Here are some costs I have managed to cut down on or eliminate throughout the years and why.
Gym pass — I live in one of the most temperate cities in Canada. Whether staying inside doing yoga or a workout video or outside, running trails, biking, rollerblading, kayaking there are free (or relatively cheap) and fun opportunities for a workout. At the very least cheap drop-in rates at the municipal gym.
Cable — I can’t justify paying to watch loud commercials when I can watch the same, commercial-free stuff on my computer whenever I want. Plus, it’s all re-runs unless I make the commitment to carve out time to watch a certain show at a certain time. Ball and freaking chain man.
Hydro — while I can’t eliminate it I can certainly do my part in shaving this down. Since it’s not a fixed rate and depends on your consumption, being conscious of what’s plugged in and lights that are on but not in use, it all helps.
Credit — by making the effort to cut down on my debt, throwing down huge chunks, I am cutting out how much interest I pay and actually making a dent in the principal amount. Feels good.
Books, CDs & DVDs — Don’t need their physical presence. I have a stack of CDs in a bag that I planned to move along with me then thought, if I get rid of CDs, then I can also get rid of my CD player. I have a laptop with all of my music and a set of external speakers to plug into it. Why do I need to double up?
Less Stuff — I try and remain conscious of what I am bringing into my house. I have space and it’s limited. And the only way to keep it being space and not turning into a long-term storage facility is by being aware of what I am bringing in.
Eating Out — Moving away from downtown helped this. I would love to gain new (or any) skills in the kitchen so while I have cut back on going out, I plan to beef up my cooking abilities.
Being Aware — the breakdown is simple. Money comes in, money goes out. I want to hang on to more of the money that comes in by not spending as much. This can be difficult and it’s a conscious decision requiring self-reminders. Also, it’s a balance. Enjoying life while not dragging yourself down with debt.
It’s always easier said than done but with a little conviction and determination, enjoying experiences more than physical items simple living is a new journey for me and I think it’s worth it.