I was having lunch (using a coupon, of course) with one of my most frugal friends when she laid a bomb on me: there are only two types of frugal people.
I have always believed there are many types of frugal folks because financial situation, upbringing, and goals vary widely. But when she explained herself, I realized she was right.
Type No. 1 – Frugal by Nature
Type 1 folks are frugal by nature. Spending money causes us pain and we often go without spending even if it would make our lives easier. We will go without, postpone, or delay to save. We will spend extra time researching a product irregardless of how much – or how little – we stand to gain, dollarwise. We will drive extra miles to shave a few bucks off a purchase. The bottom line is that we get an emotional hit from snagging a hot deal and are willing to deny ourselves to score.
Type No. 2. – Frugal by Necessity
Type 2 folks are frugal because we have to be. We recently got laid off, have a partner/spouse who lost a job, or left a job or to raise a family. We want to use coupons and look for sales to save. We are savvy enough to recognize we need to budget and alter our spending behavior, but get hung up because spending money brings us joy, even if we later feel stressed out by our cashflow. We do our best to distinguish between needs and wants. Bottom line is we get an emotional hit from having a new thing, regardless of price.
I know I’m type No. 1 because I am such a firm believer in doing things myself to save money that I often get into ridiculous situations, like the time I made my summer intern create thousands of homemade raffle tickets. Or the time I decided to distribute flyers across Los Angeles via bicycle on a 95-degree day to save gas money. Or the time…
Which type are you?