As anyone will tell you, one of the easiest ways to waste your money down the drain is by buying lunch every day at work. Buying a sandwich, salad, or whatever other monstrous concoction you’ve tricked yourself into thinking is appropriate to eat for lunch on a workday is going to slug you $8 – $15 daily, and that adds up.
It’s understandable, though! It can be really bloody hard to ease into a routine of making lunch and not get bored of it. I, for example, start work at six in the morning, and I’ve often found it really bloody hard to motivate myself to get into the groove. Also, waking up at a quarter to five every morning makes me want to destroy my body with heinous ‘food’, but that’s neither here nor there.
But all is not lost – there are easy strategies you can use to get yourself into the groove of being a certified Lunch Packer. I will happily bestow them upon you, so that you might have some extra coin at the end of the week you can immediately spend on booze anyway.
MAKE BIG BATCHES FOR DINNER
This sounds absurdly simple, but its also a good way to get yourself in the dinner mindset (my new self-help book Dinner Mindset is currently awaiting publisher interest). I used to be pretty awful about making my own dinner – ordering takeaway a lot, and always finding I had ‘no time’ to make myself dinner.
Get yourself in the mode of making a big dinner a few nights a week where you’re sure to have a lot of leftovers, then pack ’em away in a tupperware container, which you should have one million of, as per this GIF.
SET AN ALARM
Nothing like a specialised phone alarm to either make you feel like you’re organised, or anger you so much you actually become organised out of a misplaced sense of spite.
Sett yourself a morning alarm to remember to pack food, so you don’t hit halfway through your commute and suddenly remember you have no sandwich in your bag, and must therefore purchase yet another chicken wrap, depriving you of $10 of eventual home deposit money, leading to some bloke in The Australian writing a column about you.
It sounds simple, but it can get you in the groove of things.
MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR TAKEOUT ORDERS
I’m not going to tell you not to order takeout. The inexorable march of technology has made it super easy to press a button and have someone materialise in your living room and feed you onion rings and fan you with a huge palm leaf while you bingewatch GLOW.
If you’re ordering in during the week, consider pushing the delivery fee and the economy of scale to the limit by picking up something a little bigger so you’ll have leftovers you can cart into work the next day.
Warning: you absolutely run the risk of also eating that food at the same time, meaning you will have less money and also be bloated and self-loathing. That is a risk you will have to take.
STOCK UP ON FROZEN MEALS WHEN THEY’RE CHEAP
Frozen meals are an easy way to bring something cheaper from home when you’re not keen to prep something yourself. They’re often pretty small and maybe not that filling – depending on what you’ve bought, obviously – but it’s an easy way to do it.
Your supermarket will always have this stuff on sale at some point, so its a great idea to stock the hell up when you can. You’ll be the envy of your friends, pawing listlessly at a Lite N’ Easy butter chicken meal while they spend all their dosh on some delicious sandwich. Sucked in!
Photo: Mean Girls.