We can’t be good all the time. Sometimes, it makes sense to splurge a little.
While you don’t want to splurge constantly, it can be beneficial to you to splurge every now and then.
What is a Splurge?
There are many different ways to look at a splurge. In general, though, a splurge is something somewhat unexpected that you are willing to pay extra for. A splurge is something that you choose to upgrade. Whether you decide to fly first class this time, or whether you decide to buy a loved book, rather than check it out of the library. Most of the time, splurges are completely unnecessary. They aren’t things that you require for survival. They are usually unneeded — but fun.
Take a Break from Pinching Pennies
For some, it becomes tedious to constantly be pinching pennies. At times, a break from frugality is just what is needed to stay on track.
Set aside some fun money regularly. This is money that can be used on something spontaneous. While you might be planning to make sure that the money is available to you, you can use it on any expense you want — including (and perhaps especially) on something frivolous.
Even if you use a zero-based budget you can take a break from the planning for a splurge. Simply label one of your categories “splurge” and then spend the money on something surprising. It doesn’t have to be a large splurge, either.
Even splurging on something small and simple like a $5 latte, or a $30 manicure can be refreshing. These occasional splurges can keep you from becoming discouraged with frugality. A splurge every now and then, reminding you that you can be spontaneous with your money, can be just what is needed to keep you on track the rest of the time.
Splurge on Something You Enjoy
While your splurge doesn’t have to be on something you need, it should be on something you enjoy. Think about what you like to do, but that you don’t get to do very often. That might be just the thing to splurge on.
A splurge should be something out of the ordinary, that you wouldn’t normally spend money on. Whether it’s dessert at a restaurant, or a new book, pick something that enhances your quality of life, while being fun. As long as you can afford the splurge, there’s nothing wrong with enjoying it. In fact, I think you should do your best to enjoy some of your money.
I like to splurge on experiences. When I’m traveling, I’ll spend extra to stay at a nice hotel. I like to buy small souvenirs (usually fridge magnets), so it doesn’t bother me that they’re over-priced. I also enjoy splurging a little when I find something I think my husband will enjoy. It’s fun to see the look on his face when he opens the present. These experiences stick with me, and serve as reminders of what’s most important to me.
Don’t Go Into Debt for a Splurge
More on Fun and Savings
While it can be fun to splurge, remember that you don’t want to go in debt over it. Your splurges should git within your spending plan. You should have the money for a splurge before you go out and spend. And if you know you are going to go big on something (like a vacation), make sure that you save up for it.
It might seem counter-intuitive to save up for something that’s supposed to be spontaneous, but it’s vital that you be able to afford your splurges without going into debt. That way, you can avoid the interest that can lead to taking years to pay off your debt.
Remember, too, that your splurge can’t become a regular habit. It’s one thing to splurge on something small every so often; it’s quite another thing when a luxury splurge somehow morphs into a “need.”
As you enjoy your splurges, it’s important to make sure that your splurges stay just that — occasional fun purchases.
When you splurge, what are you most likely to splurge on?
Miranda is freelance journalist. She specializes in topics related to money, especially personal finance, small business, and investing. You can read more of my writing at Planting Money Seeds.