Cold Hard Numbers

So I’m changing it up today, keeping you all on your toes. Usually Mr. Wow is the numbers man and I like to talk more about the touchy-feely side of financial independence and early retirement. Well, not today.  Today I am going to air out some dirty laundry. I’m going to share with you the harsh realization I faced a few months ago, the realization of how much money I was throwing away.

Back before I had valued the FIRE mindset, I was the queen of monthly memberships. You name it, I did it: massages, movies, clothing, music and gym memberships.  And I didn’t just join and then cancel a month later, I was the epitome of a “lifer”.  Not because I truly valued what I was getting, but more because it was just too much of a pain to cancel. Most were such a small fee each month anyways so I just didn’t think that it was that big of a deal. Oh how I was wrong, here are the numbers:

Fabletics: $60.00/month

Massage Envy: $60.00/month

Netflix: $8.00/month

Stitch Fix: $20/month + whatever I buy.  Average cost $75/month

Spotify: $10.00/month

Gym: $200.00/month

Total: $413/month
Annual Total: $4,956
5 Year Total: $24,780

Wait, what?

I was spending around $5,000 dollars a year and up to $25,000 dollars in 5 years on unnecessary items.  Not to mention that some of these I was doing much longer than 5 years so that number would be much, much higher.  This doesn’t even include the important stuff like housing and food.  Let’s just say that I had finally had my “aha” moment.  This is when it started to sink in.  Although, none of these expenses in itself is a ton of money per month, the important fact to note is that it adds up over time.  Not to mention, how many hours of work that constitutes as. Was it worth it?  For me, hell no!! I almost regret the amount of money I spent in the past decade on frivolous stuff like this.

Today, I can happily announce that I have cancelled all of my monthly memberships.  And honestly, I haven’t noticed any decrease in my quality of life.  If anything, I have gained a better outlook and no longer feel chained to the monthly debt.  The big thing I noticed was how much money I was now saving.  I pretty much took the money that I was spending and sunk it straight into a savings account.  I wasn’t missing it before so I knew that I wouldn’t miss it now.  But now I have the comfort that it is actually helping me meet my goal of FI.

What it comes down is finding what is actually worth spending your money on.  For me, none of these monthly subscriptions were worth it and I am much happier now.  I am no longer spending unnecessary money, therefore more going into savings (yay!) and I no longer am stressed about having to cancel the membership (aka Mr. Wow breathing down my neck every month and me having to tell him that I “didn’t have time”). What was your aha moment?



  • Gwen @ FieryMillennials February 21, 2017 at 8:25 am

    And, not to mention, you’re no longer getting tempted to buy clothes every month (that you probably didn’t need!) because they’re not getting sent directly to your door! Win win!
    Gwen @ FieryMillennials recently posted…Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

    • Mrs WoW February 21, 2017 at 7:55 pm

      Oh my gosh YES! My last purchases still haunt me every time I open my closet. I didn’t really want or need them, but I bought them because I didn’t want to waste the styling fee that I had already paid. Glad I am out of that vicious cycle!!


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