3 months ago I gave up my iPhone. Willingly. I wasn’t coerced. Let me tell you it wasn’t easy! I did it for a few reasons, the main one being to save $$$. Actually that was the only reason, however I did see that other benefits could potentially arise from this painful separation.
HOW DID I ARRIVE AT THIS SEEMINGLY TERRIBLE DECISION?
In the months leading up to the occasion, I had become more aware of how much money my wife and I were spending on our monthly communication expenses.
I define ‘communication expenses’ as any money paid to receive information from, or communicate with the outside world. For example, your phone(s), cable, internet, magazine or newspaper subscriptions. Even streaming services such as Netflix, Apple Music or Spotify count.
Most families don’t realize the collective impact of these expenses on their budget, because each on it’s own is not that large. Also, people tend to incur additional expenses over time, as new services and technologies emerge, rather than all at once.
If you’ve read my recent post, “Death By A Thousand Cuts: The Startling Costs of Communication”, I go into depth about this.
While many would consider our family’s communication spending to be rather modest by comparison to their own, it still seemed excessive to me.
“THE MORE WE SHARE, THE MORE WE HAVE” – Leonard Nimoy
Let me get this straight, I love the idea of sharing! But this whole generosity thing, or being a “good neighbour”, what’s that all about? Some people say sharing helps to conserve and save our planet…sheeesh! I’m talking about sharing to SAVE MONEY!
Of course I kid : ), but in all seriousness, one benefit of sharing IS to conserve your cash, not just trees and clean water!
Circling back to 3 months ago and my iPhone, I realized I had an opportunity to put sharing into action!
Here is where I need to clarify a couple of things. My idea was that Mrs. Mystery Money, who had her own iPhone and being the generous woman that she is, would want to share with her loving husband : )
So, I presented the idea of cancelling my plan and us sharing her phone, which would save us about $80/month, give or take. That’s $960 per year, not including hardware costs when upgrading phones etc!!
Fortunately she saw the logic in my idea. We cancelled my plan and our monthly cell bill was effectively cut in half! Actually, the savings was closer to 66%, as my employer pays for roughly 50% of one phone bill, which I sometimes use for work.
HOW AM I DOING?
I know, that’s your next question. : ) Well, I discovered just how addicted I was. But after a few weeks, once the cold sweats and facial tics subsided, I felt much better. Actually, I felt fantastic when I got my post break-up phone bill and it was less than half the usual amount.
I know a cynic may say, “how much have you really sacrificed, as you still have access to a ‘shared’ phone?”. The point I’m making is not really about my iPhone fixation. It’s about people making small sacrifices of convenience in order to save money. This way they can begin to enjoy more important things, such as increased cash flow, the ability to pay down debt, more money to give to others, or simply to enjoy more financial freedom!
Society has been programmed (IMO brainwashed) to believe that convenience has such great value, that in order to achieve it, one must spend a tonne of money on things they really can do without.
I encourage you to begin identifying resources in your household that can be shared, to eliminate waste and save money. For example, how many cars do you have in your driveway? Adding a second or third vehicle is one of the largest expenses families can have. That’s one example, but there are many.
Have a great Wednesday everyone, I’m out!
“Honey, where’s your phone?” : )