Money can't buy happiness. Maybe that's true, but whilst we wouldn't say no to existential fulfilment... sometimes we just want to chill out and enjoy the moment!

Behavioural Science teaches us that, as humans, we're wired to prioritise short-term gratification over long-term satisfaction. At Plum, we're all about promoting healthy financial habits, for when your human nature needs a helping hand 🀝  

So... the next time that impulsive urge to splurge strikes, we want you to be armed with ideas for extracurricular activities that won't break the bank 🏦

Get Some Exercise πŸš΄β€β™€οΈ

Ok, it's a sensible one to start! We do a lot of talk about financial fitness, but we felt we ought to begin by looking after your physical health too. The great thing about exercise is that you don't need to join a fancy gym to do it. You can nip out for a quick HIIT session in the park, blow the cobwebs away with a blast on your bicycle, or (if that all sounds a bit energetic) just get out for a gentle stroll πŸƒβ€β™€οΈ

Explore the Area πŸ‘€

For many people, a few pounds in their pocket means one thing... travel time 🧳 And whilst the many benefits of travel are too great to even begin to list, it's also normally the first thing to be deemed frivolous when we start to feel the pinch. So go remind yourself of all the cool stuff that's right on your doorstep! You might even find some unexpected inspiration for the next addition to your bucket list.

Get Social πŸ‘¨β€πŸ‘©β€πŸ‘§β€πŸ‘¦

However tight your social circle, there will surely be times when the difference between disposable incomes within the group can causes tension. Chances are, if you're reading this you may have already experienced times when you wished your pals would be a little more considerate when planning paid activities. This is a chance to try out some free local activities that may also allow you to meet new, like-minded people. Check your area for meet-up groups with similar interests.

Pick Up a New Craft πŸ‘©β€πŸŽ¨

You may be reading this thinking, "I don't do hobbies". Β Fair enough. Perhaps a passion for trainspotting would have found you already by now, if it was going to do so πŸš‚ It's never too late to learn a new skill though. Creativity is free after all! So if the last time you picked a crayon was at school... perhaps you've forgotten what you're missing out on!

hugh macleod quote

Soak Up Some Culture πŸ›

Unless you're looking to see a particular exhibit, many museums only ask for a voluntary donation on entry. Obviously it's nice to support them by making a contribution... but your karma can probably take the hit just this once, if you're really short of funds. So, broaden your horizons! πŸ€“ As well as museums, you may be able to find all manner of free matinees, open mic nights, or student performances that you can check out completely free.

Do Some Good πŸ‘

We may be on a budget, but that doesn't mean we can't still give something back. So whether your karma needs a boost due to all the museums you've taken advantage of (see above), or you just feel like being a good citizen, the volunteering opportunities out there are almost endless.

Reconnect With Nature πŸƒ

If you're feeling restless, then getting outdoors for some fresh air is a great place to rectify that. There's a million things you could do now you're out of the house... but how about taking a break from 'doing' at all?! If you're feeling open-minded, you could try the Japanese practice of shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing. The principle is that you can regain perspective by simply basking in the calm surroundings β€πŸ§˜β€β™‚οΈ

Be the Host With the Most πŸ₯‡

If you don't have the budget for nights out on the town, fancy restaurants, or the cinema, then take matters into our own hands! Host a game/movie night, or potluck dinner party (everyone brings a surprise dish) for your friends.

Free Your Inner Worm πŸ“š

Does the book-worm (if you wondered where we were going with that) inside you crave new recommendations? Do you wish you had someone to rave about the latest page-turner with? Then start a book club!

Stick the Boot in πŸ₯Ύ

Whether it counts as 'fun' may be subjective! But what it lacks in excitement is more than made-up-for, because this suggestion will actually help you earn more money! So, collect up your unwanted junk and throw it in the trunk ️🚘 It's time to engage in that great British tradition... the car-boot sale.

Fine-Tune Your Finances πŸ”§

It was a lack of funds that started your quest for cheap entertainment, so it seems only fitting that our final suggestion be something to help rectify that predicament! For many of us, this one may sound the opposite to fun. But that's the funny thing about finances... once you take the plunge and get started, the blinkers lift, and the process can become strangely addictive. Perhaps even fun! πŸŽ‰

If you're looking for some help with your finances and would like to learn more about how Plum can help, then you can check out our website.

You can signup to Plum for free here.