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Stop Comparing!

This might sound like the opposite of sound frugal shopping advice, but stay with me.

Apples and Oranges

Sometimes we save money by finding a way to make something ourselves that we might otherwise purchase at a store. This can backfire, though, if in your mind you are always trying to duplicate and then compare the two products.

For example, you might decide to save money by making your own large coffee at home, rather than paying $3.00 to $5.00 for a cup of coffee at the local coffee shop. Perhaps you have a favorite flavor or style at the coffee shop and no matter how hard you've tried, you just can't duplicate the flavor. Now is the time to stop comparing. Create your own delicious coffee (or even a tea or other beverage) that you really enjoy. Be creative. Search for good coffee recipes and be willing to experiment. Stop trying to exactly duplicate the coffee shop recipe. Save the coffee shop coffee as a special treat . Don't allow your own brewed coffee to be a poor substitute. It's not a Fat Dollar savings if you feel deprived and like you are having "second best."

This money saving tips works for nearly everything that you choose to change or let go. For example, I like to save money by refrigerating leftover oatmeal and then reheating it as a snack or for eating the next morning for breakfast (it can even be used in baking, such as in muffins, but that is for another money saving article). When I reheat the oatmeal, I stir in milk or cream to add the needed moisture for reheating. This makes the resulting oatmeal richer and creamier than the original. Instead of feeling resentful that my "frugal" oatmeal is not the same in texture and taste as the original, I honor the difference. I look forward to the change.

You may have fun trying to duplicate something, such as experimenting with a recipe from your favorite restaurant. As long as it is fun and interesting, keep experimenting. But if you find that you are feeling a sense of loss or having second-best, then instead of trying to duplicate something, strive to make the new item or experience even better. Sometimes this is done by completely leaving behind the old and embracing something new and different.

Think of it another way: Does it ever really work when you are constantly comparing your current husband/boyfriend to a former one? When you do that, you are the one who loses. You don't really appreciate the man you are with, because you are always finding ways in which he does or does not meet the characteristics and habits of the former one. What a sad way to miss out on the rich and deep experience of growing closer to and enjoying all the unique aspects of a person in your life. How would you feel if you knew that everything you did was compared to an old girlfriend and would be "good enough" only if it met or exceeded her ways? You'd feel pretty devalued, right? Now, how would you feel if your man was totally enchanted by, interested in, and attracted to that whole mixture of things that make you totally you? So enchanted that he hardly remembered that he'd ever had another woman? Big difference.

Now transfer that thought to all your new experiences .... and think of them as new experiences instead of "substitutes" or "doing without."

Learning to let go of wanting exact duplicates and celebrating and learning to love new items, foods, and experiences will allow you to greatly expand your joy in living a frugal life. Now that's The Fat Dollar way.


Article by Patti Tokar Canton

Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net and rakratchada torsap



Your Money or Your Life  by Joe Dominguez and Vickie Robin

9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence.

Are you working to make a living or working to make a life? Change the way you treat money and think about money.   Revolutionary, inspiring and empowering nine-step program for transforming your relationship with money and achieving financial independence. This book is a classic and has changed many lives and Amazon readers give it a 4+ star rating (out of 5)!

Tightwad GazetteTHE COMPLETE TIGHTWAD GAZETTE by Amy Dacyczyn  

....This is one of my favorite books.

Although a little quirky sometimes, and sometimes a little extreme, this book has many great ideas for spending less on low priority stuff so you'll have more money to spend on high priority stuff (like college, or a house!) The author, Amy Dacyczyn lived her dream of having a large farm house and many happy kids all while working from home and learning how to be creative and frugal. Amy's background in graphic design makes her approach to saving money simply delightful. The best part for me was the wonderful tone of family love that weaves throughout the book.  Very creative and fun book and VERY THICK! You will definitely get your money's worth in simple living tips and money saving tips with this book.



THE COMPLETE IDIOTS GUIDE TO BEING A CHEAPSKATE     by Mark W Miller.  Help with saving money on travel, gifts, home items and more in the traditional "complete idiot's guide" format.  


Books are offered in association with Amazon



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