If you want to know how to save money doing the no spend challenge, this article will really help you.

It reveals how the no spend challenge works and some really powerful tips that can help just about anyone save money doing the challenge.


Why Do the No Spend Challenge?

It has been said, “Don’t limit your challenges, challenge your limits.”

Life is comprised of one challenge after another.

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There are the personal and family challenges we face, there are the challenges we meet in the workplace, etc.

A challenge is merely an opportunity in disguise, and we have grown stronger with each challenge we have faced and been equal to the task.

Allow me, if you will, to put another challenge on your already challenged-filled plate. The challenge is the no-spending challenge.

Nothing hard, nothing earth-shattering, but can have a significant impact on your personal financial life.


What Is the No Spend Challenge?

The no-spend challenge is a fairly straightforward financial decision made by you to stop spending on careless, needless, or unnecessary things for some time.

Examples could be that bag of chips or can of soda or candy bar that one may have thoughtlessly thrown into their shopping cart when they are checking out.

Needless spending could also be classified as compulsive spending because something catches your eye, and you just buy it without even thinking when you’ve got several like it at home.


Purpose of the No Spend Challenge

There are a variety of reasons why one would want to take up this challenge.

One of those reasons is that simply it is a challenge, and you enjoy challenges especially when it comes to your money.

Another reason why an individual might want to take up the no spending challenge is that perhaps your budget has gotten off course and you need to readjust.

This readjustment can be accomplished by simply not spending and bringing your budget back into line.

Another reason why the individual could take up the challenge of no spending is that they want to use that money that they save and put it aside for special occasions such as a vacation, anniversary, birthday, or just simply save money for a rainy day.

Also See: Best Tips to Help You Get Money for Christmas!


Details of the No Spend Challenge

The details of the no spending challenge are pretty straightforward.

Over some time, of your choosing, you simply stop spending on those items that are outside of the normal or necessary bills that are required for the household to pay.

The period can range anywhere from a weekend, to a week, to a month. Your choice.

The no spending challenge can be likened to fasting where you do without certain food items to help cleanse your body or for other personal reasons.


Personal Story

The beauty of a challenge in our lives is that there can be two outcomes.

We either meet the challenge and succeed or we endeavor to meet the challenge and learn from not succeeding.

In either case, we succeed.

In the year 2000, before I heard of the no-spending challenge, this challenge was forced on me.

I was in over my head and buried neck deep with debt amounting close to $50,000.

I was in a deep and dark hole, and I just wanted someone to shovel the dirt back over me.

Fortunately, through a variety of circumstances and a supportive spouse, I spent no money except on necessities.

In 2005, I wrote my last check to my creditor. The no-spend challenge was a God-sent in that I learned about myself and more about personal finances.


12 Best Ways/Tips to Doing the No Spend Challenge to Save Money


1. Know Your “No Spend” Items

No spend items could be several things that we buy compulsively or spontaneously.

For example, if an individual or family has food in the refrigerator then the no spending item of eating out would be included on that list.

Another possibility of an item being on the no spend or taboo list could include doing without new clothes for the no spending timeframe.

Especially, when you have a wardrobe of clothes already and some that haven’t been worn.


2. Know Your “Spend” Items

Of course, the items on the spend list are items that need to be paid every month to keep the lights on, the car running, or food on the table.

Consequently, items on the spend list include paying utilities, paying rent, mortgage, insurance premiums, etc.


3. Prepare

As with all things, it is important for the success of your actions to prepare.

A foundational step would be to prepare a budget.

If a budget is in play within the household, review the budget and see what line items on the expense side of the sheet can be the first no-spending item on the list.

It could be entertainment and therefore not attending the movie theatre or eating out during this period.

Another line item could be clothing and may include not buying that extra pair of shoes.


4. Engage Others

Meeting a challenge is always a greater adventure and brings a higher success rate if more than one individual is involved.

Therefore, engage one’s family or challenge other friends and family members to this same challenge and see who can keep their commitment of no spending.

That way, and perhaps in a weak moment, one member of the family can encourage the other and remind them of the challenge so that the challenge has a successful end.


5. Plan

To have success it is important to have a plan in place.

Plan your schedule rather than your schedule plan you.

Therefore, on those weekends see what might be available at no cost to you, and your family can attend and keep you from spending.

Also, it is important to avoid those places that are notorious for enticing us to spend our hard-earned money.

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Examples of those types of places could be the local shopping center or mall, online browsing, to name a few.


6. Have a Goal

To aid in the successful completion of this no-spend challenge, it is important to have a focus.

In other words, what will you do with the extra money that you will have at the end of your chosen period?

  • Will that money go into a savings account?
  • Will it be invested?
  • Will be set apart for a vacation trip?
  • ETC

Having a focus and a goal will help the overall effort of not spending as you will be thinking about the money and how it will be used.

You will be laser-directed.

Talking about savings, below are some helpful guide to saving money:


7. Keep on Track

To keep on track, there are several tools or activities that the individual can utilize.

A calendar can be set up for the number of days that have been chosen for your challenge.

With the passing of each day, that calendar day can be checked off by either putting an X through it or some other sort of creative way of encouraging you and keeping you focused.

Worksheets that an individual can download at no cost to help them towards their successful completion of the challenge are available online.

One such example is a form that contains many drawn dollar bills and with the passing of each no spending day, those dollar bills could be x’ed out or colored in.


8. Get Back on the Horse

As a word of encouragement, it is important to understand that in all things, weight, exercising, etc., there may be a lapse in commitment or a “falling off the horse.”

If these times during the no spending challenge occur, it is important not to get discouraged but learn from missing the mark and focus, re-aim, and shoot at the target one more time.



9. Use What You Have

Also, perhaps you have food already in your refrigerator that has been forgotten or purposely avoided being eaten because you just weren’t in the mood for that particular food.

To help follow through on your no spending challenge create a menu incorporating those foods that are in your refrigerator and utilize them.


10. Tracking

A great discipline to utilize during the no spending challenge is to track your spending.

Perhaps, there are times where you wonder where the extra money is supposed to be leftover at the end of the month.

By tracking all of your expenses, writing down each item purchased, and the amount will help provide a log of what those hidden expenditures are and where that money ends up going.

By keeping a written log, one will be surprised as those extra items that are purchased impulsively will add up to larger amounts of money.


11. Timing

If taking up this challenge it is important to select the appropriate time.

By this, it is meant that it is probably not a good idea to take up the no spending challenge when it is close to a holiday or major celebration.

The inappropriate time to start this commitment would be just setting you up to fail.

It’s even more difficult not to buy that festive latte at your favorite gourmet coffee shop or by the extra sweets at Thanksgiving or Christmas.


12. Implement Practical Tips

If you happen to receive a gift card during this challenge, unfortunately, that gift card would be part of the list that is defined as no spending.

Therefore, rather than purchasing clothing or eating out at the restaurant, use that gift card later on and make it twice as an enjoyable experience.

Save your unused gift card.

Another practical suggestion is that if the family or you go out on a little local trip, and when you get thirsty or have a craving for a snack, rather than stopping at your favorite drive-in and indulging, make sure that everyone has a bottle of water and a snack.

Also, to avoid spending during your challenge, take advantage of free offerings within one’s community.

An example could include a trip to the library rather than purchasing a book or even a visit to that famous warehouse marketplace that often gives out free samples.


No Spending Challenge to Save Money FAQs


What Is the Danger of the No Spending Challenge?

The biggest danger of the no spending challenge is similar to going on a diet.

Like a diet, you give up all of the things that you love or are high in carbohydrates or satisfy your sweet tooth.

At the end of the diet, you then give in to your cravings and binge eat.

Consequently, not only do you gain all of your weight back but sometimes more.

The no spending challenge can be the same way.

You don’t spend any money but after some time then you just go back to your old ways and find out that when the dust has settled, you have spent more money than what you saved during the challenge.

Below are some helpful guide to saving money:


With This Challenge What Can Be the Anticipated Savings?

Of course, the answer varies with people’s income level, but a reasonable range would be from a few hundred dollars on up to $1000 or possibly even more.

It also is dependent upon how you just suffered will be looking long you commit to this no spending challenge.


You Can Do It

Spontaneous buying and compulsive spending can be a real challenge in itself for individuals who try to adhere to a budget and put money aside side each month in savings.

Of course, credit cards and revolving charge cards don’t make it any easier as it is so easy just to take out a piece of plastic, swipe it and make a purchase.

However, with a little discipline and a strategy and working that strategy, you can be successful at this no spending challenge.



It is our human nature to respond to a challenge.

At stake is our pride and ego and for an individual to infer that we are unable to meet the challenge only makes our resolve greater and shows them that we are up to the task.

The beauty of this challenge is that not only will you feel good about accomplishing the actions needed to be successful but also the possibility of modifying one’s spending habits may be a bonus.

I’ve always been told that triumph is a combination of two words try and umph.

Regardless of what challenge you have in your life, you can always meet that challenge and be triumphant by trying and putting extra effort or “umph” into it.

Consequently, the rewards will be a padded ego and a padded wallet.

Again, this company has paid $25+ million to members:

SurveyJunkie (only USA, Canada, Australia residents allowed). You can earn money sharing your thoughts. They have already paid $25+ million to their 20+ million members just for sharing their thoughts and opinions. Click here to join SurveyJunkie for FREE

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Apart from being a seasoned Personal Finance expert who has written for top publications around the world, I bring significant personal financial experience. Long story short... through bad financial choices... I found myself $100,000 plus in debt. I was able to dissolve this indebtedness and regain financial solvency. This financial turn around was accomplished through reading, studying and implementing a financial plan. My financial plan included paying down my debt through budgeting, being cognizant of where my financial resources were being spent, changing my attitude about money and understanding the binding chains of the improper use of credit. Today, and for 10 years, I have been debt free and have invested wisely to enjoy my current retirement. This is allowing me to write to help others make, save and grow money wisely!