Seasonal Frugality, In the year 2015 I met a lady. Please calm down, it’s not a story about Her Royal Sweetness today. Lol. So this lady who we will call Sister R was a very beautiful young woman and she’s quite intelligent too.
So one day we got talking, and she said something that thunderbolted into my heart. I never knew that since we met she has been observing me; how I live, how I spend money, the people I associate with, etc. But of most importance is the way I spend money.
You see, don’t blame me; back then I wasn’t married and everyone assumed that the single brothers have no ‘responsibility’ as such they should always have money to spread around. This always baffled me. So a man will go and do yoga with his wife, a child will come forth out of the entanglement and Bro Prince the single guy will have to spend his money on a venture he has no stake or say in?
Anyway, as the good brother that I was, I kept spending. Like every issue gets my attention. I had spent a year without any major investment, acquired assets or even saved up money. I just couldn’t understand it.
So back to Sister R. The day we got talking, a spell fell off my eyes. Not the ‘babalawo’ kinda spell sha o. In her words “you have to be frugal with your money”. Now, don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t my first time to hear the word ‘frugal’, it is just that that word had never made real sense to me.
It occurred to me there and then that I have only been practicing ‘seasonal frugality’. So what exactly does ‘seasonal frugality’ mean? It is planning for money after it arrives and after we have almost exhausted it on things that do not have value.
It then makes sense that frugality is spending with caution and a mix of salt whatever income you receive. It is a conscious effort to plan and prepare for every funds received to allow for an execution template when the monies arrive.
It is true that every time you do not plan for your monies, others people would certainly plan the distribution of such monies for you. This mentality will help you create an arrangement where unnecessary expenses are cut off, and every expense that cannot fit into your budget is either expunged totally or moved to the next month (or income season).
In Engineering design, there is what they call “tolerance level”. This means that, for every product you intend to create, you must create a sort of allowance, positive and negative, to allow for all possible conditions when the product is put into actual use. This is also applicable to the financial parlance. Frugality also means, you create an allowance for every budget. Understanding that, there are some possibilities you cannot predict that may happen.
Wow. So now you start cutting expenses. You minimize on basically everything. Now you prioritize. You only realized that you don’t need some new shoes; the ones you bought two months ago are still there. At this point, you are simply practicing frugality, because you know not doing so will ruin your finances aground.
But the question however is, why do we not practice frugality at the very beginning? Why wait until when we have almost exhausted our income before applying commonsense to our spending? Why the “mercy after death approach” to our finances thereby resulting in seasonal frugality?
My friend, from that day Sister R mentioned it, I made a decision that I will intentionally plan how my monies will be spent. No more seasonal frugality. I must be intentional about it. Failure to plan your expenses by yourself will gift other people and situations the opportunity to help you decide how your income will be spent.
Creating a budget will help you avoid seasonal frugality; that way you will know how each kobo is to be spent. Never wait for the money to come in before you create a budget. The budget MUST enter through the door before the money does.
The act of frugality is not synonymous with miserly living neither is it the same as extreme savings. It is being less wasteful and more resourceful. Evenly distributing your resources and still creating an allowance for eventualities and knowing when to say NO to some demands.
The Bible puts it this way:
“If one of you is planning to build a tower, you sit down first and figure out what it will cost, to see if you have enough money to finish the job.” Luke 14:28 (MSG)
So my friend, always remember what Sister R told me: “Be frugal with your money”!
God bless you exclusively. This week, the God of Heaven will wipe all your tears away and give you songs of rejoicing in Jesus name. Amen.
Just to remind you that, I am sincerely rooting for you! The top is where you belong and that journey starts now!
I call you blessed. And guess what? I love you, and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it.
Written by Prince Alegeh