In today’s blog post, ‘How To Avoid Lifestyle Creep’. I share 12 different ways for you to avoid lifestyle creep. Applying just a few of these tips will really help you reduce your lifestyle inflation.
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If your employer was to come to you today and tell you that they’re going to give you a pay rise of £200 a month, what would you do with all that extra money?
In today’s blog post, I’ll be sharing 12 things that you can do to help you avoid lifestyle creep.
Lifestyle creep is the idea that now I earn more money I can spend more money. Your cost of living increases in line with your income increase. I really want to help you to avoid falling into this trap. So that as your income rises, you’re able to have money of your money to put towards your future financial goals. Whether that’s saving money, investing or paying off debt, by the end of this article, you’ll be equipped with all the tools you need to ensure you’re not spending all of your money.
There are so many ways that you can avoid lifestyle creep, 12 of which I’ll now outline below. If you can think of any additional helpful tips, please share them in the comments section at the end of this article.
If your boss has told you you’re getting a pay rise at the end of the month, or your business is doing very well, then, of course, you should reward yourself. But do it in moderation. Maybe take the first month’s pay to splash out on that thing you’ve always wanted to buy. Then after that, you can decide on a percentage of that raise to put towards your financial goals and the balance will be yours to spend as you wish.
Set yourself clear financial goals and track them on a regular basis. As the saying goes the Devil makes work for idle hands, so if you haven’t given your money a job to do, that money is just going to go missing. Set yourself some financial goals and it would be much more difficult for your lifestyle to creep. A lot of the poor financial choices we make are because we lack focus and clarity of our financial goals and what we actually want to do with our money.
It was only a matter of time before I mentioned the ‘B’ word, but that’s because I truly believe that a budget will really help you manage your money effectively. If you have a budget and a plan for your money in place, there is less room for you to fall for lifestyle creep.
If you’re new to budgeting and don’t have a planner or tracker in place, then download my budget planner and expenses tracker to help you get started.
You can also check out this video where I do a full budget planner walkthrough and show you how to use this planner in real life.
Another great thing that you can do to avoid lifestyle creep is to increase your pension contributions. At the moment, are you matching your employer contribution, or are you doing the bare minimum? Or have you opted out altogether when it comes to pension schemes? If you are not making maximum pension contributions, or at least matching your employer’s contribution, then it’s definitely worth doing so with this increased income. Save a percentage of this extra income in your pension pot, and your future self is really going to that you for it.
Automate your savings and investments. Take the power out of your own hands and you’re more likely to avoid lifestyle creep. If investing is something you’ve always wanted to do, but up until this point you didn’t have that extra money, now this pay rise has come around, take that extra money and let it help you make more money.
Investing is a big topic to discuss so I won’t cover it all in this post, however, if you’re want to get started investing in individual stocks and ETF’s, then you can get started with FreeTrade. It’s an award-winning instant online stock trading app, and if you sign up using my referral link, you and I receive a free share worth between £2 and £300. Sign-up here.
Something I say a lot on my Instagram is, just because it’s within your means, doesn’t mean you have to buy it. This is a mistake many of us often make. We see other people inflating their lifestyles around us, so we think we need to do the same – you don’t.
Another great way to avoid lifestyle creep is to journal daily. And when I say journal daily, I specifically mean gratitude journaling. Every day, write down everything that you are grateful for in your life. If you do this daily for a few weeks, it’ll make you more content with what you have and you’ll start to realise that actually you have a lot of great things going for you and you don’t need to buy as much as you think you do. If you’re not happy with where you are now, you’re not going to be happy with where you go and what you get.
Iron sharpens iron. If you surround yourself with spenders, guess what that will make you?.. A spender. I’m not suggesting you go ahead and throw away your friends, however, I am saying find yourself some more friends. People that don’t encourage you to spend all your money, people that find ways to enjoy life without spending all they earn.
Unfollow your favourite brands and influencers on Instagram that are encouraging you to spend all your money. If you can’t bring yourself to unfollow them, then perhaps just mute them for a period of time so that you’re not constantly being tempted to spend.
Following on from the last point, in addition to unfollowing and muting certain accounts, you also want to unsubscribe from their mailing lists as well for the same reason.
Yes, this seems a bit extreme, but you know your own triggers. If those notifications you receive from your favourite apps make you want to spend, spend spend, then delete, delete, delete. You get to control the content you consume.
Having a clear vision of what you’re trying to achieve and where you’re trying to go, you’re less likely to fall for the low hanging. Where do you see yourself a year from now? two years from now? 3 years now? Putting this picture in black and white on a vision board is really going to help you reach your financial goals.
So these are just 12 ways for you to avoid lifestyle creep, let me know if you have any other suggestions of ways to avoid lifestyle creep in the comments section below.
If you enjoyed this post, ’How To Avoid Lifestyle Creep’ then you will also enjoy my other blog posts on similar topics. Check them out below:
Wife and mum of three boys on a journey to achieve financial freedom. Earn more, spend less and invest the difference.