Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Ashamed to be Frugal?


Hello
I'm really proud to be frugal, obviously with a blog title such as mine, but many people are embarrassed to be so. It is seen as mean or necessary because one is poor or not as good as others or bad for "street cred".
While frugality, making do and mending may be born initially out of fiscal necessity, it is a way of life practiced by many because it is the their preferred way of life and it's not just about money.

I know many families that live well, with holidays abroad, up to the minute decor that they change regularly along with the furniture, wardrobes full of the latest fashions (advertising the maker on the outside! what's that about?!) I also know that some of these families are in debt. They don't consider it debt, but maxed with your, several credit and store cards, the cars bought on finance and a mortgage only just afforded (fingers tightly crossed that the interest rate doesn't go up) is serious debt!
Both parents must work long hours to to continue with this lifestyle which mirrors that of their friends and neighbours.
 Many readers of the frugal blogs know how these families could get this debt down so that they are in a less precarious state. The difficulty is firstly, helping people to see that they are one accident or illness short of financial disaster. Secondly, and probably far more difficult, is helping them to see that getting out of debt means making living their life differently, but does not mean that they have to lose face with their friends and "the Jones'"
  The solution is to become eco warriors and proudly embrace sustainable living!!

Dear David Attenborough has recently shown us that saving the planet is cool. He has awakened the public to look at plastic use and waste. Hurrah!  This in turn has inspired people to look at other kinds of waste and how recycling, upcycling, repurposing is an issue for us all. I also noticed an advert for "Vanish" that advocates removing stains to keep clothes going longer and  reducing the amount going to landfill, more good news. Recycling and reusing saves money, making do saves money, reducing your carbon footprint saves money.
And even if you don't need to be careful with money living more sustainably is a public spirited way to live your life as resources are limited and will only stretch so far.
I realise that this post is a bit preachy!
Back soon (I always say that and never do!)
Gillx


28 comments:

  1. Living sustainably - yes I support that Gill. I also disapprove of throwing money around. I am not frugal but I hope I spend it wisely.

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    1. I think you spend your money well Weave. You live an interesting life with money well spent.
      Gillx

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  2. I totally agree. My personal bugbear is new kitchens. They do not make anyone a better cook, or a healthier person. Just having new for the sake of it is a total waste of hard-earned money. I often rant about this because I used to know someone who had a new kitchen every three years. THREE YEARS!!! Only the husband worked, and I can only imagine that every day he went out to work knowing that most of what he earned would go on things that they really didn't need.

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    1. These people obviously had no imagination or more mioney than good sense. That’s just wasteful and self absorbed.

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    2. As a good friend of mine said one day when we were discussing the cost of kitchens "Well, when you think about it, it's just cupboards to put stuff in." Think of it like that and the 'need' for a new one goes out of the window! Tracy

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    3. TVA I empathise with the husband too. With more care they could BOTH have an easier life.
      Franny and Danny I agree they have little imagination ,being led only by what business tells them they need.
      Anon. Your friend has a valid point I think being easy to clean is what is most needed, that being said my doors are shocking to clean, but I still wont get new ones!

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  3. I was raised to look at every penny several times before parting with it, to mend and repair rather than replacing and to tread lightly upon the land. I worked hard for my money and am not about to fritter it away on nonsense.

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    1. I think the "treading lightly on the land" is what might eventually make some people change. ever the optimist me!
      It is easier for those of us that lived during or just after the war and were not used to having everything we wanted.

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  4. I think people who are ashamed to be frugal are prisoners to everyone and everything. They are putting everyone else in front of their own needs.

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  5. I was born just after the end of WW2, when frugality was essential. I'm certainly not poor, but being cautious with money, and not wasting, has always been important to me. I'm proud to say that I've never been in debt.

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    1. I think being bought up during or after the war DID affect us, small as we were and makes us appreciate what we have without the sense of entitlement of many of subsequent generations.

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  6. Being frugal is being sensible, I don't understand this labels on the outside of clothes, I wouldn't know a designer label if it jumped up and slapped me, so a big thumbs up from me off anyone who lives within there means.

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    1. I don't see why I should pay more to advertise for someone! yes frugality IS being sensible.

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  7. Being of the older (much older!) generation, the frugality of today would've been considered simply normal behaviour when I was a child. We seldom cut string - knots had to be untied so that we could use the string again. People don't tend to use string these days, but it demonstrated the need to save what we could when goods and money were short. Similarly, parcels came wrapped in brown paper and that had to be carefully folded for future use. We used the waxed paper from bread in which to wrap sandwiches, and jam jars were always washed out and kept for jam making or for cleaning paintbrushes in white spirit in. Indeed, every part of our lives was touched in some way by the need for frugality and we didn't think anything of it; it was how we lived. Goods had to be paid for on the nail, large purchases had to be saved for or bought on Hire Purchase, where by you 'hired' something until it was paid for and until that final payment was made, if you defaulted, the company from whom you bought it could come and remove it from your home.
    And we didn't need straws with which to drink once we had left babyhood! Straws are such a silly modern fashion and are making such a mess of our oceans. I even asked my dental hygienist if they made much difference in preventing staining of the teeth, in case anyone says this is the reason they use them. They make very little difference, she said, because when you swallow, some of the liquid goes back into the mouth. I wish then that our dental surgery could've mentioned this to one of their employees who, at the reception desk was drinking from a plastic mug through a straw, to set a good example and ditch the straw habit!
    But if we all do what we can to reduce landfill and waste in general, this surely must help to save our wonderful planet. They are even clearing up Mount Everest now, where years of tourists and climbers have left their mark (and a very messy mark it is, too.)
    Margaret P
    www.margaretpowling.com

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    1. Hi Margaret . I still do all those things you mentioned in your first paragraph, bet you do too!
      I had forgotten about "hiring" until paid for. We bought our first TV that way.
      As for straws.. you are so right, only children used straws and then only at birthday parties!

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  8. I think frugality is a good thing, reduce and recycle a mainstay of eco living. But what we have at the moment is access to free credit, those cards are a temptation to people who want something quick, the adverse side is when they have to pay back money owed. The whole ethos of our society rests on us buying and selling, remove that, get heavy with plastic companies and we might have an answer.

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    1. oh yes I do think we should get heavy with the plastic companies. As for cards companies actively encourage people to get into more debt, sometimes increasing their credit rating when the person is clearly struggling to pay their original debt off.

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  9. We were married at 21 and had the first of our four children at 22 so we have always had to be frugal. To be honest though I really enjoy it. I love a challenge in life and am always saying "Right we can get through this difficult time!" I think lots of people see being frugal as depressing but I don't. Jane xx

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    1. Hee hee. You will gather I'm a person after your heart. I love the challenge of "managing".

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    2. Incidentally , we were 19 and 21 so it wasn't easy, but we did pretty well for ourselves

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  10. David Attenborough is nothing short of a god among men. I don't see the point of the word frugal, it is just shorthand for "common sense", if only it were as common as it ought to be!
    A fantastic post as always Gill, I hope you have a wonderful Easter x

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    1. Indeed! I think "common sense" is not as common as it should be!. I saw a clip of D A with the Queen the other night. I must watch the rest to see how many sensible messages he gets into the conversation.
      Thanks for the compliment and best wishes

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  11. We've always watched where our money goes but even more so since I gave up work. Being frugal doesn't mean going without, it just means living sensibly and not throwing money away.

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    1. I think we learn to have "sufficient" once retired, but then I didn't retire to see the world and go on cruises like some of my contemporaries. I am truly happy with what I have. I'm lucky that way.

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  12. Thank you everyone for your comments on this post and the many people who took the time to read it. It was one of my most read posts since I started blogging
    Gillx

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