Looking over my finances for the next few weeks is giving me a panic attack.
It's not even that things are drastically out of hand, it's just that I'm never 100% on top of my costs anymore. For a financial neat freak like yours truly, that's hard to handle. All the lists in the world won't make up for the fact that I have a lot of things to buy in a short period of time. I also don't get a big enough paycheck to cover it all in one shot. Enter the credit card. That thing is a blessing and a curse. Usually just a curse.
Other than reminding myself that things will ease up soon and that this is just a particularly strenuous month or two, I'm looking at ways to cut costs. There are obvious things like:
Don't buy new clothes for a while
Bring lunch to work
Have a glass of wine in the backyard instead of going out for drinks on a patio
No more buying "stuff" unless it's essential
Be prepared to say no to outings where I know I'll spend money
I'm also thinking about using up what I've got stored in my pantry... And I mean REALLY using it up. I've stocked up on a pretty impressive number of things: fish, tofu, grains, baking stuff, spices, noodles, soy milk, legumes... The list goes on. But I never seem to deplete my collection. Since I get a box of fresh veggies and fruit once a week from Life Organic, I should be able to make do with what I've got instead of always making small grocery trips for the extras. I wonder how long I could do this for? My food wouldn't be super rich or fancy, but it would still be very tasty. I would allow myself to get things like milk, eggs and yogurt if need be, but otherwise? I'm going to see how much cupboard space I can free up.
If you've got a suggestion to help cut costs, please let me know. I'm all ears. I used to be the queen of frugality, and I think I need a refresher.