How the First Month of No Spending Went

The first month of our Year of No Spending was quite the challenge. It was hard, especially on stressful days. It made me clue in that I sometimes use shopping to fill a void, if it’s just little things like food or magazines. I found out I am more likely to order something in when I’m tired or stressed rather than get in the kitchen. However, doing this at the same time as my cleanse made it much easier. There’s very few things I can eat out, and only one delivers. So if I want to order something it, it is usually something that would break the cleanse. Knowing that I’m breaking two promises I’ve made to myself is a lot harder than making an excuse for one.

So, for our first month I would say we did pretty well! Here’s the run down…

  • We each crossed something off our approved list – white shirt for me, denim for him (both secondhand).
  • I had lunch out once because all the running around I had to do one day took to long, and I started getting low blood sugar (which leads to anxiety for me). I kept it as cheap as possible by building a healthy and nutritious salad from Community for like $4. I’m also now obsessed with artichokes.
  • We had coffee once BUT it was because the power at Rosso went out and they couldn’t process our gift card.
  • We had dinner once while we were on a road trip… we went to Athabasca Falls, thinking it was close to Lake Louise. WRONG. So, we had dinner at the Fairmont since they have high quality food that could accommodate my cleanse, and kept it to only the meal, no drinks or treats.
  • I had an unexpected business expense that set me back quite a bit, which caused a lot of anxiety for me.

I’ve also decided there’s two things I want to add to my Approved Spending List – a hat by Janessa Leone, and a bun pin by CA Makes. The hat will replace two that don’t quite fit me properly, and the bun pin will replace all the ponytails I just end up losing anyways. The bun pin is also way prettier, won’t damage my hair, and I’ll be able to get it at Fieldstudy (hurray for supporting local!)

Overall, we did much better than I expected. I also realized that I need to breathe a little – life happens, and sometimes doesn’t go according to plan. I had planned to start on my tattoo in September, but had a huge contract fall through that the last moment so need to postpone. There were lots of moments of anxiety that comes with breaking ingrained habits, but it’s been worth it. I’m feeling a little more secure, and MUCH more creative, especially with cooking. Since I can’t order out when I’m not feeling up to cooking, I’ve got five minute bowls down to a science. Here’s hoping this experiment gets easier each month…


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  • I love following along with your no spend journey. My anxiety is also triggered by low blood sugar (and about a thousand other things 🙄) and I always end up buying food while I’m out because of it. You’d think that by age 32 I would know better and keep snacks with me.

    One thing that I’ve learned through my anxiety nightmare is sometimes things don’t go to plan and that’s ok. I think you’re doing great!

    • Thank You! I appreciate you following along. Haha, I also haven’t quite learned to keep snacks, but I have learned where to get healthy ones quickly – Community is always a safe bet, but even places like Shoppers have raw nuts and organic chocolate.

      That is such an important thing to learn, and so true. I think you’re doing pretty great yourself – I know it takes strength to reach out, comment, and share, and I think it’s so awesome that you do!