No new clothes. No eating out – buy basic, healthy food and last the next month on that. Always bring a lunch to work. Don’t take the bus unless it’s unbearable to walk. Find fun for free.
Those are commands I will try to drill in my head all month. It’s been a roller coaster, cost-wise, over the past little while. It’s not stopping now, either; part of the need to pump up the frugality is that I have so much else to spend money on, and so much I already have spent on.
Let me reword that – I have other things that I have spent so much money on. These are things that are supposed to be beneficial in the long run, to improve my income potential, but for me to take them when I’m not earning as much as I could/should be seems like a cruel short-term pain. I know the short-term pain is relative and partially self-inflicted, but as I have only had reasonable amounts of cash to spend as I pleased for a few months now it’s a bigger blow to have it temporarily taken away yet again.
I will be eating in all month. I will have to spend my free time reading books I already have, and writing things myself to contribute something to, if not the outside world, at least my own sanity and sense of value. I have a few creative projects to keep me busy and a few sneaky ways of cost-cutting for things that can’t be avoided. This pocket-gouging will haunt me for a few months now, but there’s so much up in the air that at least I know something will change, and I can’t see it being that much for the worse.
At least, unlike countries of the European Union, my austerity plan will only affect me. I don’t have a personal economy in recession (unless some theorist pops his head out of nowhere and pushes microeconomics to the individual level to make me feel like shit for not consuuuuuuming), and I can foresee economic growth in the long run.
The most promising part of the payoff of these actions is that I won’t be over-thought and over-talked in the public sphere because nobody cares about me. Others won’t be trembling in uncertainty and guarantee a further fall just because cable television has an agenda.