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Archive for March 28th, 2011

In the weeks since we gave up our cable TV, both Drew and I have slowly begun to make more changes that reflect our desire to spend more time/money/energy in areas that we really care about and less of those things in areas that we really don’t value.

For example, early this month Drew joined our local YMCA.  He and a buddy play squash twice a week there, and for months, he was just paying the per day fee each time they played (when they were playing once every week or so).  They decided to increase their visits, which made getting a membership a better solution than just paying the fee each time.  It was a pretty big financial commitment (at least in our city, where you can get many gym memberships for less than $30/month), with a large starting fee, but he figures that not only will the monthly payment motivate him to use the membership but now he can go more frequently to play pick-up basketball games and racquetball with other people. 

Another health related item that I’ve reconsidered is my devotion to hot yoga.  I love it and it’s important to me to include it at least once a week in my fitness regimen.  However, it ain’t cheap – each class is $12 – $15 depending on the studio, etc.  I have 11 classes left in a package at my favorite studio (Christmas gift) so in a couple short months I’ll need to decide how I want to move forward.  A local athletic clothing store has a cool marketing tactic where they ‘sponsor’ free yoga classes once a week at surrounding studios – it’s a way to develop brand loyalty to the clothes, and get new people in the door at studios.  With this little discovery, I can essentially double the amount of yoga I do without any added cost, and try out new studios and instructors as I please. 

Finally, and maybe most groundbreaking, I decided to downgrade my cell phone.  I’ve had a Blackberry for a couple years, and I’m not gonna lie, the iPhone is also a tempting little toy.  All the bells and whistles that these fancy phones provide are a nice time killer in a waiting room or airport, but I honestly don’t use those features much beyond that.  Plus, I don’t really care about getting all of my email the second it lands in my Inbox – I sit near a computer for most of my life and can check it every minute if I want to.  Our contract was up recently, so I just bit the bullet and went back to a ‘normal phone.’  I was surprised when we were browsing in the store that the sales associates readily refer to the most expensive phones as the better than the lesser expensive phones (as in, “when I upgraded to a better phone…”).  I think it’s an interesting observation given that in reality, these phones do essentially the same things.  Heck, I even refer to this switch as a downgrade, but it’s a brand new phone and it still able to support any and everything you could want.  My phone switch will only save me about $30/month, but it’s not so much about the money as it is about making a conscious decision about how I spend my $30/month, and I can think of other areas where I would enjoy it more.  In this arena, Drew and I have very different opinions – he really needs his email accessible for work, and he messes around all the time online.  So he remained with Blackberry, though he got the newest version for free and it’s really spiffy.   

Out with the old...

 

...in with the new

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