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bargain

Why We Can’t Stop Spending Money

Look up any commentary or news piece about poor Malaysians and the (sad) state of our finances, and you can find discussions about our self-control. Apparently, some of us lack self-control so much that we simply can’t help buying all the H&M clothes and trying out all the Starbucks drinks against our better judgement. That, said the commentators, is the reason why many of us complain too much about the cost of living, so stop complaining and just buy less lah!

This shallow reasoning makes me angry.

Are we simply going to ignore decades worth of behavioural economics research that is used to influence our purchasing behaviour and habits? Or do we just not take into account thousands of people employed in big companies whose jobs is to develop and execute sales, advertisement and marketing strategies?

And you expect me, a mere individual, to be able to resist all these combined efforts and temptations, 100% of the time? And tell me I lack willpower?

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Groceries in Malaysia: Introduction to Grocery Hauls

Grocery Hauls! I’m going to talk about my grocery shopping habits today!

I absolutely love grocery shopping. Generally I am very strict with myself about spending, but grocery is where I allow myself to be more open to trying out new experiences or products.

Based on this post where I broke down my spending habits for 12 months on a RM3500 salary, I calculated that I spent an average of RM286.29 per month on groceries.

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Given my diet, which I think is pretty healthy, I think that I’m doing pretty well budgeting for groceries. Let’s do a quick calculation.

Simplifying it, there are 3 meals a day (breakfast, lunch, dinner). I’m going to make it into 4 (+snacks) because I snack a lot. I snack at least once a day, and more often than not multiple times a day, so this is a lowball figure. 30 days x 4 meals = 120 meals a month. Out of those meals, let’s say I eat out for 20 meals a month. So that means that I don’t eat out for 100 meals a month.

This means that my average meal costs me RM2.86 (RM286.29 / 100 meals). A mere RM2.86!

What do I eat for RM2.86 a meal? I’ll show you 🙂

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