A friend invited me to a happy hour Friday and I instantly said yes. Having a drink with friends is one of life’s great pleasures. Then I remembered my spending moratorium. Ug.
I could bail, but this presents exactly the type of situation that makes the moratorium a worthy experiment. The point is not to sit at home for an entire month holding my breath until August when I can spend. The point is to live my life as normally as possible while not making an discretionary purchases. That means socializing with friends.
So far I have found plenty of free activities to do with my friends, including a game of pick-up Ultimate Frisbee, a picnic on the beach, and yoga (I buy classes in bulk to get the best price so it’s already paid for).
But going to a bar is going to directly confront my non-spending initiative. Luckily, I have a plan.
1. Eat before I go so I can honestly say I’m not hungry.
2. Leave my wallet home, except for my ID. No cash = no temptation.
3. Be very engaging so nobody notices I’m sipping water.
Apparently many folks are joining me on my spending moratorium. This morning news outlets reported retail sales are worse than the dismal expectations. GAP is down 10%, JC Penney is down 8%, Target is down 6%.
A reader named Emily, who joined me on the spending moratorium, wrote in with this update:
One purchase that I did make an exception for myself is a used copy of the South Beach Diet cookbook for use at home as I am redoing phase two at present and my father, who is a diabetic, should be eating fewer carbs anyway. As I considered it a health investment, I figured the $2.00 the store was asking for made it a worthy purchase. I’m glad to see your moratorium is still happening, albeit slightly challenging.
Who else is observing the moratorium this month? Email me an update, please.