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Frugal living has many benefits that can have positive long-term effects on your financial and lifestyle goals.
As you get older, you may notice that certain aspects of your life don’t get easier when more money is made.
In fact, with the added work output, there is additional stress, worry, and expectation.
This leads to less enjoyment in terms of activities that used to bring you joy.
What if there was a way to live more simply, with less stuff to your name?
Wouldn’t that be nice?
And no, it’s not necessarily taking a minimalistic approach, it’s frugal living – where less is more!
Perhaps, you’re seeking to gain insight on the game-changing benefits of what frugal living can provide you.
Along with outlining 5 benefits of frugal living, I will give you some ideas to help you on your path to a more frugal life.
5 Frugal Living Benefits: Quality Of Life Game Changers
#1 – More sustainable lifestyle.
Imagine you are renting a large room to store your life’s possessions and it has a recurring cost of $1,000.
You later learn that you can trade it for a somewhat smaller room with a reduced cost of $700.
Do you make the trade?
This is the concept of frugal living: trading what can be costly and unnecessary for what is practical.
When you trim out the excesses, you learn what is truly important to you.
More importantly, you learn what you actually don’t need.
What else occurs?
This results in a streamlined living space with less junk, fewer distractions, and a higher concentration of things you truly enjoy.
Encouraged by this success, you soon expand it to other areas such as food and health.
This can mean purchasing goods with an eye for health benefits or even growing a partial food supply.
In the grand scheme of things, you are actually changing your lifestyle to be more sustainable than it was.
Your paycheck stretches further, leading to more savings and investments. You later realize that you are becoming accustomed to the new lifestyle and have no plans of reverting back.
Suddenly, you start seeing the possibilities of retiring on-time or even earlier than expected, all because your living expenses have permanently reduced.
This snowball effect is the whole purpose of improving the sustainability of your lifestyle!
It’s not even as hard to start as you might think.
Have you ever gone without something, later realizing that it wasn’t actually that hard to let go?
For me, I used to spend tons of unproductive time vegging out in front of the TV. At night when I returned home from work and on most weekends as a way to decompress – watching TV was always an activity high up on my list.
It took 10 years to get rid of the tether that had been bound so tightly to me – figuratively speaking of course.
This change occurred because my circumstances changed.
You would think that although I had placed TV as one of my main go-to’s, it would be difficult to get rid of the chain.
Surprisingly, it wasn’t.
When you opt to cut back, you will be surprised at how quickly living with less becomes a lifestyle.
Let’s move into more of a look at what living a frugal life “affords” you…
- Real-life Savings – Bye Bye Cable
- Frugal Living: 14 Practical Tips To Save Money
- 10 Life-Changing Money, Health, And Relationship Habits
#2 – Less clutter and unnecessary items.
Frugal living is all about less is more.
-Purchasing goods that are of value to the individual.
-Rarely participating in consumerism.
-Intentional with purchases.
This leads to fewer items that end up cluttering the household and making it hard to concentrate.
Too. Much. Stuff.
Don’t get me wrong…
Retail therapy is a real thing and does help for a short time, but the unnecessary buying cycle is unhealthy for the mind and the budget.
There was a time in my life that I used retail therapy to get through a difficult time. I ended up with a closet full of wool, silk, and poly fashions – more than I could ever possibly wear. This lasted a short time, but in a way, I’m glad I was able to experience this chapter because it taught me that I wasn’t missing out.
What about you? Do you have an array of items in your possession that need a new home?
Consider parting with the items and stashing the money in savings.
You may be thinking, well, who’s gonna want this and that…and this and that…
There may be a market for it either in your local community in which case a garage sale is calling or online where you can get more eyes on the items you are seeking to sell.
Related article: Selling Your Goods Online For Extra Money and Intro to Poshmark
#3 – Enhanced appreciation (for the simpler things).
As you learn to be happier with less, your appreciation of your current situation increases. You are more apt to do more things that involve spending less.
Do you find yourself spending just to spend?
Maybe you find that the activities are worth it to you. Great, if it enhances your quality of life – but what if it’s not? What if those activities are hindering it?
It may be time to open up the world of possibilities when it comes to free or minimal spend activities.
Here is a small collection of ideas to get you started.
Who doesn’t love a good book?
My last read was “The Woman in Cabin 10” by Ruth Ware. I’ll give it a 7 out of 10 – which is pretty good.
I noticed on Insta that Reese Witherspoon was reading it, so I had to check it out!
Did you know she has a book club Insta account you can follow?
Here it is:
(@reesesbookclubxhellosunshine) – yw!
Here are some of the selections I have on hold. Have you read these books?
- You Are A Badass – How To Stop Doubting Your Greatness And Start Living An Awesome Life – by Jen Sincero
- The Woman In The Window – by A. J. Finn – rave reviews from top authors
- The Last Mrs. Parrish – by Liv Constantine – a recommendation from Reese W. bookclub
Looking to find a book of your own? Try using Overdrive. You can gain access to audiobooks, ebooks, and stream video all through your local library. Available 24/7 & no late fees. It’s an amazing tool!
Trekking along trails is not for everyone. I’m pretty accident-prone so it can get kinda dicey whenever I am on the trails, but I have managed most of the time. Heh.
Hiking is a real calorie torcher that can improve your sleep quality and mood. If you live in a beautiful area that has abundant trails and parks this is a must-do!
Related article: Save Money: 30+ Ideas To Trade Spending For Productivity
What is more awesome than growing your own fruits and veggies? I know, I know. Here’s a photo I’m sharing of the Meyer lemon I grew here in the Southwest! It took a bit to get them started, but with two growing trees, they should come more plentiful in the coming seasons.
The easiest produce items to grow would be herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, chili peppers, spinach. For more gardening tips, visit The Farmer’s Almanac.
Eating is a prerequisite!
If you have to eat anyway, why not make it an adventure?
Think about your favorite dish that you get prepared elsewhere. See if you can find a highly rated version through search. Then, buy the ingredients to make a home-cooked meal. Voila!
On the topic of cooking…
#4 – Healthful eating.
Mindfully spending on the goods that will feed your body and soul benefits you in the long-term, likely in the form of fewer ailments and sicknesses.
This begins with making smarter decisions when it comes to selecting your groceries with an eye for maintaining your health. (If it suits your lifestyle, growing some of your own produce serves this purpose.)
Frugal living and eating mean more home-cooked meals and fewer trips out to buy prepared food.
Naturally, when food is cooked at home, you control what goes into each dish.
Sure, this isn’t definitive because you CAN cook “bad” meals at home – but there’s a higher likelihood it’s going to be healthier if you cook food yourself. In my case, this is very true.
Also, it is a known fact that buying on the outskirts of the grocery store is the best way to get the healthy foods that lead to less of an impact on the wallet.
Of course, let’s be serious, who wants to gnaw on Kale? Not me, but into the morning smoothies it goes, at $2.50 a bunch, it’s worth its weight in health benefits.
• DISCOVER •
If you are seeking to discover new healthy foods, try Thrive Market. It’s my latest obsession! Thrive Market is making a huge impact in making healthy goods accessible at wholesale prices.
Better yet, with every sign-up, Thrive will sponsor a low-income family for their own year-long subscription so they have access to healthy eating. Awesome!
I will write a more in-depth article about Thrive Market + Whole Foods, so stay tuned!
Related article: Budget-Friendly Meals For Everyone
#5 – Retirement becomes a (BIG) possibility.
Do you want to retire someday? Early, on-time, late – eventually, right?
There is a high likelihood that if you work to reduce your spending now, the habit will persist in retirement.
This means you can retire with a lower nest egg than you originally intended. It could result in shaving a few years off your retirement timeline.
Using “The Multiply By 25 rule”, let’s say you plan on spending $60k/year in retirement. Using this rule, you would need a nest egg of $1.5M to sustain your withdrawals.
This simply takes $60k by 25 to get to the $1.5M.
The “Multiply By 25 rule” is simply a way to estimate the necessary nest egg by taking desired annual income by 25. It assumes a real rate of return of 4%, considering inflation. For a more conservative approach use “33” as your factor, instead of “25”.
Let’s make a minor change here and reduce the yearly expenses from $60k to $50k.
The revised nest egg would be $1.25M ($50k by 25).
That’s a difference of $250k ($1.5M – $1.25M)!
The $10k reduction in spending per year effectively shaves off 5 years of expenses that would have otherwise needed to be covered.
5 fewer years of punching the clock.
If you have plans on retiring, consider this rule of thumb. Lowering your expenses will increase the chances you are able to retire earlier (or even at all).
That being said, it is always at the forefront of my mind that if I want to retire someday, I will have to forgo certain splurges in order to get there.
Don’t feel bad for me though. I have everything I need. It’s all perspective!
More Lovely Benefits
I wanted to highlight some of the benefits that come to mind from my own experiences, but there are SO MANY. Here are some more that you can review to see if you can relate (or want that benefit)!
♦ Increased level of financial security – this is in line with saving and investing more to someday be able to retire. Not only that, you open yourself up to being ready for life’s curveballs. Aka – emergencies, health concerns, and/or job loss.
♦ Fewer spousal fights about money if both people are on the same “money page”.
♦ Less anxiety and worry about making ends meet – this translates to better sleep, confidence, and more relaxed life.
♦ More creativity and flexibility in how you live your life.
The Bottom Line
What do you think? Are the benefits worth it?
Let’s quickly review the 5 benefits of frugal living that can have long-lasting effects on your life.
#1 – When you live with less, you become accustomed to it, and it becomes a lifestyle that is sustainable.
#2 – Having less clutter and unnecessary items is a byproduct of emphasizing spending on items that provide the most value.
#3 – Improving your quality of life and appreciation of the smaller aspects by changing the focus from spending accumulation to spending time on experiences.
#4 – A healthful lifestyle is inherited by having more focus on home-cooked meals.
#5 – Retirement may be on the horizon given that measures are taken to minimize expenses and maximize savings and investments.
As a final thought, I want to stress that a frugal lifestyle does not mean you need to eliminate all frivolous spending or large purchases.
It’s quite the contrary, it means being more intentional with your purchases.
It is a choice that only you can make for yourself.
Read more about my mission HERE.
Ways to stretch your money further + earn extra cash:
Ebates – receive $10 when you spend $25 (online/in-store shopping)
Ibotta – receive $10 as a welcome gift (grocery in-store shopping)
Swagbucks – receive $5 as a welcome gift (get paid for everyday things you do online)
Visit my resources page for more information on each service and to view other offers!
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What benefits have you found to be a byproduct of frugal living? Share it in the comments below!