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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 12:02 PM   #21
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I like to shop, but I infrequently buy much. Gabe and I go food shopping every day and if its raining or hot out we run amok at the local mall.

Trips to Sams Club are short treasure hunts to see what new stuff is in and whats been put on the closeout rack.

Nords is a big spender. I buy a $10 pair of costco sneakers every 5 years, jeans and shorts for under ten bucks a pair, and tee shirts...long sleeve in the winter and short sleeve in the summer. Couple of sweatshirts and thats my wardrobe for 3-5 years. Couple of hundred bucks tops.

I just wigged out and bought 6 button down hawaiian shirts to wear on the really hot days. Burned up about $35.

My wifes pretty cheap on clothes too, although she has a touch of Martha disease in the shoe area.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 12:08 PM   #22
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Two things that help:

1. Taking pleasure in seeing how much you didn't spend (e.g. looking at your monthly expenses in Quicken).

2. Exhausting your spending urge at garage sales (Recent examples: Perfect 17" inch Sylvania LCD flat-screen monitor: $23. Like-new down jacket, 50 cents. Cargo pants 50 cents). *
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 12:17 PM   #23
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I am looking forward to not shopping.
Current shopping trends are still on the upward trend. DW continues to lose weight and has to "dress up" at work so that means new "work" clothes every few months.

I don't buy much other than basic maintenance/repair stuff. I have enough clothes to last years before I manage to ruin or wear them out. I get clothes for gifts most of the time so the only thing I really buy is underwear and shoes from time to time.

I have assurances from DW that once she is no longer working...her shopping spree will stop and she can "use" what she already has. I am doubtful but encouraged.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 12:52 PM   #24
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
I am looking forward to not shopping.* *
I have assurances from DW that once she is no longer working...her shopping spree will stop and she can "use" what she already has.* I am doubtful but encouraged.* *
In our house that time vacuum has been filled by garage sales & Craigslist.

Nothing like driving across the island (twice) on a Sunday night to pick up a $50 dishwasher.

Of course that's less painful than buying a top-of-the-line $600 dishwasher and having my FIL find out how much we spent on his wife's kitchen appliances...
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 01:29 PM   #25
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I hate to buy clothes. But, let me at any tools, or power equipment and I love it. I think the more solid the purchase is, the more I like it.

I do have a weakness for electronics, but have been better lately...
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 02:29 PM   #26
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
2. Exhausting your spending urge at garage sales (Recent examples: Perfect 17" inch Sylvania LCD flat-screen monitor: $23. Like-new down jacket, 50 cents. Cargo pants 50 cents).
That should be illegal!!!
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 04:39 PM   #27
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
I am doubtful but encouraged.
Soon to be annoyed and disappointed
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 04:42 PM   #28
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Soon to be annoyed and disappointed
Nah,

I have lived with the ultimate shopper and DW is not even in the same ballpark.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 08:45 PM   #29
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I'm simply amazed with you guys who can simply dress with T shirt, khakis, spend only $50 for outfit.

Nver balance what I spent but so far this year it could have been 2K. My problem is I tend to think about mom, sisters, 1/3 of what I bought is usually for them. Second problem is I bought 1 and give away 2...my wardrobe stays current and lean. Like it that way.

That said, I'm a good saver (think I am) and a very much believer that life should be simple.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 09:03 PM   #30
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I let others buy me clothes. It gives them pleasure to give me clothes, so that's what I let them do.

But I do not mind shopping for clothes when I need them AND they are on sale. I spend about $500 or less per year on clothes including shoes. My wardrobe consists of blue jeans, khakis, dress shirts, sweaters, shorts, t-shirts, casual shoes, sandals, socks and underwear. I have a blazer that I wear about twice a year and a suit that I wear about once every 2 years.

As for simple clothes, there are only 2 kinds of socks: white and black. There is no possibility of getting a mis-matched pair.

My wardrobe stays current as well. Jeans, dress shirts, khakis never go out of style. My new blazer is exactly the same at the one I bought 20 years ago that was worn out.

I do not need power tools. I have tools and use them, but prefer non-electrical ones. Power tools are too much work.

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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 09:49 PM   #31
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Sil;
Trombone Al is onto something: If you really just have a need to go splurge and buy something, do it in a place where you won't get hurt: a thrift store in a church in an upscale neighborhood has given my wife a ton of satisfaction at 1950s prices.

I admit that I'm down to buying a few polo shirts a year (the collars wear out and sometimes I need to look presentable) and a fresh pair of loose-fit khakis (in ER, even though my waistline hasn't expanded, I have no patience for anything that constrains me like my old suit pants used to). I could trim the closet clutter way back -- most of the stuff in there I haven't touched in years... So, buy more? Can't see it.

Even Home Depot is losing its grip on me, (but that could be because of my new Milwaukee 1/2" drill and matching masonry bit set)
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 10:16 PM   #32
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I used to love shopping. It was a great release and satisfaction. But I didn't have a lot of satisfaction in other areas of my life. I now find I have no real interest in shopping about 360 days of the year. About twice a year I go on a binge and buy spring/summer clothes or winter clothes. This spring I went to the Coldwater Creek Outlet store. I had a $100 G.C. I added $175 of my own and came home with : two skirts, two pairs of pants, one pair of capris, one jacket and five tops. I am still working and needing dress-up clothes, this will get me through the summer and fall in good style.

But to address the larger issue, I think if you get more satisfaction from spending than saving, making it to FIRE is going to be harder. A $1,000 bump in my asset spreadsheet makes me much happier than $1,000 worth of purchases ever could.

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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 10:25 PM   #33
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I'm glad Siv started this thread. I was thinking of asking something similar, but I confidently expected the answers to be different from the norm because this is a group of early retirees and those who want to be. *To accomplish ER your relationship to shopping would either 1) already be unusual by cultural standards, or 2) be the first thing you'd slate for change.

I can't recall which guru said it but you can either look rich or be rich--most people won't have enough money in their lifetimes to do both.

I'm just beginning to see the error of my ways. Shopping was always a distraction and I knew it was problematic. I could write an essay on the psychological implications. I had a period of buying handbags which was very strange, because I work in radio. I wear jeans and tee shirts almost exclusively, yet I was shopping for "it" bags and designer-inspired pieces that didn't go with my wardrobe at all. I was indulging in a fantasy of a lifestyle that I will never have, and I don't really even want to have it. Kind of a puzzler.

A trick I use on myself:* thinking of the amount of money I've spent on girly bullshit--accessories, makeup, non-essentials--in my lifetime, and imagining how much money it represents and how much interest that amount would have gained over the years had I invested it instead. This is meant to keep me from going shopping. It doesn't always work, but it does make me cry.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 10:36 PM   #34
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Tikitoast -
Don't beat yourself too badly over this -- it's pretty normal. Figuring this out relatively early on and just becoming aware of it is a huge step. The Millionaire Next Door research definitely backs up what you said, though, about 'looking rich or being rich'.

I've come to define 'rich' now as having much more to do with time and freedom than with money. Maybe a self-serving definition, but there is nothing attractive about the lifestyles of some of the traditionally rich people I know who are slaves to stressful jobs and out-of-whack lives. Real wealth is in the clarity and freedom to live your life on your own terms -- for me that means FIRE blended with healthy relationships, good physical health, plenty of interests and, in honor of the French win over Portugal, why not: joi de vivre!
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-05-2006, 11:25 PM   #35
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Siv
I'm simply amazed with you guys who can simply dress with T shirt, khakis, spend only $50 for outfit.
T-shirt, shorts, & slippers.

Total cost about $8, split between Goodwill & Long's Drugs...

Your ER clothing budget will probably drop by a similar fraction.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-06-2006, 07:25 AM   #36
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

I wasn't born with the 'shopping gene' according to hubby. I'd rather go hiking, canoeing, snowshoeing, etc. than waste my time indoors spending money on things I don't need. A few pairs of jeans, a couple pairs of Birkenstocks, and some Life is Good T-shirts and I'm good to go.

DH has always been the shopper in the family but he's slowly mending his ways. He can't fit anymore clothes in his closet and he has all the power tools a guy could want. Of course he still has his heart set on a "tractor with a bucket". I don't know why...we only have half an acre.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-06-2006, 07:49 AM   #37
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Girly stuff: *the guy who cuts my hair charges $55 a pop. *I go quarterly and make the next appointment while I'm there. *The women at the salon all snicker at the very idea that someone could wait that long between haircuts, let alone not do all the color and what-have-you. He laughed when I pulled out my spreadsheet of haircut costs, dating back to 2000, showing his price increases and how I determined the optimal number of haircuts a year to look marginally presentable. *He's glad I'm his only weird client! *Trade-off city-I could go to someone cheaper more often, but a good haircut looks better longer. *

I have gotten better at figuring out what purchases really still thrill me when the newness wears off, and which expenses bring the most satisfaction beyond the initial rush. *My top 5: *the electric gate opener (no getting out in the rain), the '76 Airstream MH, the iPod, my digital camera, and the 1970 Caddy convertible (now gone ). *These purchases provided WAY more satisfaction than their cost would indicate.

We have some quibbles over "special tools", but fortunately the tractor came with enough attachments to keep DH busy (box blade, 4' mower, tiller). But don't tell him he could get one with bucket!
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-06-2006, 08:25 AM   #38
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

when we decided to pay off the house we didn't shop at all except for food for over a year. It was so freeing. We also had the kids permanently move out so we started cleaning every closet, drawer, etc. and decluttered.
The combination of both changed our habits. When you start really cleaning the corners of the basement and closets we were amazed at all the stuff we wasted money on.

It was funny when we did pay off the house. I went and bought all new socks and undergarments and threw all the old stuff away. It was the big joke here what a splurge it was. I made a few purchases of fresh shirts to spruce up the wardrobes, but since DH wears company issued shirts and pants, and our neighbor owns a bar and is constanly giving him promotional t-shirts our wardrobe budget is very small.

Now that I am out of work I wear shorts and t's every day. I have a couple of dresses in case of a funeral or other occasion but basically gave all the work clothes up. That was actually fun.
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-06-2006, 10:03 AM   #39
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Best way to buy clothes is go to other countries and buy them and mail them back.

I buy an around the world ticket and stop in 3-5 places buy or have my clothes made and mail them back.* *The difference I would of paid at the local mall pays for the airfare.

For my lodging I use my RCI weeks.* I bought timeshare weeks off ebay for $225 and use that to trade.* The placed I stayed in Sydney was $150 U.S. per night.* The place I stayed at in Bangkok was $185 U.S. per night.* My maintenance fee is $104 per year.* *
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?
Old 07-06-2006, 10:08 AM   #40
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Re: How could you refrain from shopping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mclesters
Girly stuff: the guy who cuts my hair charges $55 a pop.
Pair of electric clippers and a comb, about $35 five years ago.

Giving myself the exact same haircut I was getting before that: free.

Just watched what the folks that cut my hair did and then copied it. But then its not like I'm getting some complex style or anything.

I might even get a flowbee or something like that and see how it works. How bad can it be?

My wife still resists my offers to cut her hair, but I think the place she goes to charges about $15. Some stylist in the 'bad part of town', which around here is saying something...
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