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Killing the Urge to Splurge: Tips on Saving Money and Maintaining Self-Control

Wasting money can be so easy for college students. Fast food, online shopping, and sweatshirts from the bookstore can add up fast! If you need to save up or are just looking to carry your money better, here are some tips on how to stay in control of your wallet!

Is It a Necessity?

Imagine that you’re walking around town and you see something that catches your eye, or you’re browsing online, and you see this $140 jacket that you really just have to have. You feel that jolt of excitement, and your attention is entirely focused on the item that you’re mesmerized by.

Before you buy it at the store or hit the “add to cart” button, stop and ask, “Is this a necessity”?

A necessity is something that you need to survive: food, water, clothing, transportation, etc. If it’s something that you can live without, but you don’t want to, it isn’t a necessity.


Will You Still Use It in A Few Years?

This question will help you determine if the item you want is a need or want.

Think about it: how many items do you own that you actually don’t use? When you buy something, you want to make sure that you are going to use it in the next 2-5 years, so that it’s not sitting on the side, not being used.

What’s the Cost?

Money can be hard to come by for some. Look at the price of the item that you want to buy. If you want that $140 jacket, look and see if you have the expenses to do so. 

You might have the $140 for the jacket now, but will you have your expenses covered first? Will your bills be paid on time? Sometimes, preparing for the future is better so you won’t fall into a situation and regret buying the $140 jacket with money that could be used for times when you’ll actually need it. 

Can Your Hunger Wait Until You Get Home?

Eating out can be fun, but it’s also costly. Splurging on food at restaurants daily or weekly can leave your appetite full, but your wallet quite empty. Ask yourself: “Can I wait until I make it back?”

You could also meal prep to save money. Meal prepping has also been shown to improve your health, so it’s the best of both worlds!

Set Goals & Stick to Them.

We set goals for ourselves all the time. The question is, do we really stick to them?

Try making a sticky note to yourself and place it in your room, in your car, or even putting a reminder in your phone. Sticking to your goal will help you succeed.

We all want to overspend sometimes, but the key is learning when to say “no.” People always talk about the “real world” to college students, but this is one of the most important things we can learn to prepare for life after graduation. I hope that, with the help of these tips, you will be able to kill the urge to splurge and save money!

Gwendolyn is a Louisiana Tech University graduate with a Bachelor's Degree in English with a concentration in Creative Writing. She worked as a contributing writer under the La Tech HC Chapter. In her free time, she loves to read, write, edit, listen to music, watch movies, and explore new places and things. She plans to find work in book publishing for children's books.
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