7 Simple Ways To Successfully Complete No Spend Month Challenge

So, you too are interested in trying the no spend month challenge? Good for you as I’ve tried this one-month challenge and it has completely changed my life. While the “no spend month” has an exciting ring to it, not many continue this challenge till the end.

In this post, I’ll share the 7 simple ways you can successfully complete a no spend month. I have kept the list precise and up to the point. Hence, these 7 ways are more than enough for you if you want to complete a no spend month challenge. I have also included the mistakes and benefits of completing the no spend month challenge.

Ready? Let’s gooo…..

(1) Set Realistic Goals

Setting a goal should be your first task before starting No Spend Month. Without a goal, you’ll falter one day or the other. Asking yourself questions such as why do I want to do this challenge? helps you a lot. What is your goal? Why are your so desperate to complete the no spend month challenge? How will it help you?

Give yourself some time if you’re having a hard time thinking about your goals. Contemplate. Observe your life and decide what’s the one thing that can improve in your life with the no spend month. Most people want to do the no spend challenge to stop overspending and improve their financial situation. But even if you’re financially stable, you can do the challenge and keep your spending in control.

I regularly do the no spend month and my most of the time my goal is this: Spend only when it’s absolutely necessary. Yeah, it may seem lame, but it has worked wonders for me. This challenge have improved my eating habits (I’ve almost quit sugar), sleeping habits, improved my financial situation drastically, and above all, my body is healthier than before.

Nice! I hope you have got it… But please keep one thing in mind. Most people, including me, have made this mistake of overburdening with too many goals. Trust me, it won’t work if you have too many goals. Your mind will get overwhelmed and force you to quit soon. So, instead of focusing on everything at once and cutting everything out, focus on those little changes.

(2) Create Budgeting List

I cannot explain how much creating a budgeting list have helped me. Initially, while you’re all fired up, you’ll remember every little expense, but with time you’ll forget to note them down. That’s where a budgeting app comes in. Goodbudget is one of the best budgeting app that comes with both free and paid plan.

Or, if you want to go the old-school way, buy a notebook and note down every little transaction. Compare your present expenses with your target and you’ll know how well you’re doing.

Budgeting is crucial if you want to complete the no spend month challenge. Without that, there’s a high chance you’ll miss out on the details.

(3) Be Vocal

Being vocal is a personal choice. Either you can be vocal about the no spend month or you can just keep it to yourself. But, I have personally felt that if you speak about something loud enough it has a powerful impact in your brain. You don’t have to yell, only loud enough to be audible to yourself. Yes, you’re free to share this with other people, how they will respond to it is another story.

In the book The Success Principles, Jack Canfield has talked about how he was vocal about his goals. He was damn sure that one day he would meet his goals, and that’s exactly what happened. Honestly, I cannot recall at this point whether he met all his goals, but he sure met most of them.

I tried to be vocal few years ago about something I was trying to manifest, it created wonders. Hence, you can be verbally vocal that you’re practicing no spend month, or you can be silent and repeat it mentally whenever possible.

(4) Fight Compulsion

Do you know the first sign of a successful no spend month? You’ll get a rush of compulsive thoughts outta nowhere. You’ll suddenly feel the need to spend some money watching movies, buying clothes, or anything that you love to spend on. You can only do two things when this happens. Fight it or let it be until it recedes!

My personal experience says that it’s a bad idea to fight a compulsion. It’s hit you harder and force you to break your streak. On the other hand, if you simply observe those intrusive thoughts and let it be, it will eventually stop disturbing you.

Impulsive buying is another sneaky problem you’ll face. You’re in a mall and you suddenly find a beautiful dress at 90% discount. Your mind will try its best to overwhelm with thoughts like it’s a one-time deal, this opportunity won’t ever come, it’s okay if I spend only a little extra. Trust me when I say this… If you spend even one extra dime today, there’s a high chance you’ll repeat it.

Fight it! Carve it into your mind that no matter what happens you won’t spend on something that’s not necessary. Having this mentality will empower you and help you succeed faster.

(5) Keep Yourself Occupied

An idle mind is a devil’s workshop. This quote fits perfectly here. Most negative thoughts arise when you’re idle and have nothing to do. Please don’t confuse meditation with an idle mind. Meditation is a completely different thing. Anyway, moving forward, if you keep yourself occupied with something, your mind won’t get the time to think anything negative. It simply won’t have the time.

Keeping yourself busy is essential, especially when you’re trying something out of your comfort zone. Since the no spend month challenge is all about restricting yourself to spend money, you’re bound to develop negative thoughts, and that would lead you to relapse.

Few years ago I watched a video about a farmer’s life. There was nothing particularly interesting, but just sentence changed my view on how people perceive their life. Upon asked by the interviewer whether they felt depressed when they fail to harvest enough crops, their answer was: We don’t have the time to get depressed.

And this is true. A person who has nothing to do is more sad than a person who is occupied. Maybe that’s why people die after few years once they retire from their job.

Enough philosophy! You can convert your bad spending habits into something that is actually good for you. Create a hobby, read books, journal your thoughts, meditate, learn to draw, etc. You can transform yourself from a spendthrift to a person who you’re actually proud of.

(6) Try DIY

Decreasing waste is also a good way of saving money and using them to your benefits. You don’t have to go overboard and turn everything into DIY, but you can try to fix, build and create things on your own.

It’s one of the oldest and the best way to save money. That way, you can also discover new skills which can help you in making more money. It’s better if you transform your DIY skills into hobby, and then, if possible, into a business.

The Japanese are experts in DIY. They know which things are good for them and which aren’t.

(7) Stop Revenge Spending

A strong feeling engulfs you when you have spend a long time doing the no spend month. As you can already make out by the name, revenge spending is making up for the time you stopped yourself from over-spending. Revenge Spending is dangerous. It can convince you to spend more than your finances can handle.

You need to understand that revenge spending is nothing by a temporary relief you get through uncontrolled spending. And since this is just a temporary relief, revenge spending often leads to bad financial decisions which dents your savings and budgeting plans.

We saw revenge spending after the worldwide event in 2020. People went for revenge spending when rules were relaxed. This didn’t hurt in short term, but in long term.

Benefits Of No Spend Month

The no spend month is hard to follow, especially because it’s a grueling one-month challenge. These are the benefits of following a no spend month

  1. Teaches you to live in adverse financial situations.
  2. You get a chance to reduce debt and save more.
  3. Financial discipline is now in your DNA.

These three are the root benefits of doing a no spend month. The beauty of this challenge is that you can learn more with your personal experience.

Do let me know what did you learn after doing one no spend month. Did you feel anything different? How did it change your life? I would love to hear from you…

No Spend Month Mistakes You Should Avoid

Mistakes happen when something is hard and needs continuous patience. These are some of the no spend month mistakes you should avoid at all cost. And you know what? Most of these mistakes are sneaky. You would have broken the streak and won’t even know about it.

Mistake 1: Doing Everything At Once

Trying to do everything at once is the sure-shot way to get burnt-out. Surprisingly, this is also valid to almost everything in our life. Even if you ate your favorite food too much at once, your body won’t handle it.

Take baby steps. Increase your goal only when you have successfully completed one. Taking on too many goals at a time can mess up your mind. Usually, the next decision after this is breaking the streak.

Mistake 2: Giving Up Too Early

It takes time to move a big ship. Your life is a big ship that moves slowly. You cannot expect it to move like a paper boat. Trust the process. Know that if no spend month challenge has worked for someone else, it WILL work for you too.

Your only job is to trust the process and go onto doing it anyway. Enjoy the journey, and you’ll reach the destination before you know it. The majority of people develop a strong tendency to give up twice in their journey: once when they are starting it, and the final one is when they are close to the end.

Congratulations if you have made it through the first one, now that you know, it’s your task to not falter when the journey is nearing its end.

Mistake 3: Not Tracking Progress

You’ll be making a blunder if you don’t track your daily progress. It’s quite easy to track it nowadays with all the technology we have. You can either use a budgeting app, as I’ve mentioned before, or go the old-school way and use pen and paper, which is error-prone and consumes too many resources.

Among the four, not tracking progress is the number one mistake most people make. Well, now that you know, I hope you won’t jump in the bandwagon…

Mistake 4: Not Rewarding Yourself

It might seem simple, but you should reward yourself for your success. Yes, it might feel childlike, but it can have a significant positive impact on your self-esteem. This concept goes back to our childhood when we were rewarded for doing well at something.

Rewarding yourself doesn’t necessarily mean offering physical gifts, but rather gifts in the form of encouragement or a small holiday. I hope you get the idea…

Finally, I wish you only the best. I want you to succeed and excel at every challenge the world throws at you. Stay hungry. Stay foolish.