So here's my social/ personal/ financial experiment for the next 7 days (starting today, going through next Thursday): I currently have $16 in cash in my wallet, mostly in ones, and several dollars in quarters and other spare change. I put both my credit cards and my debit card in the back of the cabinet above my fridge. And I'm going to try my hardest not to use them until next Friday rolls around. I resisted the urge to go stock up on groceries and do a bunch of shopping last night, and I'm also going to try not to do a spending binge when I'm done, because that would kind of defeat the purpose of the experiment. I'm calling it "going off the grid financially."
The point isn't really to save money, although I would imagine that will be a pleasant side effect of the experiment. I think it's really about trying to be resourceful and find contentment with less in a culture that constantly pursues more. In far too many countries in the world, if a person had $16 and change to spend in a week, they would be considered unbelievably rich. Also, I think I've gotten far too accustomed to thoughtless spending--whether it's going out for lunch way too often or buying clothes I don't need. I'm hopeful that this week, if I succeed with the challenge, will help me to reset my financial compass and appreciate the fact that I'm blessed with all I need, and more. Even without my credit cards.