We’ve all seen them – the little old ladies religiously checking items off their shopping lists as they negotiate the aisles of the supermarket. But if you’re tempted to think that their need to write everything down is due to failing memory, think again. These canny women know that planning their weekly food shopping and sticking to their lists is a great way to ensure that they buy only what they need and that they won’t face an enormous bill when they reach the checkout.
Numerous things conspire to part us from our cash whenever we set foot inside a supermarket. That “elevator” music, for example, is playing for a reason, and companies spend millions of dollars to make the packaging of their products as irresistible as possible. Even our own impulses can work against us, causing us to load up on things that we could really do without.
While taking a few minutes to plan your menus for the week and list the necessary ingredients might seem to take some of the spontaneity out of mealtimes, it does mean that you won’t be tempted to spend on takeout when you discover midweek that the refrigerator is empty. In addition, it allows you to budget in advance for your weekly requirements and will help you to avoid those expensive impulse buys.