Litia Talks About Work, Family And Shopping

Being a Bridge Technician is not easy .It comes with lots of responsibilities and demands a lot of your time. And being a woman in this male dominated field means
24 Dec 2014 11:29
Litia Talks About Work, Family And Shopping

Being a Bridge Technician is not easy .It comes with lots of responsibilities and demands a lot of your time.

And being a woman in this male dominated field means extra burden as you need to figure out how to balance work with your family.

As for 29 year-old Litia Frances Seru, the responsibility is nothing she could not handle. Her priority is to provide the best for her ten year-old daughter besides other things.

So when she is out working on bridges, crossings and jetties around the country, she is at peace knowing that her daughter’s food supplies are in stock.

This week, this young lady from Rukua in Beqa shares her shopping experience and a few advises on shopping to also help you save.


According to Miss Seru, family budget is how you measure the income the family needs in order to attain a secure yet modest living by the standard specific cost of living such as housing, food, transportation, health care and other necessities.

She says she draws up her budget on a monthly basis and in order to live within her budget, she ensures that she sticks to her shopping list.

She also compares prices in all supermarkets before going out shopping.


Grocery Shopping/Marketing

Although she has a busy schedule at work which involves a lot of travelling, Miss Seru ensures that she provides the best for her daughter with healthy nutritious food for her diet.

She does her grocery shopping fortnightly. However, she visits the market on a daily basis to get her supplies of fresh fruits and vegetables.

“I don’t like to keep my vegetables and fruits in the fridge, I like it fresh which is why I visit on a daily basis.”

She visits the market too every Saturday morning to shop for seafood lunch.


Shopping Advice

Here are some shopping tips listed by Miss Seru that will help you to save money and not to overspend.

– Shop with a list. This is my number one tip for good reason. Many people overspend or buy things they don’t want, don’t need and never end up using because they haven’t prepared properly.

This is your hard earned cash and precious time you are spending – it’s worth a few minutes of preparation, don’t you think? Sure it is (and remember, you’re worth it!). So, before you set off on your shopping trip, prepare.

Review what you already have – in your closet, cupboards, home or garage, then write a list of the ‘gaps’ you have and the needs this item will fill. Make sure they are genuine needs – not frivolous wants (there’s a big difference between the two). And finally, remember to use that list when you shop! That list will be no good scrupled up on the bottom of your bag or jammed into your pocket. Use it and only buy things that are on that list!

– Set a budget. Budget. This is important. Many people overspend on things they don’t want, need or use because they had no parameters around their spending – they just went ‘hell for leather’. Not a smart way to shop.

– Pay with cash. we pay 20 – 50 per cent more when we shop with magic plastic, whether it’s using a credit or debit card. There’s something about that magic plastic that can make us feel like we’re using Monopoly money, play money. Like it’s not real. Unfortunately, those credit card fees are very real! So once your list is prepared and you have a realistic budget you can stick to, withdraw your funds in cash and use only that cash for this shopping trip. Paying with cash feels more “real” and that’s what we want

– Set a timeframe. Don’t allow yourself to meander around a shopping Centre in an aimless fashion. Many people use shopping in a loll about fashion, whiling away an afternoon in their favorite mall. Not a strategy

I would promote or advocate. If you want to shop smart, this isn’t the way to go – no meandering shopping! Set a specific timeframe that you will complete your shopping in, and once that time is over, it’s time to head home. Your time is too valuable to spend it mindlessly anyway – once you’ve bought all you need (and nothing you don’t), stop shopping and turn your attention to something else for the day.

– Pick the best time for you. Shopping can be a fatiguing and stressful activity if you don’t shop at a time that works well for you. Shopping when the malls and stores are most busy can lead to shopping fatigue where you end up fractious and irritable – not a state in which smart shopping usually takes place.

Remember that our physical environment affects us and overcrowded, jostling environments like congested shopping centers rarely bring out the best in anybody. So, pick a time to shop when you are going to be at your most alert and positive. And make sure that you take regular breaks or shop for shorter periods to avoid becoming fatigued.

– Don’t shop when you are tired, hungry, lonely, bored or upset. This is not an exhaustive list of the emotional states that lead some people to over shop and end up buying things they don’t want or need. But they are some of the most common emotional triggers that prompt people to shop unconsciously and therefore not smartly. If you are feeling any of those emotions – you are tired, hungry, lonely, bored, and upset – don’t go shopping. Do something else until you feel on more of an emotional even keel.

– Ask “do I really need this?”Too many of us buy impulsively with no thought to what we need or even want. Our hard earned cash and even more precious time is wasted on things that have no place in our closets, our homes or our lives. One way to short-circuit the impulse buying cycle is to imagine you already own the item you are considering buy.

Fast forward through the ‘thrill of the kill’ and imagine that this item, the one you are holding in your hand right now, belongs to you: you purchased it and now it’s yours. Imagine it in your closet/home, really see it there.

Now consider: are you still excited about it? Or has the shine worn off it just a little bit (or a whole lot)? So many of us don’t stop for even a moment to consider if we really need this item, and so we end up taking home things we never use. What a waste.

– Remember that the sales person is there to sell to you! No matter how friendly or pleasant a sales person is, here is the fact you cannot avoid: they’re in it for the sale. Yes, they may care that you walk out only with items that suit you and that you will use. But they want you to walk out with something.

That’s what they are there for – to sell you something, or to maintain a relationship with you whereby you keep coming back. That’s their business. Sales people, no matter how charming and helpful they are, aren’t there to be our friends. They may engage in friendly behaviours, but their purpose is singular: to sell us something. Today. Be mindful of this so that you only buy items you need and will use – not because an effective sales person talked you into it.

– Don’t buy just because it’s on sale. It is possibly responsible for more impulse shopping than almost any other word! Remember that a bargain is not a bargain if it’s not you, doesn’t fit correctly, you don’t love it, or it doesn’t fill a legitimate gap you have and is therefore a real need.

Spending money on a $20 shirt or shoes or make-up or a DVD or scented candles or a Batman clock or anything else that you never wear (or wear only once) or use is a waste of that $20. We justify it by saying “oh it’s on sale, it’s only $20” but those $20 add up.

You wouldn’t throw $20 out the window, so don’t throw your hard earned cash out the window on items that appear to be a ‘bargain’ due to their discounted sale price. Only buy items on sale when it’s something that is on your list and is within your budget.


Clothes Shopping

Miss Seru does her shopping once a month. “There are two girls in the family so of course we do our shoes and clothes shopping to keep up with the latest trend and style.”

“I always keep money away for our closet monthly shopping.”

She suggested that in order to save money, one must go to local markets and make full use of your smile and bargaining tips to get the best deal.

“Shop for good quality that last long and not on low cheap used clothes and shoes that you might wear once or twice and doesn’t last long.”


On a lighter note

She lives in Pacific Harbor and travel to Suva to work daily. She works at MWH Global, a global firm set up in the country to help Fiji Roads in building a better Fiji.

She is a structural bridge technician – she deals renewals and repair works of bridges, crossing and jetties.

One of her major projects will be completed soon which is the new Natovi Jetty. Natovi is used as the main link between Vanua Levu, Ovalau and Viti Levu. It is understood that she also helped in designing the Vatuwaqa Bridge currently being used among other projects.

Miss Seru is the only girl in a family of three children. She loves water sports, swimming, scuba diving and most of all baking and cooking.



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