ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Voluntary Simplicity Money Saving Ideas for Living on a Dime

Updated on January 19, 2015

Voluntary Simplicity as a Lifestyle

What is voluntary simplicity? Voluntary simplicity is about paring down your life and focusing on what really matters. Freedom of time is the ultimate goal. Is voluntary simplicity for you? Would you like to have more time to spend with your family? You don’t need to move to the country, live off the grid or start homesteading, become a hippie or join a new age commune to simplify your life. You can begin to simplify your life now, whether you live in the city or country. You can have a richer life by clearing out the clutter.

Living Simply

Voluntary simplicity is about choosing time freedom over materialism.
Voluntary simplicity is about choosing time freedom over materialism. | Source

Emotional Clutter vs. Physical Clutter

There are two main types of clutter. There is emotional clutter and there is physical clutter. Physical clutter takes up space in our homes, takes over garages and basement and can engulf an entire house if not kept in check. Emotional clutter is harder to recognize. It creeps in slowly and takes a strong hold. Both types of clutter can cause you to feel "stuck."

Debt Free Living

Voluntary simplicity is about living a simple life that rejects the high-consumption, materialistic lifestyle that has become the American way of life. Most Americans are so focused on accumulating "things" that they lose sight of what really matters. This is the physical type of clutter. All of that accumulation and over shopping has led us to piles of debt and constant stress and pressure to pay for our affluent lifestyles. We have lost sight of what matters most, which is time freedom. Time is the ultimate freedom. It means being able to make decisions on how you spend your day.

How to Simplify Your Life

Start slowly. Work on one area of your life at a time. Get rid of clutter in your life. This can be emotional or physical clutter. Eliminate some of your “stuff.” Any items that you don’t use on a regular basis should be given away. This includes clothing, tools and even home décor items. Go through each room of your house with a critical eye. If you have not used an item in the last year, get rid of it.

Save All Your Change and Dollar Bills

Eliminate Your Debt

Eliminate your debt. Make a list of your debts including credit card debt, loans, lines of credit, student loan debt, medical bills, car payments, and any other items you are or should be making regular payments on. Be honest with yourself. Write your debt down so you can take a good, objective look at it. Make paying off your debts a priority. Get your spouse or partner on board with you. Use the Dave Ramsey Debt Snowball approach to get the debt paid off. Focus intensely on getting the debt paid down. If you have multiple types of debt you can prioritize the debt by interest rate. Check to see how much interest each type of debt costs you each month.

Simplify Your Life By Shopping Less Often

Quit buying new stuff. Focus on quality and not quantity when you make a purchase. So many items that are on the shelves at stores are cheap items that are not made to last. Before you make a purchase, ask yourself a few questions:

Is this something I NEED? If not, move on. Needs and wants are totally different. Needs are about the necessities. Needs are items you must have. You must have a coat in the winter to keep yourself warm, depending on the climate where you live. Do you need a designer coat? Could you get a warm coat from a thrift shop? Do you have five or ten coats hanging in your closet that you don't want to wear? Do you want a coat or simply a pick-me-up?

Shop less often. Go shopping in your own closet. Pull out items that have gotten buried in the back of the closet or tucked away in drawers. Be aware of the number of items you own versus the number f clothes that you wear on a regular basis.

Eliminate shopping out of boredom. No more weekly trips to Target to pass a Saturday or Sunday afternoon. The more time you spend in stores, the more money you spend. When you go grocery shopping, make a list and stick to it. Leave your kids or partner at home if they encourage you to buy items that are not on the list.

Read More Books


Read More Books, Watch Less TV

Visit your local library and check out a book. You can even take a class in computer skills, learn how to compost or start a garden in your backyard or get free tax help at your local library. There are story times for preschool age kids.

Tiny House Simple Living Appeal

Totally Tiny House Crazy

Ever since I first saw one of these Tiny Houses on a YouTube video, I have been fascinated by this movement, this trend toward paring our lives down to what we really need. I grew up in the eighties, in a time of giant houses with rooms that were rarely used (who actually eats in a dining room anyway) and walk-in closets to showcase enormous hoards of shoes and clothing. Paring my own life down to just the basics is an issue I struggle with. I'm a jewelry designer with a passion for antique and vintage buttons. My supplies have swallowed up two of the upstairs bedrooms in my house. I dream about living in a little garden shed within walking distance of my job. My reality is a 30 minute commute to work (each way) and a yard the size of a postage stamp.


Choose Voluntary Simplicity Today

I invite you to join me on the journey toward voluntary simplicity. I may not conquer all my physical clutter this month or even this year, but I am on a journey to carve out space in my life. I would love to hear your ideas and tips for living a simpler, more fulfilling life by choosing voluntary simplicity and embracing money saving ideas for living on a dime.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • heathersgreatcat profile imageAUTHOR

      Heather Walton 

      3 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      Always good to remember our greater purpose and let the little things go...take care and thanks for reading

    • profile image

      Teri Stohlberg 

      3 years ago

      Great advice, thank you!

    • heathersgreatcat profile imageAUTHOR

      Heather Walton 

      3 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      Thanks!!! I must admit it's easy to get caught up in a shopping less often and purchasing only items I truly need are a few of my short term goals.

    • amazaving profile image


      3 years ago

      Good advice! Thanks


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)