Home LifestyleFrugal Living Why Being Frugal is About More Than (Just) Saving Money

Why Being Frugal is About More Than (Just) Saving Money

by Diane

To me, being frugal is about more than just saving money. 

It’s about freedom. It’s about autonomy.

I love being frugal. I love the challenge of living on less and choosing to spend my money wisely, because it means I can live the life I choose to live.

Saving Money

Saving money for its own sake can become tedious, not to mention painful. Am I the only one who sees it as a prolonged exercise in denial and sacrifice?

I don’t know about you, but for me, that type of lifestyle is going to get really old, really quick.

Being frugal and saving money has to be about more than just the money if you’re actually going to love your life and feel satisfaction and enjoyment every single day.

If it isn’t, your commitment to the process is going to be short lived.

Being Frugal

What can you gain by being frugal? Here’s an example of how being frugal helped me choose a different future.

Being frugal (and saving money as a way of life) meant that when the IT contract I’d been working for two years came to an end, I was able to make a choice about what to do next.

I could seek out another contract, which would mean commuting to the city (approx 3 hour round trip) as the work I do is hard to find in my regional home.

Or… because I’d put money away and generally lived very cheaply, if I wanted, I could choose to work on my side business full-time. (Read more about creating a side hustle and why I think everyone needs one here…)

Here’s what I was thinking at the time.

Work another contract:

  • Very long day
  • Timesheets
  • Much longer commute
  • Good income
  • Higher expenses
  • and, those dreaded Timesheets.

Work side business full-time:

  • Autonomy
  • Work from home
  • No timesheets
  • Greater earning potential
  • Schedule my day as I choose.

Self employed?

Working from home?

Enjoying life?

The choice was simple.

It’s been seven and a half years since I made that choice, and while it hasn’t always been plain sailing, there’s not been one single day I’ve regretted my decision to take a risk and live the life I choose.

Realise Your Dream

Being self employed and working from home is something I’d thought about, dreamed about, for many, many years. 

It was always the money, or lack of it, that made it seem like a really risky move. Once I realised I could control how much my lifestyle cost (how much I regularly spent) by being frugal, I realised I could significantly reduce the risk involved in jumping into all the unknowns of self employment. 

That’s when my frugal adventure truly began. 

That’s when I really started saving money

Before that realisation, retirement was something that was so far away I couldn’t feel the benefits of saving for it. 

But this dream of being self employed? I could feel that. It made my heart do a little flutter when I thought about it. It still does.

Without that dream, all those years ago, I’d still be living payday to payday. 

With it, everything changed.

Saving money is always a good thing. Whether or not it’s a hard thing depends on why you’re saving it.

What’s your WHY? What’s the spark that triggered your frugal adventure?

Image: Unsplash & Pixabay

Updated: May, 2020

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Vanessa November 27, 2015 - 2:02 pm

For me it’s being the sole income earner for my household. More than that, I’ve never been interested in most of the “shoulds” like new clothes, makeup, the right place to live blah blah. If I’m happy, I’m happy. Things are great and a part of being happy, but not the critical part.

J July 22, 2015 - 5:29 pm

A good read, as always!

I started organising my finances because I wanted to save money for a house deposit and for retirement as well, but as I go along in this PF journey, I find that the benefits and learning go way beyond money. I know having a bit of savings is a plus but I realised that being content and happy with less makes me feel better.

Diane July 23, 2015 - 3:41 pm

You’re absolutely right! Being content with what you have is a major contributor to happiness.

Saving Sanely July 21, 2015 - 9:14 pm

For me, there are a few things. First and foremost was when I added up all my debts and saw a massive number that seemed impossible to get out from under! It showed me why we were living paycheck to paycheck even with good income. Second was the desire to start a family. Though it’s been harder than expected, when that day does finally come I’d like to be able to stay home as much as possible and saving now and losing all the debt may just make that possible!

Diane July 22, 2015 - 9:03 am

Buying time with your loved ones is the best reason to save money! Being able to stay home with your children is a great motivator. Even reducing your outside work to part-time will make a huge difference to your life. Good luck!!!


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