what we buy and not waste anything.
Do you have clothes in your closet that you never wear? Sell them on eBay, garage sale or donate them to Goodwill.
Tired of always going to the grocery store? Open up your pantry and use what you have before you make your next shopping trip. It might also be a good time to donate some of those non-perishable goods to local food banks (who desperately need items more than ever).
While not spending money for week sounds impossible, it’s a nice goal to have. Unfortunately, it will most likely just postpone the inevitable and the money that was saved will be spent later anyways. Maybe I’m just being cynical. The ultimate challenge would be to parlay the savings to make an extra payment on debt.
Are you up to the challenge?