woman holding two paper bags with moneySarah Kaye is a popular and inspiring member of our large – and growing – Living Financially Smarter in Israel Facebook group.

After member Tzipora Juarez posted this yerdle video https://yerdle.com/unshopping , Sarah declared July to be “unshopping” month and has been giving us her honest and at times very humorous updates. The challenge is to buy no stuff for one month. Necessities such as food, gas, electricity, etc are of course allowed. The idea is to lighten the credit card bill, balance the budget better, and raise spending awareness.

Since many of us having been trying to keep up with the “unshopping” challenge, to varying degrees I thought I would offer some tips for making it a successful experience at whatever level you decide to take this on:

1. Don’t tempt yourself.

Group deal websites, trips to the mall, window shopping, and internet shopping are all traps for temptation to buy ‘stuff’. It is so easy to buy, that if you want this to work avoid the temptation. Don’t walk to your destination through that large superpharm.

2. Spend time doing other things.

Work is a great distraction from shopping, as is family time at home or a park rather than the mall. Even cleaning out your home is a good alternative; You’ll discover all the “stuff” you already have.

3. Leave your membership cards at home.

If you have membership cards to stores that give you discounts, leave them at home. That way if you do pass the store you are less likely to buy. If that won’t stop you, leave the credit card at home.

4. Kids

It is hard to say no to ourselves, and even harder for our kids. On day one of the challenge I told my 2nd grader I was doing this. I said “Please don’t ask for any stuff this month. I am doing a game with my Facebook group and some clients. We are not buying any “stuff” for the entire month.”
She replied: “Ooooof this is the worst month of my entire life.”
It truly has not affected her life, but it is sentiments like these that while adorable require that we find that backbone and not give in.

5. One month.

Remember:- It is just a month, it is about increasing your spending awareness, not about making yourself miserable. Don’t be tempted to write down a list of items to buy for August; If you really need the item, you’ll remember in August.

It is just ONE month, with only 15 days to go, you can do this!!!!

Rifka