Monday, July 20, 2009

Why Taking Care of Yourself is Frugal

On Friday, I wrote about Frugal ways to pamper yourself, but today I'm going to get a little more philosophical. A lot of frugal folks, particularly women, don't want to spend any money or time taking care of themselves. I know this because this is a trap I fall into when I start to get stressed or anxious about money. There are a lot of good reasons, though, why taking care of yourself is a very frugal thing to do.

Taking care of yourself saves money on healthcare. There are some obvious ways in which taking care of yourself saves money on healthcare: wearing sunscreen and taking care of your teeth, for example, are no brainers. There are other ways that spending some time on yourself can help though. Getting enough sleep and exercise, drinking water, and learning to manage your stress all improve your overall health. A little time now can keep you from getting sick and being totally out of commission later.

Taking care of yourself prevents impulse spending. For a number of reasons, when you feel taken care of you are much less likely to shop. First, if all you do is scrimp and save, sooner or later you'll burn out and have an "I deserve this" moment, which can cost quite a bit depending on what it is that you want. If you work little pleasures into your daily life, this is much less likely to hit you. Second, you'll be happier and therefore less likely to go shopping as a means of therapy. Finally, you'll discover how the things that you already have can bring you joy and won't really want as many other things.

Taking care of yourself helps you enjoy life more. It's hard to remember what you're saving for after a while if it's all business. Being sure to take good care of yourself will help you maintain a positive outlook on things. This can keep you focused on your frugal choices, and help to make them permanent.


April said...

Very nicely put. The truth is that if we do NOT take care of ourselves, be it with time or money, bad things happen. I know bad things happen no matter what, but the level of "bad" escalates when we are run down, stressed out, doing too much. A slow stroll around the block will do wonders for one's well being. It doesn't have to be expensive to be good for you!

Jack said...

Great points all. And for some sobering but uplifted perspective on why taking care of yourself is a good idea, I invite you to check out this short video -- -- about the “aha moment” of a woman with a serious illness that changed her outlook on life. I think you’ll enjoy it and hope you’ll also check out the rest of the site, which was created by Mutual of Omaha to highlight inspirational stories, good works, and “aha moments” of all kinds.


free money said...

It is a whole lot easier to remember to take care of yourself when you have money in the first place
You in a more positive mind set and tend to care more about yourself
When you dont have any money you seem to be more negative and your self asteem is lower