It is easy to get carried away by our usual ways of living that we may overlook significant pockets of opportunities to live well. One of the greatest myths that most of us unconsciously subscribe to is that we must fulfill a certain set of needs.
But most of the time, this set of “needs” is excessive for people in developed countries and most of these “needs” are not essential for survival.
That means, there is indeed a lot that we can actually do without! Imagine getting rid of the need for these excesses? You will end up having much more – in terms of time and money that you can invest in better things.
There are several ways anyone can have more by needing less. Here are 5 ways.
1) Review Your Monthly Subscriptions
Most of us surely have at least one thing that we subscribe to, which requires a monthly payment.
Without even realizing, we may not be fully utilizing these subscriptions but continue paying for them just because of a subconscious need for them that we have created but never required.
For example, I have been someone who grew up with the television as a centerpiece in my life. But when I eventually became an adult and started working, it became less and less of an importance to me. At one point, I even quit watching television, entirely, and felt no withdrawal symptoms.
So quite naturally, when I got married and bought our own home, my husband and I decided against having a television in our house. 4 years and at least $2000 of savings later (if I had subscribed for cable TV), it definitely does not feel like we are missing something. We saved a lot more time too!
Similarly, now I am considering giving up my monthly data plan for my iPad. I realize that I had created a previously non-existent need for it after subscribing to it. I definitely do not always “need” to access the Internet using my iPad while I’m on the go. If I really need to access Internet while I’m out, I can always use my 4G smart phone or find a café with wifi access.
Do you also have subscriptions like the above that you pay for monthly? What about reviewing them to see if you can do without some of those?
2) Cut Back On “Chilling” Expenses
If you are in your 20s or 30s, chances are, you spend a considerable amount of money chilling out with your partners or friends. You may think that it is a form of de-stressing and that you hardly get time out of your busy schedule to catch up anyway.
However, there are alternatives.
Ever thought of setting up a chilling corner in your own home? You don’t have to spend much on it. Get some simple furniture from IKEA, nice lighting, some plush cushions and you are ready to roll!
The next time you want to “chill out”, call your partners or friends over, make your own coffee or tea, enjoy the company for as long as you want with none of that money spent on a hefty bill! Over time, you will realize how much all of you enjoyed and how much you managed to save!
My husband and I used to often “chill out” at coffee joints, spending on overpriced teas and coffee that we could make at home. It does not take a genius to understand that we did not particularly go there because we badly needed to taste the expensive teas and coffee. We just wanted a cozy atmosphere in which we could spend some quality time together.
By creating a cozy chill-out corner in our home, we are able to save a lot of money and fulfill that desire in us to spend quality time together in a nice ambience. Better still, we can be in our pajamas… Perfect!
3) Research & Compare Prices Before Setting Off To Exact Store
Armed with the Internet, now anybody can research on prices and specifications of items they wish to purchase and make comparisons. Many of us already do that, but we do not necessarily make the decision to purchase while we are at home.
Instead, we choose to go to the massive, spiraling malls and departmental stores to hunt down
these items and in the middle of the search, we end up buying a lot of stuff that we do not need. That is precisely why the malls are designed like a huge maze to make you buy stuff you do not need.
So why not decide beforehand, and go straight down to the place, grab what you want and don’t look anywhere if you can’t help reaching for your wallet for stuff you didn’t plan to buy!
4) Create New Combinations Of Clothes Buried Deep In Your Closet
If you are like most people, you will be wearing only a select few of the myriad of clothes in your close… Simply because the rest of your clothes are buried deep inside your closet or right below the pile.
Sounds familiar? Many people don’t realize just how many gems they have hiding in the closet right now that they won’t need to go get a new set of clothes for the next year… Or at least next few months!
Why not set aside maybe 2 to 3 hours one day to go through your closet? Give away those clothes that are in good condition but you do not wish to wear. And then, organize those clothes you have not worn in a long time but can still wear. Put them in such a way that it would be easier for you to reach.
There you go, several new combinations of clothing without spending an extra dime.
5) Rent Out Some Space And Earn Money
If you are living in a 4 or 5 room HDB flat with a family of 3 or 4, consisting of young babies/toddlers, there is indeed a lot of money you can earn by renting out your spare rooms.
Yes, you may argue that you need the space because one is a playroom, one is a study room, one is a guest room etc – but be honest with yourself and think of how often you really use those rooms. Are there alternative ways you can create space in your home without those rooms?
If the answer is “yes”, why not rent out the spare rooms for passive income? If you are worried about your privacy being invaded, write out a set of house rules and get your future tenants to agree and sign them when they sign the tenancy agreement. List out everything you don’t want them to be doing and that you are uncomfortable with.
[feature image credits: cnn.com]