Image courtesy of
Image courtesy of
It can be really useful to your finances if you are frugal. If you spend very little or the bare minimum then you can pay off your debts, save money, build up a retirement fund or anything else that needs money. However, it can be difficult to do this sometimes as if you do not seem to be being generous people may judge that you are being tight. There are ways to get around this though.

Explain your motives
It is wise to explain to friends and family that you are being frugal for a reason. Explain to them that you are trying to pay off your mortgage, saving for retirement or whatever reason you have for being frugal. If they love and care about you they will be understanding and supportive. They may even encourage you to be more frugal so that you can reach your goal more quickly.

Have a monthly budget for spending when with others
If you feel like you want a chance to spend sometimes then you could budget for it. If you go out for drinks with friends, for example, it is nice to be able to take your turn at treating them. It can be nice to gout places such as the cinema but you will need to pay your way. If you allocate a small budget for this sort of thing, then you can still join in without making yourself or them feel guilty about your purchases.

Regift or make things to give to people
When it comes to giving gifts it can be difficult. Items can be expensive to buy and you may be torn between giving a lovely gift to a person that deserves it and parting with money that you could be saving towards your goal. One way of getting around this is to regift items. This means that if you are given items that you will not use, then you can give them to someone else that might appreciate them more. If you are creative you may be able to make gifts. This can sometimes cost more money than buying things, but it very much depends on the type of gift that you choose.

Give people your time rather than physical things
You may be able to give people your time instead of a gift. You may have a skill that they can make use of, perhaps you can do some cleaning, gardening or DIY for them. You may be able to fix their computer, teach them a skill they want or just spend some time with them. People will have different needs and so it will be up to you to decide what you think would be best for that person or you could ask them if there is anything that they would like you to do for them.

If you like to give to charity but feel that you want to keep your money for your own projects then it can create a dilemma for you. However, many charities rely a lot on volunteers as well as donations and so you may be able to spare some time to help them. If you have particular projects that you care about then you could get in touch to find out whether there is anything that you can do to help. You may be able to organise fundraising events, collect donations or even work within the project doing jobs.