There are two types of people in this world: those who budget and those who don’t. To some, budgeting can feel like a diet—restrictive, stifling, and boring. You can plug your numbers into the spreadsheet, but if you don’t customize the process and change your mindset it’s just some numbers on a paper. Try these tips and shifts to makeover the art of budgeting and finally make it work for you!
Know Thy Self
Start by listing your priorities. Make sure this list reflects who you are in all your uniqueness. Obviously bills, food, and basic needs come first, but what else is important to you? What do you get excited to spend money on? Yoga classes? Books? Lululemon? Drinks with friends? How do you like to treat yourself? Whatever it is, include it in your budget on some level.
If you stick to it, you can indulge in the things that bring you joy and make you, YOU.
Old Budget Vs. New Budget
Make it fun by challenging yourself. Look at your spending for the past three months. Take the average for each category (grocery, entertainment, transportation costs, etc.). That’s the old budget. Then challenge yourself to spend less in one category to start. For example, if you choose grocery spending, buy store brands instead of name brands or try a couple meatless meals to save some cash. See how creative and thrifty you can become!
Purge the Clutter and Excess
Once your house is decluttered, you will want to keep it that way, which will help curb impulsive spending. Clean your closets, drawers, pantry and other storage spaces. Don’t stockpile dry goods—it often leads to wasted food and money. As for all other items, Marie Kondo, author of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, asks one simple question: does it spark joy? If it doesn’t, she teaches readers to get rid of it. Apply this joy method to spending as well. Don’t buy it unless it truly brings you joy.
Spend time each day being grateful for what you have. You can make it a tangible practice by writing it down if that helps you show up. Studies show that gratitude can curb the need for instant gratification and spending. Gratitude leads to feelings of abundance rather than lack and neediness, which often lead to spending. Decluttering paired with gratitude opens the door to clarity and calm…and keeps your wallet closed!
Remember your WHY
When you feel frustrated with your budget, take a moment to remember why you’re doing it in the first place. Maybe you want to get rid of debt. Meditate on how it will feel to no longer carry that burden. Maybe you are saving to send your kids to college. Visualize giving them the gift of a future and an education. Maybe you’re saving for retirement. Picture your future, free of worry about money. Always remember your WHY when you’re feeling like you want to scrap the budget!
If budgeting feels generic, restrictive, and boring you’re not alone. Make it as unique as you are. Get your heart behind it while practicing gratitude for what you already have. These little adjustments and mental shifts may be all you need to finally make your budget work for you!
© 2022 Silver Disobedience Inc.