At the start of our frugal journey I got a copy of this book out of the library and was not very impressed by it. It felt very American and fairly technical when what I wanted was information on how to cut the grocery bill and cook cheap meals ! For those things, the earlier two books in this series were much better, also The Tightwad Gazette which was mentioned in Comments last week.
However, over the last couple of years, when we have attempted to get really serious about saving so we can spend our lives as we wish, I got the book out of the library again and this time decided to buy a copy and put it on the shelf for reference.
This book is all about the motivation to be frugal and thrifty and the key point is that when you spend money you are trading life energy for the item you are buying. So, for instance, if you buy a piece of clothing which costs the equivalent of 2 hours wages, are you really willing to trade 2 hours of your life for that piece of clothing or would you rather have the 2 hours ? I suppose because I am getting older and the realisation that they are only a fixed number of hours left might have made more receptive to the message than I was a few years ago !
The idea of thinking about how many hours of your life would you trade for a piece of material has really helped me to curb impulse spending. Miss Shoestring and I were in a big bookshop yesterday looking for a birthday present for Mr Shoestring, I had just a few pounds in my purse, Miss Shoestring was flexing her debit card ! I knew that I was not supposed to buying anything as the next job was to tally up this month's spending so far on our spreadsheet. Then I saw the clearance section, everything 50p !
I wandered over, there were several nice books in the section, at least 3 that I could imagine myself buying, I started to read a few pages ! It would only cost a few pounds, I had enough cash ! Then I worked out that on my low wage it was several minutes of time, I had plenty of books from the library, I could even order these books from the library, I didn't need to buy the books, I would rather have the time ! I carried on looking but I purchased nothing ! I would like my money and my life !
What do you do about impulse spending ?