|Putting the Budget Puzzle Together|
Why do we shrink from the word “budget”? We just don’t like being limited in any way. We want our cake and eat it too. We want all the candy in the candy store. We know this is unrealistic, but the fantasy of “having it all” continues to dominate our psyches. What can we do?
We can adopt a mindset of prioritizing our spending. That way we achieve what is most important to us and don’t feel quite so deprived. Change the word “budget” to “spending plan” to feel like you are an adult in control rather than a child as victim of a foreign system imposed from some financial authority. If you feel like a child you will rebel and work against the budget. Instead, be the author of your spending plan and be proactive to make it work for you. Consider it a work in progress and make adjustments along the way to reflect your needs. No more fantasies, just goals that you can work for step by step to make a reality.
While you can call this a spending plan, it includes saving as well. It’s really a way to allocate money to meet your goals, but an “allocating plan” doesn’t roll of the tongue so easily. Include an emergency fund and saving for your goals in your plan to really achieve success.
Our credit consumer culture has dominated our minds for too long. Take a look at what Valentine’s Day has become to see how even love is defined by what is bought. It’s time to define your life in ways that reflect your values, independently from Madison Avenue. Why let someone else define your life?
Life is not one trip to the amusement park after another. Daily life can get into a rut. Instead of using retail therapy, try some fun activities that don’t cost a lot. We know that things don’t make us happy, but memories do. Get outdoors for some free exercise and “take the nature cure” to any doldrums.
Entertainment can be inexpensive with a little planning. If your friends keep suggesting activities that don’t fit into your spending plan, take the initiative to suggest/plan activities that you can afford. Get creative! Your friends may welcome some new ways to have fun.
Spring is almost here. Take the new season as a chance to make fresh plans for your money and your life! You can enjoy some of the best that life has to offer as long as you prioritize! Remember the saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” So get some plans going that will make your priorities happen for you!
That’s a good start for making a “Savings Plan” that you can work on a bit at a time. Follow these tips and rake in the savings!