Productive Spending

Just by my title you might be cringing, or rolling your eyes, or something.  And if you’ve been following me a while, you hopefully will realize that I’m not here to tell you what to do – I do aim to challenge the way you think about things.  It’s your life after all and no one but you is living it.  Similarly with organizing principles, it’s about finding what works for you – taking the pieces and creating your own version.

Therefore, here’s one of the things I’ve learned for myself – there are times and places to spend more money.  We hopefully all know that it’s wise to watch what and how we spend our money (though some statistics show few of us keep a budget).  Yet, as with so much of what I talk about – I encourage you to be mindful.

Coming from parents who have tendencies toward being frugal, I can struggle to spend a couple of dollars for a treat.  Once a year, chocolate oranges are available – around Christmas and I patiently wait for opening the stocking since my husband knows how much I love them.  This year he wasn’t home and I walked into a store and happened to see them.  I almost walked away, yet this is a treat I enjoy once a year, so why not?  I bought myself two and savored every bite – those few dollars were well spent.

From an organizing perspective, I probably make my strongest suggestion during the whole process for their waiting to purchase supplies – those desirable containers and tools for helping with organization.  This doesn’t come from a frugal point of view; it’s purely practical though it most often saves time and money in the long run too.  If you buy a neat organizing tool before you’re ready to use it, let alone know if it’s going to meet your specific needs – it often becomes clutter.  If you wait until you know what you need and can use it – you can bring it home and put it to use immediately.

When my husband and I moved into our new home, our first house, we bought a stud finder.  We knew nothing about our walls or what kind of stud finder would be best for us and we went with a fairly inexpensive one.  It turned out to be useless.  Yet, this doesn’t mean the highest end product is the answer either.  It does mean that it’s worth considering what your needs are – both for yourself and future.

It’s not always easy to know what is the worth spending the money on – when I first got my iPad, I picked up a stylus to use with a handwriting program.  It worked, though too often it was frustrating and inconsistent.  After talking with my husband, I purchased a different model that works really well.  I appreciate its quality and have begun eliminating paper clutter from phone messages by using my stylus and iPad.

As you can see, this isn’t about a suggestion that will fit all of you – it’s about your life and stuff.  Yet, it is about thinking about the things that have value and use in your life – and not scrimping on spending the money that will help support you.  Living on either extreme rarely serves anyone.  Therefore, when and where does it make sense to spend some more money for your needs?

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