The Top 5 Game Plan
As almost always, I took a topic of conversation to Instagram and chatted with you guys about our shopping AND spending habits. I asked so many of you guys questions on everything from how often you shop per month to how much you are likely to spend within 30 days to if you budget shopping money in advance. The verdict? Well, for the majority of us, we don’t really budget our "Treat yourself” purchases. We have an idea in our mind of when we know we are going overboard, but most of us don’t have a set balance of how wild we can get for one month.
A few of you, however, have it on lock. Which, I seriously admired. With a blog, the expenses can get high and I am still learning to manage when to spend my money on it and where that money should go. 9 times out of 10? It goes into blog content and making sure that if I have a style post coming up that is compiled of mainly clickable items for you guys to shop. This, of course, is more of a business expense than a personal one. However, those lines can get blurred pretty quick. At the point of purchase, I will find myself asking: “What’s the purpose behind this? Is it for me, me? Or is it for blog content and me?” In this instance, it’s okay for the lines between personal and professional to essentially not exist. This also looks different on a monthly basis, depending on the content I have planned and if I have any collaborations that month.
But, let's be real: no one needs THAT many clothes. Seriously. I am a consumer, I’ll admit it. But, I work really hard to make sure I don’t get categorized under "Wasteful Shopper" (Note: this is a constant work in process). Here’s where I find that having a mini strategy every month really helps. This is super similar to what I wrote in my post on shopping for seasonal trends, but on a more short term basis: I create a list of 5 items I am lusting when a month begins. By doing that I have already weeded out the endless “Omg, wait. That’s so cute. Should I get it?” type of purchases that, I promise you, I do not need. I call it the Top 5. A list of 5 items that you would like to add to your closet for that month: shoes, clothing, accessories, jewelry etc. You can make it look any way you want because it's really going to be a reflection of what you are going to be spending your “Fun” money on throughout the month.
This is not going to solve our budget-less spending problems, guys. But, I really believe it helps in building a system for yourself. More than anything, it helps in managing the dialogue in my head when I am computer screen shopping (or at a store) and see something I am lusting over: “This isn’t in my Top 5 of the month. Should I switch it out with another item on the list or should I say pass?”. My Top 5 could be your Top 2, Top 10, Top Whatever. It’s solely up to you, your interests and your shopping/spending habit aspirations. In the end, so many factors come into your spending decisions, but this will help in answering many smart shopper's question “How do I want my closet to look this month, both stylistically and financially?"