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When attempting a more budget friendly lifestyle, treats that could be considered ‘Self Care’ can often go right out of the window – however, looking after yourself is important even when saving money.
There are many reasons you could be suddenly facing a new, more budget friendly lifestyle. Whether it’s to pay off accumulated debts, a change in circumstance or simply that you want to get more value for your money day to day often some the treats that are the first thing to go when watching the pennies are also a form a self care for many of us. Particularly if you are a busy Mum or business woman that little bit of me time can have a huge affect on your mental health day to day.
Here are my tips for practicing self care when you’re broke.
For this post I asked some of my lovely blogging friends to suggest their favourite self care activities and I would come up with ways they could save money on them. Self care means different things to different people so I wanted to get a wide ranging idea of what people consider self care and why they enjoy the things they do.
Being that the majority of them are money bloggers they also came up with a fair few ideas you can do for free too – I’ve included a list of these at the end of the post.
Alison Etienne www.thriftymum.co.uk : ‘My favourite self care activity is going to the gym. It makes me feel good and it’s an hour or me time, it completely clears my head too’
When looking to rearrange your finances expenses such as Gym memberships are often the first thing to go- they can be super costly and are a huge waste of money if you’re not actually using them. However, if your gym is part of your self care routine and your keen to keep it then try some of the following.
- Work out how often you actually go – if it’s 3 or 4 times a week then it probably is worth the money and worth sticking with. Try looking at how much each session is actually costing you and whether you think it’s worth that amount.
- Some Gyms offer a pay as you go rather than a monthly subscription – if you’re going less often but still want to keep your membership this might be a good option.
- Shop around – many Gyms offer excellent rates to new members, shopping around might save you some money while your sort your finances. You could even try asking your existing gym for a discount – don’t ask don’t get!
If you’re an avid reader, buying books can become a bit of a habit – especially if you always like to have a book on the go – places the trains station WHSmith can be all too tempting, especially if there is particular author that you love – it’s always so easy to buy their new books as soon as they come out!
Lynn James – Www.mrsmummypenny.co.uk ‘Starting off the day with a free yoga tutorial on YouTube is so good. I love psychetruth who have a huge selection of video for however you are feeling. The empowerment and motivational ones are great’
If your finances mean needing to give up classes you enjoy, such as Yoga, there are some options for reviving these on a budget. As Lynn mentions above, Yoga tutorials on Youtube can be a great way to your fix without paying a penny, or even needing to leave the house. It may also be worth shopping around – prices for classes can vary substantially.
Girls Night In
Michelle Bailey www.timeandpence.com ‘My favourite self care activity is a girls night in with some girlfriends. A good laugh with friends is a great tonic!’
A night in with the girls, rather than a night out, is already a fab money saver.
Take those saving further by:
- Making sure everyone brings something – the host shouldn’t be left with the all the costs for food and drinks
- If you’re big drinkers neither the alcohol nor mixers need to be branded – Lidl and Aldi in particular do some fab budget friendly spirit options.
- Skip the takeaway and bring your own food – if you’re more into a sit down dinner than snacks ask each person to bring a different course so there’s plenty for everyone without breaking the bank.
Jennifer Kempson – www.mamafurfur.com ‘Can’t beat a little manicure and pedicure at home or even a face mask’
Jennifer is absolutely right with her comment – there’s nothing better than a bit of pampering and it’s definitely cheaper to it yourself at home. However, if you are used to heading to the spa or salon for your beauty treatments there are still plenty of ways you can save.
- Finding a local beauty school or training college often means treatments are much cheaper. They are still completely safe and fully supervised by professionals and you could end up saving a fortune.
- Websites like Groupon and Wowcher have loads of deals all over the country for various treatments, spa days hair salons.
- Emma Maslin from www.themoneywhisperer.co.uk‘I bought a UV gel kit about 3 years ago – cost slightly more than one trip to the nail salon and has had so much use. I love to put the radio on and do my nails in the evening – it’s so therapeutic as you have to concentrate so I don’t think about anything else!’
Coffee & Cake
Plus – A few Free Self Care Activities
As well as the forms of self care they do cost money there is also plenty you could be doing for free. Sometimes it’s all about taking the time for yourself and learning what works for you.
Pete Chatfield – www.householdmoneysaving.com ‘Going for a run. It keeps me fit and gives me a chance to listen to some music or a podcast in peace’
Nicola Richardson – thefrugalcottage.com ‘My favourite self care activity is to take a bath. Even a 5 minute soak in peace can do wonders for my frame of mind’