This past week was one of the most typical weeks I have had in quite some time. Not much out of the ordinary happened this week. The mundane week really allowed me to reflect on my spending and after analyzing at my credit card purchases this week I have realized two things about this journey.
Total Spending – $126.43
- $12.81 – Hulu
- $8.35 – Chipotle
- $7.53 – Chick-fil-a
- $13.99 – Baba India
- $27.42 – Gas
- $9.21 – Kroger
- $47.12 – Dinner and drinks with friends
Meal: Cheesy Penne with Zucchini, Corn and Basil
- Total cost: $9.21
- Cost per meal: $3.07
The first thing I noticed about my spending for this week was my grocery bill compared to how much a meal costs to eat out. For this week, I went to the store and only picked up items I would need to create the penne pasta dish. I spent less than $10 on this one trip but it yielded 3 meals for the week. Spending a little over $3 for three meals is a huge amount of savings. Comparatively, look how much each of the other meals. I ate out three times over the course of the week and that totaled $29.87 or $9.96 per meal!! One meal eating out cost me more than my ENTIRE GROCERY BILL FOR THE WEEK! While typically, when I order Indian food, I make it last for two meals, but not this week. I didn’t have the self-control or discipline to stop after the first serving. Cooking at home has done wonders for my portion control. I know each recipe needs to yield three portions. Once I am done cooking a recipe, I plate my meal for dinner and then the other two portions go into leftover containers and right in the fridge. There are no questions about having that additional serving because I know it would wreak havoc on my schedule going forth. For the past couple of weeks, I have been saying that I need to get back into a routine of cooking at home and now after doing this comparison of how much it actually does cost to eat out versus cooking at home, I am going to make a much more concerted effort to achieving that goal.
The other realization I had this week was a reinforcement of an idea I have known since the beginning of my journey. Pursuing financial independence does not mean living a life of deprivation. Looking at this past week, I spent almost $50 on a night out with friends but i valued every single minute I spent with them. If you look at it strictly as a cost per hour analysis it comes out to be around $8/hour. In the grand scheme of things, that’s chump change. It’s hard to put a price tag on spending time with the important people in your life. Putting things into perspective is a valuable life skill to have and not to beat yourself up over the little things in life. It’s weird to think that the monotony of this week really allowed me to explore some profound ideas that will help me on my journey to FIRE.
Steven | Rx for FIRE
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