I gave up my Facebook & Twitter Blackberry apps for Lent. This allowed me to discover that I didn't really need them. In fact, it was great to free up some mental space! I started thinking about the $30 I paid every month for my data plan. I wanted that $30 dollars! I saw beautifully pedicured toes in my future - every month, I'd perceive an extra $30 and go running off to Nails So Happy.
Obstacle: I wanted to still be able to use my phone for email, esp to send pictures. Solution: Verizon now has a not-so-smart phone. For a $10 monthly data plan, I could send emails (as well as actually get Facebook & Twitter). So, I was down to a $20 monthly savings. Well, that very nearly pays for Nails So Happy pedicure. Ah, but then there was the fact that I had to pay $100 for the not-so-smart phone. So, it would be 5 months before the pedicures started rolling in. But it's going to add up! I expect this phone to last a good 2 years. My total savings will be $340.
Could I have afforded the pedicures all along if I really wanted them? Sure, but that's not usually what I chose to do with my disposable income. My point is that with money, as with food & time, you have to make trade-offs. I like finding things that I could really do without & getting rid of them. Each time I use my new phone, I realize I don't like it as much as the Blackberry, but it's like a goose laying a golden egg every month - an egg with 20 bucks inside!
Now ... if only I could figure out something I spend my time on that I'm willing to trade for the pedicures ...