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It puzzles me how strange we are about money. I would agonize about which brand of beans to buy and yet think nothing of putting £50 into a machine which gives me nothing.

One thing I do know is that money brings up feelings and feelings are not good things to act on. My main feeling around money is one of guilt. Here’s an example. I didn’t have a holiday for 10 years – so I decided to go out walking instead. Free right. After a while I decided to do part of the trans-pennine trail, a long distance walk that passes nearby. You’re a Yorkshire lass – so you’ll know it. That was fine for the first few days / weeks. Then as I got further into it I had to drive to start points – I remember the agony of that … something like “I can’t just drive out for a walk!” Eventually, of course, I got to a point where it made more sense to stay overnight somewhere than to drive there and back a few times. So my first holiday was the other side of Doncaster in a motel with paper-thin walls and no breakfast. And I still thought, “I SHOULDN’T BE DOING THIS.”

Yes there were money worries at the time and I was feeling it was wrong not to put every last penny into paying debts off – but I also (with my thinking head on) knew that £30 was not going to make a lot of difference – and I needed to change my life in some small way … the way I wanted it to go.

So it could be that the feelings you get around money are a trigger for you. Time perhaps to take deep breaths and break away until you can think clearly about what you need (in terms of the shop) and if you can really afford the wants (those extras that make life worthwhile – you still deserve them!)

Whilst I’m here – can I just say it is not useful to think in terms of always and never. “I’ll never go on holiday / I’ll never get a new car.” You don’t know that and it will bring you down to dwell on those things. There may be ways in which you could blag free holidays. My friend goes dog sitting and gets at least one or two free stays a year looking after mutts. Or you could (if you have the energy) look into working holidays – where you do some work to pay for your board and lodgings somewhere.
But I guess my idea of a holiday might be different from yours! 🙂