Frugal Fatigue Syndrome

Frugal Fatigue Syndrome.

It’s an actual term to describe a new disorder both psychologists and economists are talking about right now. It’s what happens to a person when they have gone for so long pinching every penny that they just eventually burn out, lose self-control, motivation, and discipline, and spend money they know they don’t have simply because they are exhausted from caring.

It’s an easy place to fall into…

You budget. You watch where every dollar goes. You use cash envelopes. You get creative. You just say no. You learn to live without. You stop caring what everybody else thinks.

And then you just feel sorry for yourself. You feel like the only one having to deprive yourself. You just want to get spoiled to make yourself feel better. You want to feel “normal.”

How do you guard against Frugal Fatigue?

  • Purposefully budget money that is specifically for blowing on whatever you want. Even if it’s $5 so you can treat yourself to a Starbucks one night in the next week. If you know that money isn’t going to be a detriment to your family and will keep you sane, you MUST do it to keep your head in the game for the long haul. That doesn’t mean you go overboard and allocate hundreds of dollars to yourself because you think you deserve it. It is just something small each month that will keep you from burning out.
  • Don’t get bogged down in all the deals. Over the past several months of being pregnant, going through some of the terrible two’s terribly early, and navigating food allergies with Sadie, I have learned that simplifying my life is a must. I just don’t have the mental capacity to look at all the ads, all the blogs, and all the deals. Instead, I focus on the things I really need and do the best I can in getting those things at rock bottom prices. Then when you do well, it’s exciting to be forth the effort.

For example:

  • We sold a bunch of our possessions (and family’s possessions) we weren’t using to pay cash for a new dining room table. Yes…it took nearly a year to be able to do it. And yes, we’ve been eating off of a Costco folding table to get to this point. But there’s no better feeling than paying cash for your dream table you will have FOREVER!
  • Luckily, with a sale and stacking coupons, I made money on buying Zantac this week instead of paying for it. This is all a prego woman with some killer heartburn from baby boy needs. It’s the small things.
  • I was able to stock up on necessary groceries like beans and chicken stock without even having to leave my couch for half the price of retail thanks to ShopAtHome. I got all my grocery shopping done for the week for $24. And, it will be delivered to my door for free. This is an exciting thing for a busy Mom who has a dwindling pantry and a daughter that HATES the shopping cart.

When you look at these small feats in the scheme of your family’s life, you can’t help but be happy because the small things you do really add up. Frugal Fatigue? Not here.


2 thoughts on “Frugal Fatigue Syndrome

  1. Hi Jessie! It’s Heather from A Coupon Chick – I love this article. Would you mind if I posted it this Friday, as a guest post from you? I know my readers would appreciate to hear this point of view.

    Let me know when you get a minute. Love the site’s new look, too!


  2. Pingback: $33 Grocery Challenge: The Menu Plan « The Brown Bag

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