A frugal attitude is needed in booming, recessionary, inflationary, and deflationary times. Booming economic times affords us to set aside some disposable income as a hedge for leaner times. Setting aside a reserve will help individuals and businesses, with uneven cash flows due to seasonable income/revenue fluctuations. A truism states, ‘the best time to get a job is when you have a job’. This analogy holds true for savings as well. We must remember that economies run in cycles.

Well, how can an ordinary individual, who is living paycheck-to-paycheck save precious dollars? This is not a budgetary exercise. It’s more of observations of your daily impulsive spending or habits..  Let me give you some examples, show you how to resolve them, and their potential savings. It’s amazing what numbers tell you.

Habit – Buy 3 cups of Joe a day from a local coffee shop. It can cost an average of $4.00 a cup X 3 cups a day = $12.00 each day on coffee. Five days a week that’s $60.00. Four weeks a month that’s $240.00. Wow, that could be a partial or entire car payment, toward rent/mortgage or pay down debt.

Solution – You can have instant coffee, but you like the real perk taste and smell. I understand. You can have fresh brewed coffee by using coffee bags (like tea bags). Many well known coffee manufacturers have them available.  All you need is hot water.  One manufacturer has a box of 19 bags for about $9.00.  That’s about $.50 per cup of coffee X 3/day = $1.50 each day. Five days a week that’s $7.50. Four weeks a month that’s $30.00 a month. Which would you rather pay $12.00 or $1.50 per day?  Even using a box of 19 bags a week for the month comes to $36.00.  Which would you rather pay $240.00 or $36.00 a month? Still looks like it’s a no-brainer.


  1. The average cost to buy a cup of coffee at a local coffee shop is $4.00. The savings could be more if the price of a cup of coffee is higher.
  2. The number of cups of coffee consumed every day of 3. Less cups a day result in higher savings.
  3.  The cost of coffee bags fluctuate per supply and demand. Higher cost/bag less savings.

Habit – The same can be true for that bagel or breakfast sandwich in the morning. Buy bagels at bakery department of grocery store.

Habit – The same can be true for cigarettes. Use nicotine patches and save a lot of money on those packs or cartons of cigarettes.

These are only a few examples that can save many dollars a month.

How many habits can you find, in your lifestyle that you do automatically that can save you $$$$?