No matter how much you love your job we all have days where we need a break. Too often we justify over spending on things we do not need in hopes to help relieve our stress from work. Finding productive frugal things to do after work can really help.
Things to avoid.
1. Picking up dinner on the way home. It's all to easy to stop and grab something on the way home rather then cooking a cheaper healthier meal. My wife is great when it comes to this, after a long day at work she somehow still has the energy to make us a fabulous meal. It saves us a lot of money and tastes incredible. One tip she has is making a menu for the whole week, plan easier meals or leftovers on the days you know you will be tempted the most to go out for dinner.
2. Do not go shopping right after work. Giving into the notion that you deserve something is easy after a day full of meetings and a proposal that was turned down. Head home and do something you really love to cheer you up, then head to the store.
Things to do.
1. Go for a walk or workout, exercising relieves stress and burns calories. It's also free and a great way to spend the evening. It also pumps you up and gives you energy to make those hours productive rather then just watching the TV until the end of the night.
2. Work in the yard or finish up that project you started but never finished last summer.
3. Start a small business, making a few extra dollars doing something you have always wanted to try is not only fun but you may end up loving the entrepreneurship experience.
4. Join a club or volunteer at a local service project. People who volunteer are happier and less stressed. So do some research and join an organization that you believe in and make a difference.
5. Meditate, take a few minutes to sit and meditate forget about the things going on at work and shift your focus to something else.
6. Set a budget for how much you are willing spend after work. Keep it low and let your hard earned dollars accumulate.
Most importantly be aware that poor spending habits can be formed when we are feeling sad or stressed avoid the temptation to spend during those times. What do you after work to relieve stress and unwind that is cheap or free?