Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Why I'm on a Spending Ban


Welcome to my first post of 2017. It's been a bit overdue as I've been concentrating on writing my dissertation (thank god that's over!) and this post is going to be about budgeting and spending bans.

As a university student, it can be common for many of us to be *cough* in debt *cough*. I recently came out to my family and my boyfriend about my financial situation, as it wasn't getting any better not talking to anyone about it. Even though that terrifying number still lingers in my bank account, at least I don't have to hide it or suffer in silence.

With that came discussing the quickest way out of my overdraft, I put some money aside from my most recent student loan as I had "borrowed" money from myself to help fund the most expensive month ever; December. I'm still not 100% certain about using this money to bail out my overdraft, as that money is there for driving lessons etc. However, it would be a quicker way to get out soon, then all the money I earn would be mine.

I started to look at what needs to come out of my account each month; direct debits, rent, and travel costs. All of that already takes out quite a large chunk of my monthly wage, therefor I should not be spending more than I earn (a huge mistake I've made in the past year). Of which I decided to put myself on a "spending ban" I'd seen some other bloggers do this recently, and thought it's a good idea and hopefully will get me out of my debt soon(ish). This means no unnecessary spending, no more clothes, make up, food, alcohol, nights start to get the idea. Although this makes me a tad sad, it's for the benefit of my bank account. Ideally I'd love to be out of my overdraft and in a considerable amount of credit by the time I finish university (May this year).

I worked out all of my incomings up until May, and my necessary outgoings, and I should be in credit if I stick to my spending ban rules.

The only loopholes of my ban, are if I need any trousers or leggings (as my thunder thighs tend to rub and make ginormous holes 👍🏼) and if I need lunch. That's pretty much it, apart from needing to pay to get my dissertation bound. I know there will be the small purchase here and there, but I need to stop impulse buying to make myself happy. Yes, I am one of those people who got stuck in a rut buying things for happiness, only to be left unhappy and purchasing more.

The past year has been difficult for me, and I found that buying things (make up, books and clothes) made me feel better for a short period. My bank balance can't afford this bad habit anymore, and I have my support system to help stop me end this cycle. Today, I really wanted to splurge and buy the new 'Too Faced Sweet Peach Eye Shadow Palette' and I was close to clicking purchase. I had a justifiable excuse at the ready "I got some money for Christmas, that makes it ok", feeling close to giving in I told my boyfriend, he saw the price of it and exhaled dramatically. By telling him I wanted to buy it, it meant I couldn't because if he saw that I bought a £39 eye shadow palette I'd get a scolding and a lecture about saving my money. (I'm not bashing Too Faced, their products are beautiful, and I appreciate that they are cruelty free, it's just a shame my purse doesn't stretch that far!)

My advice to those who need to save, or get out of their overdraft:

1. Create a spreadsheet, or get a bullet journal
2. Figure out your necessary monthly outgoings
3. Work out your monthly incomings
4. See if there's anything you can give up, or reduce
5. Then see how long it would take you on a budget to get the amount you need
6. Tell people close to you of your plans, so they can help and guide you
7. If possible get a persistent other half to nag you the whole way (this can be optional but recommended, same effect can be created by a close friend who has similar traits)
8. Set yourself weekly spending budgets, you can even only take out so much cash and only have that to spend

I also would recommend getting a pot or jar that you can't open (easily found in a pound shop) so you can dedicate so much money to go in each month, and add in any change in your purse, and see how much you accumulate in a year, or a set time frame. I'm going to do this to save up for Christmas!

I hope this post has been a little inspiring for those in the same position as me, or even just trying to save up and are struggling! There's many helpful tips on Pinterest or you can look into bullet journals, they can help motivate you reach your goals.

Let me know if you have any handy saving or budgeting tips!

Saffron x


  1. When I was young(er), I found the best thing to do was to cut up all my credit and debit cards, and use cash only. Plastic money is far too easy to spend 😞 And using cash helps you to stop and think, "do I really need this?" To this day, both my daughter and I have a credit card with only a $500 limit on it, for use exclusively for on-line purchases. Keeps us under control! Wishing you good success with your spending ban, Saff!

    1. I'm definitely going to give myself cash only each week, I won't cut up my debit cards as it's a hassle to get new one's when I'd use them again 😂 when I'm out of my overdraft, I'm going to get rid of it, and I probably won't get a credit card until I'm ready to get a house and will need a credit score!

      Thank you very much! I hope to look back on this post when I'm slightly richer! xx

  2. I got into quite a lot of debt during the third year of my PhD. Like you I made a lot of impulse buys in attempt to make myself feel happy. The happiness was quickly replaced with feelings of guilt. In the end I cut up my credit card and got a family member to keep hold of my debit cards. Although I'm now debt free, I don't have a lot of money and find the MSE forums really useful. I'm doing the 1p saving challenge, hopefully at the end of 2017 I'll have almost £670. This year I've banned myself from spending any money on running clothes. It's only January 20th and I'm already struggling. Good luck with your spending ban xx

    1. Ooh that sounds like a good idea! I usually tend to chuck all of my loose change in a pot and when it's full I go to a change machine and try and put the money in my savings! Aww, don't worry I've been having several wobbles of my own! If I'm having one I tell my boyfriend, as I've started feeling guilty when I window shop now! Haha xx

  3. I'm going through something similar at the moment, The Mr and I want to buy a house and save up for other big things that may come up along the way but we're so good at sending £5 here and there and it's amazing how quickly it all adds up! We're aiming to have the savings we need in 3 years so now I've got to buckle down and stop buying Barry M nail varnish! 😂 💗

    1. Aww, yeah like the odd coffee here and there actually amounts to a lot, that could've gone towards savings! I wish you both luck with saving up! We both need it! xx

  4. Love this post! 💓

    I'm graduating university in July and money/finance is the one thing that is really playing on my mind. So this post has helped me out a lot!

    Francesca xx

    1. Thank you!

      I'm glad, and I hope it helps me too!


  5. Hey, good luck with your savings! You just seem so organised, I'm pretty sure you can reach your goal. I guess I'll need to take some inspiration from this post because I'm about to move out and I need to learn how to adult properly.

    Marti |

    1. Thank you very much! I'm glad I come across organised haha! Good luck with your move, you just have to be a little bit strict and think of the bigger picture! I don't want to buy things because I'm so focused on wanting to get out of my overdraft! xx


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