Much like the trees shed their leaves this time of year, it may be time for individuals to do some shedding as well — of the financial nature. Autumn is the perfect time to follow the trees’ lead and strip ourselves of those unnecessary expenses we’ve piled up during summer.
And, with this autumn season under the pressure of a pandemic, we could all afford to save a little money. But where to start?
Instead of falling victim to the pre-holiday consumerism of the autumn season, get back to basics by shedding these expenses.
We’re looking at you, pumpkin spice latté. All jokes aside, it’s certainly okay to treat yourself to some of the many delightful treats this season has to offer. However, don’t let the warm and cozy sentiments distract you from the reality of this autumnal industrial complex.
It’s no secret that the pumpkin spice craze, pioneered by Starbucks, has opened up a $600 million market across countless brands. In fact, this concept has even come to be known as the “Pumpkin Spice Economy.”
So, this season, rather than giving into the novelties of pumpkin-this and cinnamon-that, take matters into your own hands. Avoid the sweater craze if you already have a closet-full and research some DIY recipes of your own.
‘Tis the season for flash promotions and indulgent email marketing. When it comes to e-commerce, autumn takes the cake for record-high sales. Couple that with the pandemic and we’re really in for a hectic retail season.
Between Halloween, Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and the general pre-holiday craze, brands of all kinds are itching to get inside your wallet.
This year, make a list of what you need at the start of the season and stick to it. Naturally, you’ll want to leave some wiggle room for gift-giving when the time arises. Still, when it comes to individual purchases, it’s best to keep to practical items.
If you still feel the itch to shop, but can’t do so without getting carried away, consider signing up for an affordable subscription box.
Not only do subscription boxes charge a nominal monthly fee for a new, surprise shipment each month (did someone say “Christmas all year long”?), but it helps you get an eye on potential holiday gifts for those you love.
Bye-Bye Bad-Day Spending
Naturally, the shift in weather can affect our moods in a way that sometimes causes us to seek retail therapy. But this season, it’s better to resist those impulse purchases.
Try to dedicate your down days to new experiences instead of new purchases. Sign up for a low-cost meditation app. Many have enormous libraries of therapeutic practices to choose from, allowing it to maintain a sense of novelty while still benefiting your mental health (and not harming your savings).
Ask yourself this as well: Will spending out of sadness just lead to spending guilt? If the answer is yes, you’re better off without. Oftentimes, emotional spending only deepens our woes because we feel regret for spending our money on an in-the-moment want.
Fall-ing for Autumn
There’s no doubt that autumn can be somewhat of an intoxicating season. The warm vibes can boost our mood while the shifting weather can dampen it. Those kinds of highs and lows are what spur on excessive spending the most.
Yet, it’s also a season for slowing down from the excitement of summer and settling into a cozier time of year. So, use that to your advantage. Take time this autumn to reflect on your financial well-being and how to maintain or enhance it.
Think of those unnecessary expenses as the leave you’ve shed, and your new spending habits as the leaves you nurture in their place.