Whether you’ve been working like a dog (OT baby!), been through a hell of a week (or month, or YEAR) or just need a little pick me up, often when we think of treating ourselves we think of splurging to the MAX. While this may feel good in the moment (and cross another big ticket item off of your wish list), this may not be getting you any closer to your financial goals. In fact, you may have even NOT been treating yourself because you feel like it isn’t in line with your financial goals (and you deserve ALL of the treats!). So, let’s figure out how to treat yourself without spending a ton of money!
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Let’s Go Over the Basics
Getting Over the Taboo
When did treating ourselves become such a taboo thing? Not only does treating yourself boost your mood and reduce stress (you can check out the full article here!), but you SHOULD just be allowed to do something nice for yourself without any strings attatched!
As Oprah says, a “”treat” is a small pleasure or indulgence that we give to ourselves just because we want it.” and goes on to explain it does not need to be earned nor justified! You can read the rest of Oprah’s wisdom on treating yourself here.
Consequences of Not Treating Yourself
Think about what happens when you implement a strict regime without any wiggle room – whether it’s a new diet, exercise regime or schedule that lacks any sort of freedom. The likely outcome is you don’t stick to it. You have feelings of anger and frustration towards the non-malleable new rules. You feel drained and deprived. And then what happens when we feel deprived of something? We end up going nuts searching for it. Whether it’s deep diving in the fridge at 2 in the morning or scrapping your new regime altogether, depriving ourselves has negative outcomes on our moods, goals and actions.
One Last Reality Check
Treating yourself is not bad. Repeat that again and again and then AGAIN. Treating ourselves is a way to provide ourselves and our lives with joy and indulgence. Treating ourselves is a necessary action to keep ourselves balanced, to recharge and to find joy in our lives. Don’t treat yourself as a prisoner of your own life – you’re allowed to find and experience joy and pleasure throughout your lifetime.
How to Treat Yourself Without Spending a Ton of Money
Now that we’ve established that treating ourselves is okay, necessary and vital to our existence (and probably thinking why the fuck haven’t I been doing this sooner), let’s get into how to treat yourself without spending a ton of money.
Below, I’m going to list different types of ways you can treat yourself (both monetary and non-monetary) without completely blowing your budget!
Treat Yourself With Time
One of the most common phrases people often say is they ‘don’t have time’. I’m urging you to really sit back and consider your schedule and to start making time for yourself. If you find yourself being one of those people who feels as though they have no extra time, here are 12 reasons why you may feel that way!
Treat yourself by making time for yourself. Give yourself 30 minutes to an hour a day to do something you truly enjoy (whatever that may be). Treating yourself with time doesn’t cost a single penny, and will surely enhance your life. Some activities you can use this time for include (but are not limited to) working on your hobbies, reading, getting in some exercise, going for a walk, catching up with a friend, etc.
Treat yourself to a block of time that is yours and yours only!
Indulge in Nature
Whether it’s a hike, going for a walk, visiting a natural landmark or sitting out in the garden, there are so many positives to spending time in nature. (You can check out the 10 benefits of spending time in nature here) Spending time in nature is proven to reduce stress, increase happiness and offers a sense of connectedness with the environment around us.
Do Something Luxurious for Yourself
Whether it’s cooking yourself your favourite meal, having a cozy night in on the couch, drawing a hot bubble bath etc., treating yourself to something that makes you feel good inside and out is something that doesn’t have to cost a ton of money. Doing something to love and honour yourself is a great way to leave you feeling worthy of the time spent, and enjoying whatever activity it is as an act of self love.
Indulge in Something Decadent
Pick up your favourite chocolate bar or bottle of wine. Treat yourself to a meal worth savouring. Use something you have gotten as a gift but were saving for the perfect moment. Making small splurges on something decadent not only are budget friendly, they also allow us the pleasure of getting something for ourselves we are going to enjoy and savour. Making small, occasional splurges can also prevent us from making bigger splurges when we feel deprived.
Take Yourself Out
Whether it’s to go see a movie or grab an ice-cream cone, again, making small splurges here and there are a great way to avoid making larger ones out of deprivation. You don’t have to blow a ton of money to make a small outing worth-while! Some other ideas include going out to a cafe, trying a cooking class (or other class being offered), taking a trip to the book store and more. Giving yourself the option to go out and make a small purchase is empowering and can leave you feeling satisfied!
Purchase Something on Your Wishlist
There is nothing wrong with spending money when it comes to treating yourself. We do want to be cautious about how much we spend (so we aren’t splurging and dropping large amounts of money every single time we want to treat ourselves) and that we’re not using spending merely as a way to justify treating ourselves. What happens when we hold back too strictly from doing something is that we often binge or go overboard – kind of like a rebound spend or splurge that gets out of hand.
One of the number one ways you can treat yourself without spending a ton of money is by allowing yourself to spend money on yourself! Choose something on your wish list that you’ve wanted for a while and make that purchase. Whether it’s a smaller ticket item or one of the pricier ones, allowing yourself to make that purchase guilt free is the key to not turning around and blowing a bunch of money later. Give yourself permission to make and purchase something you really want, while promising yourself no lingering signs of guilt.
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Let’s Get Treating
My highest hope for you is that after reading this post, you’ll realize that treating yourself is something you should be doing regularly and without guilt! There are so many ways you can treat yourself without spending a ton of money! If you have any ideas for treating yourself (or want to share with me how you treat yourself!), let me know in the comments below!