Michelle McGagh is a financial journalist-turned-minimalist who managed to go an entire year without buying stuff.
Yep, that’s right – an entire freakin’ year. And her bank account is AU$37,000 richer for it.
But London-based McGagh wasn’t satisfied with a measly day, so she decided to up the ante.
“Spending nothing for a whole year would do wonders for my wallet and stop me from refilling my empty shelves with more possessions,” McGagh has written for the Telegraph about the journey that also inspired her new book, ‘The No Spend Year: How I Spent Less and Lived More’.
“It sounds extreme, but I’d set myself budgets and spending plans in the past and they’d always fallen by the wayside on my next night out.
“A full year of no spending seemed the only way of resetting my relationship with money completely.”
That would mean no morning takeaway coffees – McGagh’s personal weakness – no clothes, and no makeup. Instead, just the essentials; “mortgage, utilities, life insurance, charity donations, broadband and mobile phone bills… basic toiletries and cleaning products”.
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“There was no budget for luxuries – that meant no cinema trips, no nights in the pub, no takeaways or restaurant meals, no new clothes, no holidays, no gym memberships, not even a KitKat or cheeky cheesecake from the supermarket.”
Luckily, her husband Frank obliged to the strict $57 weekly food budget between them, and wasn’t too fazed by his wife’s insistence on a $0 transport budget – the year would see her ride her bike everywhere, and reject all offers of alternative transport.