The Importance of Splurging

Whether you have a lot of money or a little money, you still have to decide how to use it, and you still have to have a budget to allow for both necessities and extras. Often when things look bleak, we can get very down on ourselves because it seems like all the money is going to bills, and none of it is spent on the things that we’d like to do or have.

If you are in a situation where money is something to keep you alive rather than something you enjoy, you probably think it doesn’t make any sense to go out and spend a pile of cash that you don’t really have. And that’s true, you do have to be prudent when times are tough… but you also need to learn to splurge a little sometimes, even when you think you can’t.

You don’t have to spend a lot to indulge yourself, and sometimes you don’t have to spend anything at all. Something as simple as a take-out meal or a going to the zoo can really brighten your day, and won’t break the bank. Likewise, you can rent a couple of movies and invite your friends over, and have everyone bring something to help spread the cost.

The psychological benefits of allowing yourself to enjoy some of your money can not only have immediate results, but can help to improve your overall situation over time. It is difficult to stay motivated about making money when all of it goes to necessities. This in turn can affect your attitude about work, and the quality of the work you do. Over time, people will notice these changes in your productivity and demeanor, and if you’re not careful you could find yourself out of a job, which is hardly going to help matters. Of course, you can always fake your enthusiasm at work until the rough patch passes, but people tend to see through that, and in any case it wouldn’t be necessary if you really did have something to be enthusiastic about, which is something you can change right now if you choose to.

If you allow yourself just a small amount of income to spend on wonderful, enjoyable things, the difference it can make in your mental well-being is astonishing. You’ll be out a tiny amount of money, but in return you might have some nice new trinkets for your home, a fun night out with your friends, or maybe a DVD or CD you will be able to enjoy again and again. Chances are, you really won’t miss that amount of money, and the amount of enjoyment it can bring you is well worth fitting it into your budget. Feeling like we can have fun with some of our money sometimes is a key factor in how we feel about having to go out and work so hard to earn it.

It may seem counterintuitive, especially during these times when many of us are struggling within the waning economy, to start going out and spending money when it’s so difficult to make ends meet. But if you force yourself to do a few small things to splurge on, not only can you improve the quality of your life and start having good times again, but you are contributing to the economy, also, which helps everyone in the long run. Learning to splurge can be difficult, but it can also be difficult to put the brakes on once you start, so use caution and common sense, and go out and have a little fun.

Borrowed from Totally Her

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2 responses to “The Importance of Splurging

  1. I agree that having little things to look forward to make a huge difference on the happiness scale!

  2. This is smart and you’re right; it doesn’t have to be huge to have a psychological boost. Some of the splurges I really enjoy are: fancy chocolate (I buy Valrhona dark chocolate at Trader Joe’s; it’s more than Hershey’s but cheaper at TJs and feels SO fancy and indulgent. Plus they say now with all the antioxidants & catechins etc etc it ‘s super healthy and just has to be better than the equivalent of Oreos or whatever.)

    I usually drink tea in the AMs at home but some days I go to Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf and sit with a book or magazine (like on a weekend if my hub is home w/kids) and it’s like a $2 sanity break. It feels wrong to spend $2 on tea when I can buy an entire box of tea bags for that amount, but it’s such a lovely indulgence.

    My other indulgence/luxury is that if anyone ever gives me a gift card or gift certificate, or if a relative gives me cash as a present, I totally use it luxuriously. It can be tempting to use it on necessities but instead I want to stick with the spirit of the gift. My mom (bless her!) gave me money for Mother’s Day and said, “Go have a mani/pedi.” I was tempted to just deposit it into my regular account but I had a girls’ night opportunity coming up so instead I had a spa pedicure with friends. It was way worth it.

    These little indulgences are small in the grand scheme of things but make a big difference to keep me plugging away at budgeting.

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