Get posts right in your inbox!

Convincing Myself I’m Worth It + Call for Guest Posts

March 6, 2018
Convincing Myself I'm Worth It + Call for Guest Posts_ Tiny Ambitions

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’m going on vacation at the end of March. My oldest friend wanted to get away and I was more than happy to oblige. Travel isn’t normally something I’m super jazzed about because the actual act of traveling gives me a lot of anxiety. But, when a friend wants to spend time with you, you figure it out.

So, imagine my surprise when I clicked the ‘Book’ button and immediately starting having some serious anxiety. At first, I thought it was the dollar amount for the trip as a whole. We’re going to an all-inclusive 7-day vacation in St. Lucia. It’s costing me a pretty penny. Two thousand dollars worth of pennies to be exact. That’s a lot of money. So, naturally, I thought my sweaty-palm, foggy brain, tight stomach response was because of the sheer dollar amount that was leaving my bank account.

I sat with those uncomfortable feelings for a couple of hours before it dawned on me. What I realized was, I wasn’t anxious because of the money – at least not because of what the trip was costing. I realized I was anxious because I am afraid of spending money. Specifically, I’m afraid of spending money on myself.

Convincing Myself I'm Worth It + Call for Guest Posts {Pin} _ Tiny Ambitions

Wait, what?

This was a weird observation for me to make. You’d think that, as a reformed compulsive shopper, I’d have no problem spending money on myself. But, I now realize that compulsive shopping wasn’t actually about spending money on myself – it was about helping myself not have to deal with my problems. It was a distraction from myself and from reality.

If you think about it, most of what we tend to spend our money on is not just for our own direct benefit. I buy groceries to feed myself and Mr. Tiny Ambitions. I pay for car insurance and maintenance costs so we have a way to get to work every day. And, we pay rent so we have a roof over our heads.

On the other hand, this vacation is about me and my friend spending some quality time together and enjoying a tropical destination. Spending that money would only really benefit myself and it was a declaration of my worthiness (in my mind), which was very uncomfortable.

The trip could have cost $500 or even $1000 less than it did and I think I would have had the same reaction to it. I would have freaked out because the trip represents me saying that I am worth taking time off work to unwind. That I’m worth spending my hard earned money on an adventure, instead of just squirreling it away every month in my savings accounts. There’s nothing wrong with saving your money (and that’s how I normally operate). But, there’s something about spending it on a big ticket item like a vacation that just seems so much more public. Booking this vacation was a public declaration that I’m worth spending money on.

I’m still mulling over these feelings and I’m sure they will continue to evolve. But, that’s where I’m at right now.

Aren’t you on a shopping ban?

Good question! I am. But, I revised my rules recently to deal with travel on a case-by-case basis. I sort of had an idea that this trip might happen but didn’t have a hard timeline. I’ll get into how this vacation fits into the shopping ban next week, for my two-month update.

Now, onto some lighter subjects – I’m going on my first ever vacation!

Call for Guest Posts

Since I’m going to be on a beach for the last week of March, I’m officially doing my first-ever call for guest posts! I’m looking for 2-4 posts to help fill in the time when I’m away and to share your awesome voices with my awesome readers. If you write about minimalism, slow living, relationships, personal finance, tiny houses or anything else within these spaces – I’d love to hear from you.

I’d like posts between 800-1200 words, and you’re welcome to include an image if you wish, (alternatively, I can provide a royalty-free one).

I’ll be accepting pitches until March 16, 2018, so I have time to schedule the posts before I’m off to sunny St. Lucia. If you want to ask specific questions or to submit your pitch, please email me at here.

Have you ever felt uncomfortable spending money on yourself? How did you resolve those feelings? Let me know in the comments!

If you missed last week’s episode of Tiny Bites, all about simplifying my morning routine, you can listen to it here.

Image Credit: Tiny Ambitions

  • Daisy March 14, 2018 at 3:49 pm

    Hey Britt, your vacation actually reminds me of the expression “penny-wise, pound-foolish”. Sometimes, we’re so driven in the saving direction that we keep waiting til that mythical someday to enjoy life. It’s good to have a balance.

    I’m so happy for you getting to go on vacation with your friend – many of my best memories with my closest friends involved trips we took, and I’m sure this one will be a lot of fun for you too!

    • Britt March 14, 2018 at 6:07 pm

      You’re exactly right! The mythical someday is never going to appear, so you might as well strike a balance. I’m very excited to make this memory with my friend – so it makes me happy to hear it’s worked out for your friendships too! Thanks for reading, Daisy.

  • theluxestrategist March 9, 2018 at 12:46 pm

    I’m sooo glad you are taking this trip! Sometimes I get bummed out when I see people just saving money and staying home all the time. Money is about life experiences, too! And the all-inclusiveness will be good for you if you’re anxious. You basically won’t have to think or do anything except relax!

    • Britt March 9, 2018 at 8:22 pm

      Thanks, Luxe! I appreciate the support! And the all-inclusive will be an interesting experience I’m sure. It wouldn’t necessarily have been my first choice, but things came together pretty quickly so we didn’t have time to plan a more ad hoc experience. Next time though! For now, I am very excited to have some dedicated time to relax.

  • Michelle@ColoradoLuvHub March 7, 2018 at 5:31 pm

    I have a friend who makes great money and constantly freaks out about spending money on herself. She has some big financial goals that she’s working towards and each time she starts going down rabbit hole I’m like…you’re being crazy.

    • Britt March 7, 2018 at 7:00 pm

      I don’t think it matters how much money you can make. You can still have a believe that you’re not worth spending money on. I really believe it has less to do with money and more to do with issues of self worth and self esteem.

  • Lisa | Simple Life Experiment March 7, 2018 at 5:09 am

    What a great realisation about the ‘worthiness factor’ here, Britt! I have been there…in fact, I think I’m there right now. There’s a two-day conference I’m interested in attending in June, but it would cost me $1500+ for the ticket, flights, accommodation and food. It’s a strange feeling when the money is basically sitting there in your account, but there’s this little internal resistance telling you that surely there’s something ‘better’ you could be spending it on. You make a really good point about the actual dollar figure not being the issue here, it’s what that figure represents! Looking forward to your two-month update next week, by the way! And I’m so happy for you about your holiday to St Lucia. Sounds like you and your friend are going to have an awesome time! 🙂

    • Britt March 7, 2018 at 8:24 am

      I’m glad I’m not the only one who has had this feeling (though, obviously I wish you weren’t also dealing with it). I hope we can both get to a place where we feel we deserve to spend at least some of our money on ourselves in ways that may seem superfluous to us now.

      And thank you for the well wishes for our vacation! I’ve never been on a vacation before, so it’s going to a time of a lot of firsts I’m sure. As always thanks for reading and for your insightful comment, Lisa. 🙂

      • Lisa | Simple Life Experiment March 7, 2018 at 2:52 pm

        Yes I hope we can get to that place too! It’s always nice to know there is someone else in the same boat, isn’t it? 🙂

        Wow, your first ever vacation, Britt – you deserve it!! Looking forward to photos and your reflections on the trip.

        PS. Forgot to say in my first comment that I was really excited to see you’ll be having some guest posts while you’re away. I would ordinarily have jumped at the opportunity to pitch something to you, but my uni work is piling up at this point and I actually agreed to do another guest post earlier this week, which I’ll start to work on soon. Shame but hopefully this opportunity will come up again in the future!! 🙂

        • Britt March 7, 2018 at 6:59 pm

          Ah that’s makes me so sad! I was hoping you’d contribute. I might make an extra exception once I’m back, just so I have an extra post of yours to read. 🙂 Good luck with your uni work. I remember the ‘piling up’ feeling all too well!

          • Lisa | Simple Life Experiment March 8, 2018 at 1:14 am

            I’m flattered that you were hoping that, Britt! 😀 It certainly would have been a pleasure (not to mention honour!) to contribute. I’m looking forward to reading the contributions as I’m sure they will make great reading. ❤️

  • Tenacious J March 6, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    If you’re not spending that money to have a well-rounded, enjoyed life, what’s the point? We spend a lot of time worrying about the much-later that we sometimes forget to enjoy the now, as well, every now and again. Have a lovely, lovely time.

    • Britt March 6, 2018 at 7:38 pm

      Thanks, J! I agree – we do sometimes put off living our lives until the ‘right’ time and then somehow, we end up at the end and haven’t lived our life at all. I promise to have a drink for you on the beach!

  • Erin | Reaching for FI March 6, 2018 at 12:21 pm

    Britt, this is so good, especially the observation that your former shopping habit wasn’t about spending money on you, it was about masking other problems.

    In the personal finance world we obsess over optimizing our spending. In a way rent and groceries are spending on myself, but those are also necessities. I’d be spending that money regardless of my feelings on spending money for myself! Even my barre membership is only half indulgence since it is an investment in my health (which IS spending money on myself in a way, but then again it’s not. Clearly my thoughts on this aren’t fully-formed either!). It’s so hard to reconcile cutting “unnecessary” spending (or in your case, being on a shopping ban) with the fact that we are absolutely worth spending money on, and I wonder sometimes if there’s too much focus on trimming things as far as they’ll go (I’m totally including myself in this, too) and forgetting that money is a tool to be used, not hoarded. I’m coming to terms with the fact that my vacation spending is going to be WAY higher this year than it was last year, and that I’m okay with that. I deserve to spend time with friends and see new places, and I’m not the only one that applies to. You absolutely deserve a vacation! 🙂

    • Britt March 6, 2018 at 7:36 pm

      Thank you, Erin – I really needed to hear that. I was worried about how people would react to the post, but I’m glad that I wrote it. I definitely agree that money isn’t something to be hoarded. No matter how you slice it, you don’t get to take it with you when you’re gone. That doesn’t mean going off the deep end and spending your life savings in a week. But I do think that means we can give ourselves some room to actually enjoy the lives we claim to be living from time to time. What I’m trying to reconcile is that I’m actually deserving of spending money on myself, in a very visible, very me way. And, that’s a habit that’s been ingrained in me since childhood, so it’s not going to be an easy one to undo. The thought of spending money on this vacation has gotten easier with time and realizing that I’m going to get to spend 7 awesome days with my best friend in a beautiful place. (Also, I do recognize this is such a privileged problem to have. I didn’t say that in the post, but I probably should have). Thanks for reading!

    Hey! I'm Britt. I write about living a tiny, simple, intentional life. Because life doesn't need to be lived big.