Avoid Excessive Spending This Ramadan with This One Simple Step
There is a reason why most retailers in Indonesia see their business soar during Ramadan. For most Indonesians, this is the most anticipated time of the year when Muslims, who make up the majority of the population, observe the annual fast. But fasting is not the only ritual that we Indonesians practice during Ramadan; for many, this special month is also a time for shopping.
It is a common practice among Indonesians to spend our hard-earned money on food, gifts, and activities during this holy month, sometimes excessively. In all likelihood, it is easy to fall into a habit of impulse buying when one spends their time almost every day wandering in and out of stores in a mall with an empty stomach waiting for sunset to come and they can break their fast.
Thus, impulse buying becomes another struggle to face during this month of fasting. Much like hunger or thirst, the urges to buy and consume can come so suddenly and so strongly that one needs an even stronger willpower to stave them off.
So, how to avoid excessive spending this Ramadan?
One way to fight those urges is to cut off at the source. When you don’t have money to spend, you are most likely not going to go on a shopping spree. Now, this is not as extreme as it may sound. This is not to say that you should strip yourself completely off money, but rather, save only a little bit more than the amount you need to cover all your expenses this month. To do this, you must first know how much money you need to cover those expenses (read our tips on how to manage your money this Ramadan).
Once you have planned your expenses for the month and figured out the approximate amount of money you need to cover everything, including emergency expenses, invest the rest (or a big chunk of it). There are many investment alternatives that you can try, from stocks to state bonds and mutual funds; from gold, bitcoins to peer-to-peer lending. Be sure to diversify your investments to minimize your overall risk and maximize potential returns.
By investing your money, you will be forced to draw from your nest egg whenever you want to make a purchase outside of your budget. This way, you are less likely to be tempted to buy things you don’t really need. Not only will you spend less, you will also gain some money from your investments. Now that’s two birds with one stone.