Hi, I (24F) live with my Fiancé (30M). We both are in an apprenticeship and live in Germany. We don’t earn much (400€+470€) and live in a social flat (370€ rent). We pay electricity and water monthly. He pays the rent and utilities and I pay for everything else. I rarely buy/eat meat and the environment is really important to me. I try to incorporate that as much in my shopping as I can but it shows financially. I’m also fighting depression (I have medical care/a therapist) and I tend to be impulsive with buying stuff when I’m feeling horrible (cake, clothes, sweets etc.) Even though I don’t need it/ it does make me feel more guilty. I never really learned how to handle money in the first place and I’m really struggling to control my impulses. I do the grocery shopping because I also cook and I commute to my school while my boyfriend works Homeoffice. Where can I start? Does someone have similar problems? I really need help
The best way to support the environment is not buying anything. You have to understand the irony behind buying “environmentally friendly products”. Just buy what you can afford.
Don’t buy biodegradable paper towels, just use a rag. etc.
You have a shopping addiction. Environmentally friendly products is just giving you another excuse to shop.
The easiest way to stop is to start getting gratification from saving money instead of spending it. Get excited about how big your savings account is. Get excited about the returns you earn on an investment. Be proud of your contributions to the environment by how little you buy, not by how much you buy. Be proud that you are able to build a whole wardrobe out of 10 pieces of clothes or that you could make a whole weeks of meals for $50, instead of eating cake when its not your birthday.
Its not as instantly gratifying as buying stuff on the internet, but its a lot more solidified and long lived. Having a big savings account is something you can always be proud of. Buying some cute stuffed animal will only give you temporary pleasure which will quickly go away once you realize you have nothing in your bank account.
The easiest way to not overspend is to not have the money on hand to spend it with. When money comes in, put away what you want to save immediately into an account you don’t have easy access to. Pay your fixed bills immediately. Take whatever spending allowance you want to give yourself in paper currency. Lock up your debit/credit cards somewhere so you can’t spend on them, and you are forced to stick to a budget. When you run out, you are out.
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