A grocery shopping list helps your time management, prevents duplicate purchases and keeps you on your budget.
What makes a good shopping list?
One that gets you back home with what you intended to purchase without that "Duh!" moment when you realize you forgot something. But, what is the purpose of keeping a list, whether written or digital when you grocery shop?
It saves time
Even if your list is made up of items that by necessity require you travel to multiple places, getting it all done at once is efficient. With many lives stressed to the maximum with too few hours in any one day, getting your shopping done gives you a mental lift.
It can save money
For items you don't need immediately, keeping them on your list helps you buy only when you see them on sale, either in an ad or in-store as you go up and down the aisles. A running list with items you could use helps you keep your cupboards stocked with your staples as well as products you know you'll need in the future, at prices that will make you smile.
It focuses on needs, not desires
While it's fun to splurge and buy something you don't need, perhaps as a treat for you or your family, that should happen on occasion but on a regular basis. Save time and money and stick to your needs. Have company coming and have promised them a specific dish when they arrive? Make sure you don't get sidetracked.
It keeps you on your eating program
For those of us who are trying to lose weight or keep what we lost off our bodies, having the important things in your pantry, fridge or freezer can keep you from being tempted to go off program. Without your favorite low fat frozen snacks, the vats of ice cream the rest of your family digs into will tempt you. Help yourself by making sure your products are always within reach.
It helps avoid waste
How many of us have thrown out food that is perishable because we bought an item we already had and couldn't finish the duplicate before it went bad? I see a lot of hands up out there. Once you get in the list habit, if it isn't written down don't get it. You'll be happy when you stop wasting money and food.
For those that like order and are computer proficient, consider this suggestion. Create a template list matched up to the aisles or sections of the grocery stores you use most. While that sounds like too much work, the benefit will come from the list seeming to walk along with you through the aisles as you go about your weekly shopping trip. Insert the items you need from each aisle and have fun.
Do you have any other reasons you like to use a list or some tips for us? Please use the comment section below and helps us all out.
Image: Wikimedia Commons/US Navy personnel with their grocery shopping list in the store.
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