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One more step toward success

My Unintentional No-Spend Challenge

One more step toward success
One more step toward success

So, if you’re a writer, you’ll understand this. As I was writing my post for Fruclassity -the site I own along with Ruth from Prudence Debt Free – this week, I started to get super passionate about the subject of saving money. Before I realized it, I was issuing a challenge to readers to spend as little as they could for 30 days. That’s a good idea, I thought to myself after I’d written it.

Then I realized I couldn’t very well offer a challenge like that to our readers without committing to participating in it myself. Oh, crap. I didn’t mean it. I DIDN’T MEAN IT!

A secret you may or may not know about me is that I’m pretty good at pushing myself- within certain limits. I’m a total type-A that goes, goes, goes all the time. But there’s a strict circle around my “pushing myself” that never treads into the waters of “scary” or “highly uncomfortable”.

Time to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

In January of 2015, I made a commitment to delve out of that comfort zone wherever the opportunity arose. And let me tell you – it arose alright. Time and time again.I continually found myself in situations last year that challenged me to step out of every comfort zone I had on every level. Some victories brought joy – others brought tears that eventually led to joy. Although I learned so much by stepping out of my comfort zone on a regular basis, I also learned that stepping out of your comfort zone is a heck of a lot of work.

So since 2015 ended, I’ve gladly gone back into “comfort zone” thinking and pushing myself only to limits that are comfortable. I’ve made goals to ramp up my study of the Bible big time and to decrease spending even more, but only to the level that ensures my world isn’t rattled too heavily.

However, I see that I am once again being called to step out of my comfort zone with a no-spending challenge. I’ve generally avoided no-spending challenges because they bring up memories of my impoverished childhood that bring to the surface a fear I have regarding money and not having enough. I think what’s going on is that it’s time I stop fearing the lack of money, and that the spending challenge will help me do just that. But that doesn’t make it any more comfortable to face that fear and to work to overcome.

But facing your fears and discovering how they are keeping you from reaching your goals is a huge part of reaching success, no matter what the arena of goal is.

Conquer Your Fears and Achieve Success

So, my question to you is, “What hidden fears are holding you back”? What hidden messages have you been telling yourself that have subconsciously kept you from achieving all that you could achieve and want to achieve?

It’s time to break those chains and bust out of fear mode. I’m doing that via a no-spending challenge.

How will you do it? How will you make 2016 the year of great accomplishments via getting out of your comfort zone?


  1. I think the new job I’m in is leaving my comfort zone. Every day is a (good) challenge that is testing my limits of knowledge, but I’m going to walk away from it with an incredibly education (and hopefully a huge amount of savings). One of the other biggest challenges is maintaining the mindset of frugality, while my income has increased. It’s something I think about a lot lately. I suppose a good problem to have.

    • Laurie says:

      I think that’s hugely leaving your comfort zone, which is a great thing!! Whenever there’s a change like that, it’s always a balance to find where that limit is between upping your standard of living a bit but not upping it too much. As things get better financially here, I worry about that too. I think setting a solid savings rate would be really helpful – a rate that takes a big chunk of your raise without taking all of it so that you can loosen the frugal reins a bit, you know?

  2. I have a hard time identifying the “hidden fears” that are holding me back. They’re well hidden. And perhaps I don’t really want to find them. To “bust those chains”, I believe I have to take concrete small steps – that are definite and measurable. Sorry for the cryptic comment. It makes sense to me : )

    • Laurie says:

      LOL, love it, Ruth! What’s important is that you’re working on it. And you are. Terrific progress over the last three years! 🙂

  3. That’s awesome, Laurie! I’ve had those same realizations before with my writing–that I’d better practice what I preach! For me right now, parenting is definitely outside of my comfort zone because it’s all so new. But I feel like I learn more every day and it’s definitely an amazing and awesome thing (typed with a fussy baby in my arms as I also try and eat lunch… 😉 ).

  4. Miranda says:

    I admire that you were willing to push yourself out of your comfort zone. I’m someone who also takes comfort of staying in my little circle of boundaries, maybe this will be there year that I take some steps out. Good for you for making things happen for yourself!

  5. Funny enough, one of my coworkers was reminding me of how I need to push myself in paying of my student loans. He was all about putting in as much but I kept on saying, wait, what if this or this or that happens, what would happen then! Great reminder that great things don’t happen in comfort zones.

    • Laurie says:

      I SO hear you, Amanda!! That’s been a challenge for us too, so we are working on finding a balance in preparing for “what ifs” yet still pushing harder to reach our goals.

  6. Stepping out of my comfort zone is really very challenging! There’s still fear whenever I try to do this but I hope I can do this more often as based on experience, it’s really bringing good results. I completely agree with you that it requires a heck of a lot of work.

  7. Laura @ Piggy Bank Dreams says:

    Some people dread January, but I love it because it’s such an inspiring time of the year! So often, people jump into a new project or step out of their comfort zone like you did, and it’s just awesome. Come September, I’m always scratching my head, thinking, “How can I get as excited as I was in January again?” 🙂

  8. Laura @ Piggy Bank Dreams says:

    Way to step out of your comfort zone, Laurie. You’re inspiring me to keep doing the same! 🙂

  9. That’s great that you’re doing a no spend challenge – even if it wasn’t your initial goal. I’m in the process of stepping out of my comfort zone in a few areas and it is intimidating – but generally worth it. Thanks for sharing!

  10. kay ~ the barefoot minimalist says:

    I’ve been stepping out of my comfort zone so much lately that I’m seriously ready to snuggle back up into it for a while. But I love the no-spending challenge idea. I need to go and read that article! And by the way ~ HI LAURIE! Thanks so much for checking in on me. I appreciate your friendship way more than you’ll ever know! 🙂

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