12 Frugal Behaviors That Will Make You Happier and Healthier

A Reddit user started a discussion on the platform about frugal things people do that are not necessarily driven by money. She gave an example that she no longer uses her car on many days so that she can put in some exercise by walking as she has liver issues that prevent her from going to the gym. She saves gas money while improving her health in the process.

Other Reddit community members chipped into this conversation, and we have sampled some of the best responses from this thread.

Time Is a Commodity

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Many people do not view time as a product; hence they are not as frugal as they should be. A user puts it very clearly here, “Time is a commodity. I try to group things together that make sense to group together. Like, if I’m going to cook and make a mess in the kitchen, I might as well cook extra or cook a bunch of different things and then clean up the kitchen once. Or, if I’m going someplace a few hours away, I’ll plan other things on the way back instead of going back and forth.”

Being Conscious of the Environment

Two 'Climate action now' and 'climate emergency' signs rest on a sidewalk during a climate change march in London, Ontario, Canada in September, 2021. No people.
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One user offers an example of how he is doing his part by being deliberately frugal to save the environment, “I am frugal with my van’s fuel this way because of environmental impact as well as money. I try to avoid the need for auto idling, as the less efficient engine performance while idling increases emissions.”

Value Added Meals

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Some people love their foods basic but others go the extra mile to ensure they preserve their food by adding value to them. “If I have a free burner and enough time to chop something, I like caramelizing some onions or leeks that I then either freeze or dehydrate (note if you use oil in the process, it won’t have the shelf life dehydrated as just onions would). Then when I am making a quick meal later, I have a “value-added” ingredient that adds a lot to my simple dish,” said one user.

Keep Work Clothes to a Basic

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We all know the pain of having to spend time figuring out which clothing to wear to work every morning. Some users seem to have cracked this one up. One said, “For work, I had a basic “uniform”. Solid dark colored pants (black, gray, navy). Then solid colored nice t-shirt, and a solid blouse/overshirt/sweater to wear with it.”

Another added, “Any day of the week, all I had to do was pick one each from those categories. Everything looked generic enough that I could cycle the same items into different combos almost endlessly and without using up a lot of mental energy getting ready.”

Stop Being a Striver

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Work hard but protect your mental well-being, a former striver advises, “My time and mental bandwidth. I am no longer a striver. I am happy with a simple job that I never have to take home and lots of time just for me.”

Create Time for Every Chore

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One user has a simple way of spending his time frugally by scheduling chores and prioritizing things to ensure there is no time wastage. “Reflecting in another comment about time as a resource, I try to not do chores at the weekend. Laundry, grocery shopping, eye test, haircut, etc., all done in the week (I work from home and use my lunch hour), meaning weekends are free of appointments as far as possible,” he says.

Finding a Different Way of Learning and Entertainment

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Another user found a great way to keep themselves entertained while still learning by use of podcasts and e-books, “I think it’s kind of a combination of frugal for money and time but library usage for e-books and audiobooks. As well as podcast listening. I learn new things, I’m entertained as I do work around the house, and they’re free!”

Walk Everywhere

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The family of one of the users here has a golden rule that they have to walk wherever they can whenever possible. They save on gas money and improve their health cheaply, “We live in a small town. General rule of thumb in our house is: if you can walk there and back in less than an hour, then get walkin’.”

Preserve Your Mental Wellbeing

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In the age of the internet, where one can get cyberbullied, it is easy to get depressed. One user says they preserve their emotional energy by not listening to trolls. This allows them to engage in other more constructive activities, “Had to relearn a big one today. I don’t give my emotional energy to trolls. I like to have conversations, but once someone keeps telling you there is only one way to do things and that every experience you tell about must be backed up by peer-reviewed evidence, I’m out.”

Shop Online

online shopping.
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Shopping online can save you gas money and time spent taking the trip to the store; according to another user, “People who love shopping too much hate online shopping because they can’t control themselves. If it saves me 1.5hrs of driving to not goto the nearest city, I’ll take that free overnight delivery any day of the week.”

Reduce Food Waste

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Another user hates the idea of spending money on food and then letting some go to waste, “Reducing food waste. Sure, it does save money. But I am mostly motivated by the fact that it is such a shame to have all those resources devoted to food production/ purchasing/ preparing for it to just get thrown away.”

Conserving Energy

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If there is a way you can save on energy and money without compromising your comfort, do it; according to one user, “I reduce the heat in the cold months to 18C and wear sweaters and snuggle under blankets. I turn down the heat to 16C in rooms I don’t use and also in my bedroom because I have a down-fill duvet and prefer a cool room for sleeping.”

Being a Minimalist

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Being minimalistic helps reduce the burden of taking care of clutter. This has worked quite well for one user, “I think that this is called minimalism. I thought for a long time that I was frugal, but I think I’m just a minimalist because money was never a worry/thought. The few things I buy, I like to get quality over quantity.”

12 Items Frugal People Proudly Exclude From Their Shopping List

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Frugal people are known to spend their money wisely. They live within their means and don’t spend a lot of money. According to a thread on Quora, here are some common things frugal people never buy.

12 Items Frugal People Proudly Exclude from Their Shopping List

23 Side Hustles You Never Considered That Make More Than Your 9 to 5

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Have you ever wanted to make a lot of money from a side hustle and quit your 9 to 5? You may know about the typical side hustles, but I bet you never even heard of these lucrative side hustles!

23 Side Hustles You Never Considered That Make More Than Your 9 to 5

9 So-Called “Frugal” Habits That Are Actually a Waste of Time and Money

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Not everything is frugal! I am sure you have read articles and tips that promote frugal living and give some ideas that are just not frugal! These frugal myths float around and sometimes even cost people a lot of money!

9 So-Called “Frugal” Habits That Are Actually a Waste of Time and Money

10 Stupid Scams People Won’t Stop Falling For

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It seems like every day there is a new scam popping up, promising to make you rich or solve all of your problems. Yet, despite the prevalence of scams and the numerous warnings about them, people still fall for them.

10 Stupid Scams People Won’t Stop Falling For

20 Hilariously Outdated Pieces of Boomer Advice That Leave Millennials in Stitches

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From lectures on frugality to hard work, Baby Boomer advice is never in short supply. But what happens when that wisdom doesn’t seem to fit with the experiences of a millennial? Some advice needs to be left in the past.

20 Hilariously Outdated Pieces of Boomer Advice That Leave Millennials in Stitches

This article was produced and syndicated by A Dime Saved.