Sure, you can save a dollar here and a dollar there by cutting back a little, counting every penny, and staying exactly on the budget you create, but even greater savings will take a shift in thinking. The minimalist lifestyle isn't for everyone, but, even if you're not prepared to commit entirely, there are still a few pages you can take from the minimalist handbook.
Only Buy What You Need
Are you really saving money if you buy something just because it's on sale? If you weren't planning on buying it to begin with you're still wasting money.
To stop habits like that you need to carefully consider what you need and what you just want. Give yourself a day to think about purchasing any item, no matter what it is. Try to be more deliberate in your spending. Do you really need that new outfit, or does it just look more enticing because it's on the sale rack?
Don't Try to Keep Up With the Joneses
There's no need to spend extra money getting the latest and greatest things just to outdo your neighbor. It can be a slippery slope burning cash just to keep up appearances for social status, whether that's buying the newest cell phone or going out on the town every time your friends mention it to you. If you know you're just doing it because everyone else is, you might want to reconsider. Instead, keep in mind the things that you truly value. What are your priorities in life?
Money Does Not Buy Happiness
As a famous rapper once said, "mo money mo problems," and he may have been onto something. Research from the American Psychological Association shows even people who are well off aren't necessarily happier. It goes to show those shiny new possessions might make you smile for a little while, but they're not going to make you truly happy.
Remember to focus on what's really important: enjoying the time spent with family, friends, and neighbors. Remembering what you really value can not only make you feel better as a person, but it can help you save a little bit of money, too.