Six Traits of the Frugal Shopper

A frugal shopper has skills that help him or her gain benefit of the money-saving opportunities in life. Below I have listed several traits found in frugal shoppers.  By incorporating these into your life, you too can become a frugal shopper.

1. A frugal shopper studies other people. There are probably people near you living a good life on half of what you make. Learn how others do things, so you’ll know your options.

2. Frugality requires knowledge of values. It’s hard to get a huge deal on a car if you don’t recognize what a big deal is. Start enlightening yourself on prices, especially before you’re ready to buy anything that costs a lot.

3. Frugal shoppers pay cash. Things are cheaper when paid for in cash instead of credit. Want that new patio set? The cost divided by the number of weeks you can wait to get it equals how much you need to set aside each week. You’ll not only save on interest when you pay cash, but you’ll often get a better price.

4. A frugal shopper looks for alternatives. Maybe you’d have just as much fun taking that discounted trip to the Bahamas as you would going to Jamaica. If you happen to enjoy pizza just as much – or more, skip the expensive restaurant and call Dominoes.

5. Frugal shoppers tell people what they need. Just mention it in conversation. Do you know how many people get free or cheap things, just because they talk?

6. Do the math. You didn’t really save $400 on that car if it costs you $500 more in gas each year. Also, be aware that some stores are cashing in on shopper’s assumptions that larger is cheaper. Yes, the gallon of pickles might cost more than four-quart jars. Be ready to do the math if you want to be a frugal shopper.

Frugal Gifts for the Housekeeper

A frugal gift is measured first by its usefulness. With that in mind, the frugal mind that is, the gift serves two practical purposes; it is useful and saves money. Most frugal women will Below I will explore a couple of ideas for thoughtful, practical-and yes, frugal-gifts.

Fill a sturdy laundry basket with one or two boxes each: Arm and Hammer Washing Soda, 20 Mule Team Borax and a few bars of Fels-Naptha Laundry Bar Soap. Mix up one batch of the following recipe and put in a tightly sealed container. You can make a decorative container yourself from a quart mason jar and some decorative fabric banded over the top or any kind of sealed glass container. Tie with pretty ribbon. And include the following recipe. Place with the laundry detergent ingredients.

Powdered Laundry Detergent

Mix:

1 Cup Grated Fels Naptha Soap

1/2 Cup Washing Soda

1/2 Cup Borax

 Use one Tablespoon per load, or for heavily soiled clothes, use 2 tablespoons.

The frugal person most likely makes her own cleaning solutions and is always looking for cleaning and organizing tips. For a cleaning basket that will be truly appreciated, include a couple of spray bottles, steel wool, a pumice stone, cream of tartar, vinegar, baking soda, gloves, scrub brushes, utility towels or cleaning rags, dusters, cloth diapers (make great cleaning rags), household cleaning and organizing tips book or recycling tips. You might compile a book of homemade cleaning recipes to get her going. An added gift might be a “coupon” booklet offering your services for childcare, pet-sitting, or other amenities so the receiver can get away for a bit and enjoy some relaxation.

Gift baskets are only limited by your imagination. Look around at the things you use most often, thing about your recipient’s lifestyle and take it from there.

A Double-Sided Coin

I have two questions for you. How do you feel about yourself?  How well organized are you?

Notice that if you feel fairly well organized then you probably feel rather good about yourself, i.e. your self-esteem is probably high.

In fact, if you are reading personal development books, listening to audio programs, or attending seminars on personal development and self-esteem, then chances are you’re caught in a circle.

You do some personal development, and you feel better, and you get on with life, but the disorganization of your life catches up with you and so you go back to doing a bunch of personal development.

Self-esteem and personal organization are essentially two sides of the same coin. The coin that opens those gateways to all success. You can focus on either of those sides separately, but in the end, organization depends on self-esteem, and vice versa, self-esteem depends on getting organized in your career development and personal life.

By emotionally getting involved with taking extra control of your personal areas at work and home you will start feeling proud of your surroundings, and ever more competent at getting organized.

Focusing intellectually on how to get organized, and emotionally super-charging that effort for all the positive emotions that come from being organized, will boost your self-esteem. And that provides ever more fuel to get organized even more.

Self-esteem and Getting Organized create a self-supporting positive feedback mechanism. The more you improve on one of them, the more the other will improve.

Your two-pronged attack is to work on both, be mindful of both, understand how they both inter-relate, and ultimately combine as two sides of the same coin. The coin that affords your every desire, and inevitably brings you all that you deserve

A Diabetic Diet for Vegetarians

If you are a vegetarian who has been diagnosed with diabetes, you can still maintain your diabetic diet.  In some cases, a vegetarian diet may be a healthy way to keep your blood glucose levels stable – that is if you are eating lean high-quality proteins and are following other rules for eating as a diabetic. As a lot of vegans and vegetarians eat a larger amount of fruits and vegetables in a day than a non-vegetarian and their fiber intake is much higher too.  An increased amount of fiber in a diabetic’s diet can help blood sugars because it slows down the process of the body digesting carbohydrates.  A vegetarian’s diet is usually lower in cholesterol as well and it can help ward off cardiovascular disease including heart attacks and strokes.

If you are diabetic and are considering a switch to a diabetic diet some of the benefits you might derive include a higher rate of weight loss and better blood sugar readings.  This is dependent on the types of vegetarian meals you choose as some meatless meals can be just as fattening as ones that contain meat.

Speak to your doctor and dietician before making the switch.  You will need information on how to transition yourself to your new diet.  You will also get a list of meat alternatives you should eat in order to get enough protein in a day.  These can include tofu, nuts, eggs, and seeds.

As with any change, once your switch to a vegetarian diet give yourself and your body time to adjust.  There are many recipes and ideas for vegetarian dishes, and you will find a lot of variety and flexibility in the meals that you prepare.  Check your blood sugars frequently to make sure your blood glucose levels remain stable during the change.

“Who’s the Boss?” 10 Ways to Start Taking Control (Time Management, Goal Setting, Record Tracking)

At first glance, positive thinking, and time management and goal setting have nothing to do with one another. But many of us develop negative thinking patterns because we become frustrated by our challenges and frequent feelings of being overwhelmed. This negative outlook then makes it even harder for us to manage those challenges and move forward.

Practicing positive thinking allows people to focus on our strengths and accomplishments, which increases happiness and motivation. This, in turn, allows us to spend more time making progress, and less time feeling down and stuck. The following tips provide practical suggestions that you can use to help you shift into more positive thinking patterns:

1. Take Good Care of Yourself

It’s much easier to be positive when you are eating well, exercising, and getting enough rest.

2. Remind Yourself of the Things You Are Grateful For

Stresses and challenges don’t seem quite as bad when you are constantly reminding yourself of the things that are right in life. Taking just 60 seconds a day to stop and appreciate the good things will make a huge difference.

3. Look for the Proof Instead of Making Assumptions

A fear of not being liked or accepted sometimes leads us to assume that we know what others are thinking, but our fears are usually not reality. If you have a fear that a friend or family member’s bad mood is due to something you did, or that your co-workers are secretly gossiping about you when you turn your back, speak up and ask them. Don’t waste time worrying that you did something wrong unless you have proof that there is something to worry about.

4. Refrain from Using Absolutes

Have you ever told a partner “You’re ALWAYS late!” or complained to a friend “You NEVER call me!”? Thinking and speaking in absolutes like ‘always’ and ‘never’ makes the situation seem worse than it is, and programs your brain into believing that certain people are incapable of delivering.

5. Detach From Negative Thoughts

Your thoughts can’t hold any power over you if you don’t judge them. If you notice yourself having a negative thought, detach from it, witness it, and don’t follow it.

6. Squash the “ANTs”

In his book “Change Your Brain, Change Your Life,” Dr. Daniel Amen talks about “ANTs” – Automatic Negative Thoughts. These are the bad thoughts that are usually reactionary, like “Those people are laughing, they must be talking about me,” or “The boss wants to see me? It must be bad!” When you notice these thoughts, realize that they are nothing more than ANTs and squash them!

7. Practice Lovin’, Touchin’ & Squeezin’ (Your Friends and Family)

You don’t have to be an expert to know the benefits of a good hug. Positive physical contact with friends, loved ones, and even pets, is an instant pick-me-up. One research study on this subject had a waitress touch some of her customers on the arm as she handed them their checks. She received higher tips from these customers than from the ones she didn’t touch!

8. Increase Your Social Activity

By increasing social activity, you decrease loneliness. Surround yourself with healthy, happy people, and their positive energy will affect you in a positive way!

9. Volunteer for an Organization, or Help another Person

Everyone feels good after helping. You can volunteer your time, your money, or your resources. The more positive energy you put out into the world, the more you will receive in return.

10. Use Pattern Interrupts to Combat Rumination

If you find yourself ruminating, a great way to stop it is to interrupt the pattern and force yourself to do something completely different. Rumination is like hyper-focus on something negative. It’s never productive, because it’s not rational or solution-oriented, it’s just excessive worry. Try changing your physical environment – go for a walk or sit outside. You could also call a friend, pick up a book, or turn on some music.

To know the things needed to do are the basics of productivity, but interaction and having a steady mind makes up the entire thing to true productivity. There are those who seem to work well even under pressure, but they’re uncommon ones and we are human and imperfect. To get these little things like stress under our skins won’t solve our problems. Sometimes it takes a bit of courage to admit that we’re turning to be workaholics than tell ourselves that we’re not doing our best.

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