The last few weeks have been tough. You know the type. It seems like everything that could go wrong, did. I work hard on stress relief. I lean toward high anxiety and stress is always a low hum in my life, even in the best of times. Lately, well, it’s been crazy. Rather than go for a run or do yoga, I have either crawled into bed with a glass of wine and a box of chocolates and binge watched Netflix or binge shopped on Amazon. Ugh. I knew things were bad when a box showed up at the door and I had no clue what was inside. This week, I’m working to get it under control. When I realize I’m overwhelmed and likely to be stupid, I stick by three standby responses:
1) Delay. If I deny, I fail instantly. If I think I’ll NEVER get something, I’ll cave immediately. Instead, I tell myself that I can order or eat whatever I want…if I can remember exactly what it was when I get home. Chances are very high that a) I’ll forget or b) decide it wasn’t what I wanted anyway.
2) Distract. Most of my bad actions are because I’m bored or tired and the stress is felt more deeply. I’ve been going for a walk at lunch daily to give myself a midday boost. It also keeps my away from my computer…and Amazon. I’ve also been telling myself that I can eat as much chocolate as I want if I eat a whole food first (like an orange, apple, bell pepper, etc.). When I eat something healthy first, I’m usually pretty good at resisting an entire bag of chocolate. Oh trust me, I definitely EAT THE CHOCOLATE, I’m not a robot. But I eat less if I distract myself first.
3) Forgive. Yup. There are some days I spend too much money. Rather than think I’m terrible with my budget and I might as well give up forever, I forgive myself and MOVE ON. It’s so easy to overspend then continue in that trend because you’ve already made a mess but DON’T.
What are your tips for preventing overspending when stressed? Freeze your debit cards? Make money difficult to get? Because these days, I’m open to suggestions!
Beks is a full-time government employee who enjoys blogging late into the night after her four kids have gone to sleep. She’s been married to Chris, her college sweetheart, for 15 years. In 2017, after 3 long years working the Dave Ramsey Baby Steps, they paid off more than $70K and became debt free. When she’s not working or blogging, she’s exploring the great outdoors.