Living More Mindfully and Reducing Living Expenses

Felicia Atkinson

Creative ways to save money.

When you’re younger, you don’t have to worry about living expenses. It’s easy to take things such as water and food for granted when you’re not paying for it and it’s accessible to you.

Most people don’t truly realize how expensive it is to live until they’ve moved out and they’re on their own. Keeping the water bill low and the grocery expenses to a reasonable amount each month is a more difficult task than it may seem like.

Disclaimer: The resources and information shared in this article are solely for entertainment purposes and aren’t intended to provide any professional advice.

Reconsider your gym membership

For years, I had a gym membership to my local gym. It wasn’t anything fancy, but it was a pretty large gym with weights, barbells, two basketball courts, a swimming pool, as well as a range of classes you could take.

It was nice to have growing up, as I practiced basketball there almost daily during my younger years. However, I'm no longer a college athlete and I realized that I didn't need a gym membership anymore. I prefer running outside and it doesn't cost me a penny.

I no longer have a gym membership because I’ll either run outside, take a stroll on the bike path, or use some free weights that I own. A gym membership may seem like a minor cost, but depending on the gym you go to, it can get pretty expensive.

And it’s not just the membership itself you’re paying for — you’ll also be paying for gas to get to the gym. If you live 20 minutes away from your gym, that’s an additional cost you have to consider.

Consider shopping at a more affordable grocery store

Something I was a bit shocked about was how outrageously expensive some grocery stores can be. You’re buying the same foods, however, some stores raise the prices on certain foods.

This is why I’ve scouted out the affordable grocery stores where I live, and I steer clear of the ones where the prices aren’t so great. By doing so, I’ve been able to save some money groceries.

My typical grocery haul consists of sweet potatoes, hummus, frozen broccoli, frozen corn, frozen blueberries, pasta, zucchini, apples, tortillas, and so on. The foods I buy do tend to be on the cheaper end, so you can easily save money by buying foods that are on sale and typically cheaper.

Consider budgeting restaurant outings

You’re young, and want to have fun and socialize with your peers — and there’s nothing wrong with that.

If you’re thinking about your future and your life 5 or even 10 years from now, then you may want to start saving now and be more mindful of your spending habits.

Something that costs a lot of money is food and drinks. Rather than eating out and getting a coffee every morning before work, I make my own food and coffee at home.

You can enjoy going out from time to time, but in addition to your typical grocery expenses, you don’t necessarily want to be spending even more money on eating out each week.

Something else you can consider is trying to do more free things. There are other ways to socialize, including getting together for a workout or having a movie night at home. Every activity you do doesn’t have to cost you money.

There’s no doubt that the cost of living is expensive. Of course there are cheaper areas to live in than others, however, there are some expenses you can’t get out of such as rent, utilities, groceries, gas, and so on.

With that being said, it doesn’t mean that you can’t live a more minimalist life and save cash on things you don’t really need. Doing something as simple as quitting your gym membership, choosing a specific grocery store to shop at, limiting your food and drink outings, and not splurging on luxurious items are some simple ways you can greatly reduce your cost of living.

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I'm an avid runner and a passionate vegan. I enjoy writing about food, work, productivity, health, fitness, and more!

Raleigh, NC

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