Sunday, March 4, 2012

Reboot is now including SIMPLIFYING Life

Time for the early Sunday morning rant!

Has anyone actually thought about how much money you spend in a month? I hope it's constant knowledge in order to KEEP order in your personal household. 

Seriously.  This is not going to be one of those BUDGET BUDGET SAVE YOUR MONEY discussions.  I'm HARDLY the one to have that kind of talk.  I had a revelation about what the industries have been pushing us to believe we can't live without and how much money is spent on it daily, monthly, and yearly.  It's money that could go in our own pockets, into our savings, for our retirement, for our kids' futures, towards eliminating debt!  Yet we think it's reasonable and necessary to give it to someone else. challenged her readers to avoid spending for just the month of February and I noted joyful tweets of savings of up to $956.00! I was ecstatic FOR them!  Could that be done in YOUR life?

Let's get out a pen and paper....Yes, I said a pen and paper, not the computer or your Iphone.  It's necessary psychologically for you to actually write it down and see it and make it real.  Later you can review and make your own determination of how you want your money and your life to be spent.

Answer these questions as honestly as possible.  This means you may have to retrieve the actual bills, which are, hopefully, all in one place anyway, and reach deep into your subconcious to pull out the numbers.

How much do you spend per month on a cell phone?  More than one phone?  (write it down) 
Do you also have a house phone? How much is it and does it have unlimited calling? (write it down)
How many times per month do you have your hair styled?  Your childrens'? (write the cost down, plus tip!)
How many times per month do you have the mani/pedi done? How much does it cost you? (Plus tipping!)
How many times per month do you shop for clothing, accessories, etc.?  How much do you spend? (write it!)
How many times to you go to the grocery store each week? Average amount spent? (multiply x4 and write it down)
How many times do you eat out in a week? Average amount spent? (multiply x4 and write it down)

Are we being honest today? PAINFULLY honest?  Then let's continue.

How much do you spend to watch television? Satellite? Cable, TIVO, whatever? Pay per view films? (write it)
Do you have a car payment?  On more than one vehicle? (write it--now I've gotten into my sing-song voice)
Paying for the computer internet service/WIFI, etc to read this right now?  How much? (write it down)
Going to the movies a lot in a month?  Matinees or evenings? How much in a month?  (write it)
Making an addiction-run into the drug store to 'browse' or into the beauty supply store? (write it down)
Do you always have to be the first to have the lastest, greatest, fastest, smallest, biggest just advertised toy?

I'll stop here.  These are mostly just the things that amuse you, make you feel better about how you look to others, or to seem busy, or worse, actually MAKE you busier than you need to be!  And we wonder why we are always playing 'catch-up' with our finances?

Remember when someone called and we couldn't answer....they'd call again.  Move it up some years. Let's say they called and could leave a message.  We didn't feel the need to have any discussions in the car besides with the other person riding WITH us.  You called people BACK.  I understand a child's need these days to have a phone to communicate with parents.  I think it's great that it's available and would have saved me many gray hairs raising my daughter back in the day.  However, do they REALLY need to make the calls and texts/sexts that they do?  In my opinion, sorry kids, but the simplest, LEAST expensive prepaid plan would do for them.  Ten bucks and done!

There's is a reason you have a kitchen to cook in.     It's there to care for yourself or make family dinners instead of the garbage served by drive-thrus.  And if you saw the kitchens in most restaurants you'd triple the prayer you say before eating it!

I'm not trying to call anybody out here.  I want us all to think about where our hard-earned money is going.  Is it working for us or are we rewarding ourselves with 'stuff' and 'activities' that aren't necessarily necessary to feed some other need in us or out of boredom? 

This is coming from a not so smart decision to have a 'smart' phone.  I realized that I had access to Wonderful World of the World Wide Web through my husband's desktop, my laptop, through the WII system on the tv, and on my phone!  For what reason would I need THAT much access to games, movies and YouTube videos!  Do I REALLY need to advise everyone on Twitter and Facebook what I'm thinking at that exact moment?  Am I that full of myself? Hope not. I'm returning my cell to simply minutes again with text (only to keep in contact with my out-of-the-country kid in emergencies!).  It will save us hundreds this year!  Sprint's gonna HATE me!

I resolved to plan and shop ONLY once per week for groceries we need for me to make meals at home, including breakfasts and lunches.  It's been proven that we spend WAY over our budget (sorry, bad word!) when we are in the store 2, 3, or 4 times per week just to pick up this or that.  This or that ends up costing what a car payment might be!

And, Ladies, when did we stop knowing how to do our own nails and hair that we have to pay someone to do it regularly for us?  If your hands work, should be working on you!

And for everyone with more than one vehicle payment (plus insurance!), I ask myself this everytime I hear about Jay Leno's car many cars can you drive at a time?  A car was meant to get you from A to B safely.  That's all that's required.  I don't want a car OR phone to talk to me, guide me (they have maps for that), tell me things I can find out myself with a little effort, show me movies, make a call FOR me, or choose the restaurant I'll treat myself to that night!  When did we give up so much control of our own decision-making and autonomy to, well, machines?  Think on that one, John Connor.

OK...done with the Sunday morning rant and ready to head to Mass to hang out with Somebody I love and can trust and is showing me the WAY to live in this complicated world without it being so complicated of a life.  Sigh.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, All, and have a blessed and enlightened week!

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