21 Frugal Ways to Reward Yourself Right Now
Like many of you, I’m busy. I have a full-time career, a husband and a home to take care of, and I play daddy to two adorable dogs. I don’t know how I do it, but I do.
Sometimes, though, I need a break — a little reward for staying semi-sane.
You probably do, too. If you’re at your wit’s end or have accomplished something great recently, take some time to institute one of these wallet-friendly ideas to reward yourself right now. (See also: Big List of Things to Be Happy About)
1. Soak in a Bubble Bath
Is there anything more soul soothing than filling up the tub with warm water and bubbles and soaking until all your cares melt away? To make the experience even more enjoyable, there are bathtub caddies that will prop up a book and hold a glass of wine for the ultimate in relaxation.
2. Pour a Glass of Nice Wine
The world has had a love affair with wine since about 4500 BC. That’s because just one glass has the power to calm your nerves and reduce your stress. This time of year, pour a healthy portion of red, curl up on the couch, and sip until your heart’s content.
3. Relax in the Park
There’s not much time left to find a comfortable spot in the park before the weather takes a turn for the worse, so pull up your piece of green and drift off to dreamland while you can.
4. Read a Good Book
“Good book” is relative. Right now I’m reading The Walking Dead: Compendium One, but maybe that’s not your thing. Take a trip to the library and browse the extensive selection for a title you never knew you wanted to read.
5. See a Movie
Seeing new movies is one of my all-time favorite pastimes. AMC Theaters offers $6 movies every day before noon, so on weekends I often catch an early flick all by myself. The theater is never crowded, which means I won’t have anyone in front, in back, or on the sides of me talking and fidgeting the whole time.
6. Order In
Turn off the stove and take a load off. Pick a menu from the pile and order from a place you’ve been dying to try.
7. Call Someone You Love
When you’re busy, any time you can connect with friends or family for more than five minutes outside of a holiday is a reward. Think of someone you enjoy talking to and schedule a 20-minute catch-up conversation.
8. Buy Something Small
Retail therapy is another one of my favorite ways to reward myself. So I don’t go overboard and feel a sense of remorse instead of satisfaction, I set a limit on how much I can spend before I leave the house. It keeps my wallet in check, but I still get a little something I want.
Exercise is more of a chore for me than a reward, but I know plenty of people who absolutely love going for a run. If you’re one of those people, lace up those sneaks, pop in your ear buds, and head out for a few laps.
10. Catch Up on Your DVR
Watching all my favorite shows in one sitting is a total reward for me, usually reserved for a lazy Sunday afternoon. Nothing better than enjoying a reward with the fridge so close, right?
11. Schedule Cuddle Time With Your Honey
If you’re both busy career people, cuddle time can be scarce. Whenever my husband and I have extra time, we’re right next to each other in bed, holding one another close.
12. Go Someplace You’ve Never Been Before
I bet there are lots of places in your neighborhood that you’ve been meaning to stop by. But one thing or another always happens that prevents you from getting there. Let today be the day that you finally stop in.
13. Sell Something on the Internet
What’s more rewarding than making a little extra money? Find something around the house that has value and post it for sale online. For large items, Craigslist is the best bet for a quick return. For small, more valuable items, let Amazon or eBay sell it for you.
14. Search for New Music
I love having the latest tracks on my iPod, but I can never find the time (or remember) to download the hottest new songs. As a reward, maybe I’ll take 20 minutes today to see who’s making waves on the music scene.
15. Make a Gourmet Dessert
Tie on that apron and mix up something decadent and delicious. Don’t worry about the calorie count, either — this is a reward.
16. Indulge in a Guilty Pleasure
Whether it’s watching trashy TV or reading a gossip rag, kick up your feet and get lost in a world full of the ridiculous.
17. Schedule a Quick Grooming Session
Maybe you want your eyebrows waxed or perhaps those hands and feet need a little TLC. Give your favorite body specialist a call and schedule an appointment.
18. Play Your Favorite Game
Sometimes, to get through the workday, you need a little “you” time. Play Words with Friends on Facebook or another of your favorite games during your lunch break.
19. Turn Old Clothes Into New Clothes
Whenever I clean out my closet, there are so many things I don’t want anymore. But before I throw them out, I think to myself, how can I repurpose these? My biggest trick is turning unwanted pants into new shorts. If you have a good tailor (or you’re handy with a needle and thread), there are lots of ways to make something old new again.
20. Tap Into Your Creative Side
Pull out your box of crafts and paints and make something extraordinary that you can gift or hang on your own wall for you and your guests to admire.
21. Take a Nap
This is at the bottom of the list because I think it’s the ultimate reward. It’s extremely rare for me to even entertain the idea of taking a nap, so when the opportunity arises, I seize it. Naps are a great reward because you wake up refreshed and ready to go. Turn off the TV, shut the blinds, and let yourself get some rest. You deserve it!
Have even more ways to reward yourself right now? Let me know in the comments below.