What is Frugal Living?
Frugal living is not creating a budget, bringing your lunch to work, never eating out, wearing hand me down clothes, keeping the thermostat at 64 or even using coupons.
Those things can contribute to a frugal lifestyle, but they are simply strategies and techniques. Tools if you will-not frugal living itself. Frugal living can also be buying top quality, high priced clothing because it will last you longer. Or eating out every Friday night-by cutting corners somewhere else.
There is no single set of actions that can be pointed to with a cry of “There, that’s it, that is frugal living!”. As a matter of fact, some of the people around you who have most embraced frugal living may not appear to the casual eye to be frugal at all.
So how do I define it? After all, I have spent years writing about it and practicing a frugal lifestyle-I must have an opinion!
The first and most important point to me is that frugal living is a philosophy, not a set of tasks. It is the idea that we all have a finite set of resources available to us, and that we should make conscious decisions about how and where to spend those resources (be they time, effort or money) in order to reach our goals.
Frugal living accepts the fact that we can’t always have everything we want right now and makes decisions based on each individual (or family’s) priorities. Frugal living believes that some things you have to wait for, and work for. That the world doesn’t “owe” you anything, not matter how wonderful you are-that sometimes you will have more, or less than someone else, and that sometimes you will have to sacrifice in the short term for a long term goal.
Frugal living is about being conscious, and caring, and creating priorities.
What do you think?
***This is the first post in the “Frugal Living Primer” series***