Money, Saving Money

Monday Thru Friday NO SPEND Challenge

Monday Thru Friday NO SPEND Challenge Is On! Let’s have some fun.

Two weeks ago, after adding up my expenses for September, I was shocked surprised to see I spent almost $80 in coffee! It wasn’t just for me and it wasn’t only coffee, but still $80 at a coffee shop! I also had quite a few extra expenses for snacks, chocolates. It all added up! So I decided to cut back a bit in October and start a NO SPEND challenge from Monday thru Friday.

Additional Benefits Of A No SPEND Challenge

  • Less expenses means less receipts to enter and keep track of! I get lazy as I get older.
  • If you consume too much of a good thing, you don’t appreciate it as much.

Why Monday Thru Friday?

Well because you have to start somewhere and it may not be as hard during the week. And it’s only five days!

Remember slow and steady wins the race:)

Plus I feel I get more value out of my spending on the week-end. For example, if I go for an expensive* coffee during the week, it is often on my way to work or if I take a brief break. On the week-end, it is more relax, I usually go with one of my daughters (my son doesn’t like hanging out in coffee shops!), my partner or a friend. We sit down and catch up while enjoying a cup of overpriced coffee. So I get a lot more value by spending money on a coffee on the week-end than during the week (in general). And it’s the same for a lot of other small expenses.

* I never buy regular coffee at a coffee shop, I don’t see the point of it, mine is just as good at home. On the other hand I love a good latte or cappuccino and can’t replicate at home (I have tried!)

Last Week

Last week I unofficially started my challenge (it’s like prepping for a competition) and almost made it until:

  • Thursday when there was a bake sale in my building. It was for the benefit of a local charity so  I fell I had to contribute by buying a few baked goods! (Twist my arm)
  • And then on Friday I broke down and bought myself a cappuccino at $4.75! I still enjoyed it, even with the guilt.

I was so close, I know I can do it. So I am trying this week again!

I bought everything I needed on the week-end including more backup food for lunches, snacks and anything else I could think of (but no gift cards!).

Too bad I can’t order a few cappuccinos ahead of time!

Related post: Did You Forget Your Lunch Again?

This Week

So far so good, as long as I make it until tonight. I forgot my purse yesterday which was good because I was in a spending mood!

Will accountability help?

Who Is This Challenge More Suited For?

People who:

  • Buy coffee or specialty coffees or any type of drinks during the week
  • Have a sweet tooth or craving for all type of snacks
  • Don’t bring their lunch to work.
  • Make regular stops at the grocery store during the week.
  • Shop at lunch time!
  • Spend money during the week:)

Monday Thru Friday NO SPEND Challenge Rule:

Only one: NO SPEND!


  • Gas – So I can get to work.
  • Emergencies –Very subjective but coffee isn’t one of them
  • Planned social event – I am not cheap, only frugal!

Why A Challenge:

It’s more motivating when you set a goal and a few rules, even if it’s just for yourself. My grocery challenge worked out great but I totally dropped the ball in September when I stopped tracking regularly and probably got a little cocky. (Post still to come!)

Related post: ** Mission Accomplished ** June 2018 Grocery Budget

This small challenge is the same. I am hoping it’s going to help me achieve my goal :

Reduce my NVA (No Value Added) expenses.

Can I go 5 days a week without spending any money? It sounds so easy.

Over To You

Do you create small challenges for yourself ? What are they? It doesn’t have to be about money, food? exercise?

Interested in participating in the Monday thru Friday NO SPEND challenge next week and report back on this post? It’s only FIVE days!

Where do you usually waste spend most of your money during the week? What are your NVA expenses?

Please pin me:)Monday Thru Friday NO SPEND Challenge

22 thoughts on “Monday Thru Friday NO SPEND Challenge

  1. Mmm coffee!! A Monday to Friday challenge sounds like a great idea! What really helped me is just by writing down my purchases in my day planner and adding it up at end of the week. Sounds like you are already doing that though!

    1. Hi GYM, yes keeping track of it helps but challenging myself seems to work even better. Friday seems to be a tougher day for me not to spend! Have a great week-end

  2. Hi Caroline, No issue with coffee spend here. I drink it for pennies a cup as you may know. My drinking issue is with beer and spirits at the liquor store since I don’t brew that myself. Maybe I should start? But for now I’m willing to live with that. Tom

    1. Drinking issue or drinking problem?:)
      I can live with my coffee issue too but I like to change things up once in a while.
      And yes I totally think you should try to make your own beer and then write a post about it! Cheers

  3. I think this is a great idea! I’m a rule follower so having a few in place typically helps keep me in line. I used to spend a lot of money in coffee shops, but now I’ll only go if I’m meeting a friend to socialize. I can make a pretty good cup at home so that’s helpful. I also used to have a bad habit of ordering anything and everything on Prime, often with regrets. So I instituted a rule that I could only place orders on Wednesdays. That helped cut back on my spending and now I’ll often go weeks without even getting on Amazon.

    1. I have never ordered that much on line except sometimes for Christmas. I can see where you may need to implement some rules with you became a Prime Addict:) Glad it is working out better now.
      We all have our own little flaws:)
      I have a feeling my challenge may be a fail again, Friday is just a tough one. I have thought of so many things I want to get on my way home! But I will be strong (maybe)

  4. i usually buy my wine on fridays with the free tasting involved. that’s all i spend on most weeks. i guess i could do it on a saturday, but i don’t know what mrs. me spends money on during the week. i think something more useful for me would be to skip a week of buying wine once each month and just limit to what’s in the house, which is plenty. i’ve been wanting to do the same with food to clear out the pantry and freezer a little. good luck with your challenge. do you have one of those little stovetop espresso pots? those make great stuff.

    1. Hi Freddy, you can’t give up on the free tasting! And I see a recurring pattern here, my readers love their liquor!
      Great idea on the food, not sure if it would work at my house (with my 3 kids).
      I have a fancy espresso machine but, for the life of me , I can’t get anything good out of it. It’s the foam, I can’t get it right.

        1. Thanks for the link Freddy.
          For good strong coffee, I do use my french press (Bodum) once in a while and it’s awesome. It’s the specialty coffee with foam I need to work on:)

    1. Hi Angela,
      Sad to say, but I am one of those people you can’t talk to in the morning until after I had my coffee! Sounds like you can relate:)
      I’ve never tried a no spend week-end (or even one day on the week-end). It wouldn’t work for me for sure.

  5. I had some trouble doing no-spend days because expenses kept cropping up. Some I might have been able to put off, but things like gas and prescriptions… Not so much. And if I’m going to do a no-spend day, I want it to be truly free of spending. Still, it’s something I would like to start sprinkling in now and again.

    1. Hi Abigail, yes it is easy for expenses to creep up.
      Gas, prescription, groceries are all necessary evils but coffees, snacks…not so much. That’s the expenses you can view as NVA, unless you are having an awful day and that chocolate bar will make all the difference:)
      I was successful this week but Friday afternoon and evening was VERY challenging! Maybe I will tweak the rules a little:)
      But looking at what needs to be entered in my spreadsheet for this week so far…NOTHING! feels great.

  6. I did a zero day challenge last year where I tracked how many days in a month where I didn’t spend a single penny on anything. I think I had around 15 zero spending days during a whole month and could of had more zero days if I didn’t lump all my spendings because I would spend $3 one day then $2 the next and could have all of them one day. Maybe I’ll do this challenge again in the future.
    Currently I’m trying to go out for a run once a week. I used to go out running a lot before we had our son. When he was born, I derailed all my workout plans so I can dedicate all my time with him. Now that he is two going on three, I have found a small window of time to myself during weekends and trying to take advantage of it by running 3-4 miles a week. Hopefully I can keep it up.

    1. It’s all about balance and setting goals that work for YOU.
      Having kids can make it quite a challenge to find time for yourself but it’s critical to do it for your own mental health. I was (and still am) guilty of not doing a good job at it.
      Setting balanced goals, like you are already doing, is a move in the right direction:) cheers

  7. Hi Caroline, good idea not to spend from Monday to Friday. Then you can enjoy more during the weekend.

    Luckily I don’t have any urge to spend. Usually just the grocery shopping once a week. Now I’m in China, and there is a small convenience store next to my mom’s place. Sometimes I just walked over, and checked any snacks or fruits, vegetables I like. The price here is very low. The persimmons are only 35 cents per pound. Have a great weekend.

    1. Hi Helen, hope your mom is doing ok.
      34 cents per pound? That’s crazy.
      Overall I am good with my spending but some weeks I can get carried away on NVA expenses (like last month) so a little challenge is helpful.

  8. Love keeping track of my no spend days! Frontloading groceries and meal prepping may seem tedious but it has improved my savings rate and that’s all that matters for us right now as we near retirement. I average 4-5 no spend days without even trying at this point, (groceries and gas don’t count, of course). One thing that makes this work for me, I love my home coffee and my travel mug. Another thing that works for me, I love making delicious food that I can portion out for the week, I don’t get bored with repetitive meals luckily, with fruit and veg to add variety. TAnother key, is to make sure I stay caffeinated and well fed, otherwise impulse spending, eating and drinking will occur!!

    1. Hi Karen, thanks for your feedback. I had to make groceries count during the week;in September we spent way too much on food because, mostly, of my recurring stops at the store during the week (which I documented in several of my posts as being REALLY BAD! Such an hypocrite on this one!).
      And I am with you on the staying caffeinated and well fed! Impulse spending is the worst. Cheers

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