Click on the link at the bottom of the page to return to Lazy Dogg’s Laziness Page.

Lessons from misers

Most people have heard of Scrooge, the miser in Charles Dicken’s classic A Christmas Carol. He’s the image people have when they think of a miser; he had lots of financial wealth but he didn’t share it and didn’t enjoy his life.

However, we can use the ideas from misers to make life better for everyone. Here are a few ideas

  1. Have you ever been given a gift you didn’t want? Did you keep it for ages, cluttering up your home, and worry that the person who gave it to you would find out you didn’t use it? Next time you give a gift, make sure you don’t do the same thing! If someone doesn’t need anything, buy them something temporary (like food or drink), or do something nice for them (like painting a fence).
  2. Learn to love charity shops! You’ll get something that’s high enough quality to have lasted, and it will be something a bit interesting and different from what everyone else has. And the fun of browsing in a charity shop, not knowing what treasure you might find, has to be experienced!.
  3. Buy charity gifts for people: many charities will let you buy someone a chunk of rain forest, or a gift of supplies for people in need in another country. Much more useful than a tie they’ll never wear, or unsuitable lingerie.
  4. Think hard about every purchasing decision. Think about the costs - something like buying a chocolate bar causes a small amount of environmental damage. If you really feel the need, then go ahead, but make it a fair trade one if you can. But maybe you can wait til dinner?
  5. Many people get into debt by trying to appear generous and extravagant. People will accept free drinks and limo rides at your wild party, but will talk about you behind your back when the baliffs come.
  6. Be wise with possessions: it’s stupid spending £800 on a sofa that you never sit on, or a lot more on a car that looks cool but you can’t really afford. Isn’t it more fun to have enough money so you don’t have to tell your friends you can’t go out with them until next pay day?
  7. Be sensible about holidays: I’ve often slept on a balcony in the cool breeze and wondered if it would be any more enjoyable sitting on the balcony of a £200-a-night hotel. I figure my way is just as nice, but a lot cheaper!
  8. Use eBay: buying second hand reduces the cost on the environment. How many things have you got that you never use any more? There’s probably somewhere out there buying something brand new when they could be buying it second hand from you. A waste of their money, another thing needlessly made by manufacturers, and a waste of your space. Stupid!
  9. Learn to enjoy cooking. That way you can entertain yourself for the evening and get a cheap meal for you and your friends too.
  10. Remember, you’re not just being a miser for yourself. And it’s not just money you’re saving. You’re making the most of all the good things - the weather, time, people, places, your body. And you’re looking for ways to do this without it costing too much financially, environmentally or emotionally.