When you hear the word downsize, does it make you cringe? Maybe it’s the fear of losing your comfortable lifestyle or feeling trapped. However, downsizing your lifestyle doesn’t have to be a negative event. It can provide you with a sense of freedom and help you accelerate your progress toward your financial goals.
If you’re ready to start spending less while maintaining a full life, here are some tips for downsizing your lifestyle.
EXAMINE YOUR EXPENSES AND YOUR PRIORITIES
The first step to downsizing your life is evaluating where you’re spending your money. You want to identify areas where you may have money leaks or you’re spending an exorbitant amount in a certain budget category. It’s important to understand if you’re spending on items you need or simply because you have the means to purchase them.
Next, examine your financial priorities. If your financial priorities and expenses don’t align, it’s time to make some adjustments. You may want to cut back on dining out and focus on your health instead of spending a large chunk of your budget on unnecessary dining experiences.
Decide what you want to spend your money on and begin cutting back on your other expenses.
DECLUTTER YOUR LIFE
Do you have items around your home that are collecting dust on your shelves or in your closets? If you have items lying around that you have no use for, it’s time to start purging. You can have a yard sale, sell your items on websites like Facebook Marketplace, donate your goods (and get a tax deduction) or just give them to friends and family.
Additionally, you may want to find alternative items to help you streamline your lifestyle. For example, it you have a lot of CDs, take the time to upload them to your computer or mobile device.
This can be a time-consuming task, but you’ll find that once you start purging your household of unused items, you will begin to feel lighter. As an added bonus, you’ll make a little money in the process.
MAKE A DEFLATION PLAN
Finally, you will need to make a deflation plan for how you want to spend your money and maintain your new, simplified life. If your goals are to spend more time with your family engaging in inexpensive activities, you’ll have to exert more energy researching and planning frugal events. Or, if you want to sustain a healthier way of living, you may want to invest your time in meal prepping and finding healthy recipes.
Keep in mind, you don’t have to downsize every aspect of your life all at once. You can focus on one aspect and move on to other areas when you feel comfortable. A lot of change may discourage the process.
The best way to make a permanent change in your habits is to slow down and focus on the lifestyle you most desire.