10 Ways To Stop Spending Money When You’re Bored

By Zach Buchenau

Last Updated: January 8, 2021

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How to stop spending money when you're bored | Be The Budget

Do you struggle to avoid spending money when you’re bored?

I’ve been there! In fact, I would go as far as saying that this is a daily struggle for me too.

With the prevalence of online shopping, free two-day shipping, and a constant barrage of deals, sales and offers delivered to your inbox, it’s easy to fall into the boredom spending trap.

The good news is that there are quite a few things you can do to kick this bad financial habit. And that’s exactly why I’m writing this article.

For the rest of this guide, I am going to reveal the 10 best tips, tricks and techniques I have discovered (and implemented in my own financial life), to help you stop spending money when you’re bored.

So, if you’re tired of looking at a dull and empty bank account, and ready to fill your time with some more productive habits, keep reading!

1. Isolate Your Savings

Of all the tips in this post, this is the one that has helped me conquer my boredom spending the most. Seriously, if you don’t get anything else from this post, but you walk away and isolate your savings, I will have done my job.

So, what does it mean to isolate your savings?

Well, it’s simple.

Isolating your savings is just the act of keeping your savings at a separate bank or credit union than you use for your checking account.

I like to think of this as separating the lock from the key.

You see, when you operate both your checking and savings account through the same financial institution, it is way too easy to transfer money out of savings whenever you want to make a purchase. And that can spell disaster if you are the kind of person that tends to spend money when you’re bored.

When you isolate your savings, on the other hand, it becomes much less convenient to transfer any money into your checking account so that you can spend it. Instead of an instant transfer from one account to another, you are forced to wait a couple days before the money becomes accessible in your checking account. And trust me, when you know you have to wait that amount of time, you will be much less likely to even make the transfer in the first place.

If you’d like to isolate your savings, I recommend setting up a savings account through either Axos Bank or CIT Bank. In either case, it should only take you about 10 minutes to open a new savings account, and you can complete the entire process online.

2. Never Save Your Payment Info Online

If you can’t seem to stop spending money when you’re bored, then another great tip is to delete your payment information from any and all online retail websites.


Because the less convenient it is for you to spend money when you’re bored, the less likely you will be to actually spend it. Think about it, if you log into your favorite online retail store, and all you have to do to make a purchase is click a button, then you are seriously endangering your bank account.

It might seem like a small thing, but you might be surprised how effective the power of inconvenience can be.

3. Unsubscribe From Email Lists

Ok, this is another tip that you really need to take to heart. Sure, isolating your savings was the most important, but if boredom is plaguing your bank account, then you should make a point to unsubscribe from every email list that tempts you to spend money.

I mean, how can you expect to maintain any kind of financial stability when you are getting 20% discount offers from Bed Bath & Beyond every 20 minutes? It’s impossible.

The only real option is to unsubscribe so that you don’t get any emails at all.

This little tip could end up saving you all sorts of money when boredom strikes.

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4. Add Boredom Spending To Your Monthly Budget

It might seem a little backwards, but if you want to stop overspending when you’re bored, then you should consider adding a category for boredom spending to your monthly budget.

I know, this seems weird. But here’s the thing, if you know you struggle with boredom spending, then trying to eliminate it completely, might actually have the opposite effect you are looking for. In other words, if you try to cut all that spending cold turkey, you might last a few days, or maybe even a couple weeks, but eventually, you may end up feeling so restricted that you bust out and spend even more money than you do right now. This is not the goal.

Instead, you should just set a boundary around how much money you can spend when you’re bored each month.

That way, you allow yourself to scratch your boredom spending itch, without harming your other financial goals.

5. Set Financial Goals That Inspire You

Speaking of financial goals, if you want to stop blowing through your cash reserves every time you feel a touch of boredom, then you should take some time to set some more-inspiring financial goals. And when I say inspiring, I mean get-you-out-of-bed-each-morning, can’t-stop-thinking-about-it kind of inspiring.

Think of it this way, you should try to set goals that are so inspiring, that every time boredom strikes, your financial goal dominates your desire to spend money on something frivolous.

6. Start A Side Business

If you struggle to spend money when you’re bored, then trying to eliminate your spending might not be the best course of action. Rather, you might be better served addressing the root of the problem: boredom.

In other words, if you want to stop spending money when you’re bored, then you should figure out a way to avoid boredom in the first place.

And one of the best, and most exciting ways to do that, is to start your own business.

Now, I realize that the underlying goal of this article is to help you save more money. So, with that in mind, if you’re going to start a business, don’t jump into something that requires a hefty initial investment.

These days, there are any number of low-startup-cost businesses that you can start. From blogging to baking, to teaching music lessons, to tutoring, all you really need is some spare time and sweat equity.

At worst, by starting a business, you will be filling your time with productive habits that keep you from spending money. And that is a financial step in the right direction.

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7. Get A Second Job

If starting your own business isn’t really up your alley, but you still want to eliminate boredom spending, then you can just as easily fill your time by getting a second job.

The best part about a second job is that it doesn’t require any startup cost. Plus, you will be making extra money each month; and who doesn’t like that. Heck, if you really want, you could take the extra money you earn from your second job, and use it as fun money. This isn’t something I would necessarily encourage, but if that’s the boundary you set in your budget, and it keeps you from getting bored and spending money, then go for it.

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8. Learn A New Skill That Actually Excites You

I am a big believer that everybody should always be learning a new skill. And if you are struggling to fight off boredom in your life, then it might be time to start learning.

And when I say learning, I’m not talking about going back to college. I’m talking about taking an online course focused on a subject that gets you excited! And these days, the sky’s the limit.

Seriously, there is an online course for just about anything you want to learn. Whether you want to learn to code, woodwork, become a videographer, become a photographer, blog, speak a new language, cook, sew, brew your own beer, or pretty much anything else, just look for a course online and get after it.

I have personally taken more than 15 different online courses, and I have never regretted a single one.

If you need some learning inspiration, or you just aren’t quite sure what you’d like to learn, I recommend heading over to Udemy and perusing through all their different courses. I am confident that you will find something that sparks your interest.

10 Strategies To Stop Spending Money When You're Bored | Be The Budget

9. Reduce The Time You Spend On Social Media

If you struggle with spending money, bored or not, then you should consider reducing the amount of time you spend on social media.

Now, let me start by saying that social media is not to blame for anybody’s financial problems. Ultimately, we make our own decisions, and social media can’t do that for us. However, the more social media you have in your life, the more of an influence it will have on you.

I mean, why do you think we call people with a big social media following ‘influencers’? It’s because they have a lot of influence on how their followers spend their money.

Add in a little boredom, and what you get is a recipe for spending money.

Seriously, if this is a struggle for you, I highly recommend going 7 days without any social media. I know that might seem drastic. But if you commit to it, I think you’ll be surprised how much it will reduce your desire to spend money when you’re bored.

10. Exercise Before You Spend Money Online

This is one of my favorite strategies for avoiding any kind of bad habit.

If you want to stop spending when you’re bored, then force yourself to exercise for 1 hour before you spend any money online. Now, this doesn’t have to be a permanent habit, but if you do this for a couple weeks, or even a month, you will experience quite a few benefits.

I’m talking rock-hard abs, firm glutes, killer thigh-ceps, and a swole bank account to top it all off. (Move over Chris Hemsworth, this Dad-bod is about to take you on.)

All kidding aside, exercise is not only good for your health, but it can help shake you into a better financial frame of mind.

Like I said, this is one of my all-time favorite bad-habit-kicking tricks. I really hope you give it a try.

Final Thoughts

If you want to stop spending money when you’re bored, you should try implementing a few (or all) of the strategies in this post.

Oh, and if you do, I’d love to hear how they work in the comments.

Also, if you have any tips of your own that you employ to avoid boredom spending, be sure to plug ’em into the comments as well. We love hearing from our readers, and discovering all of your money-saving tips and tricks!

Zach Buchenau

About The Author:

Zach Buchenau is a self-proclaimed personal finance nerd. When he isn't writing about budgeting, getting out of debt, making extra money, and living a frugal life, you can find him building furniture, fly fishing, or developing websites. He is the co-founder of BeTheBudget, and Chipotle's most loyal customer.

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