|Posted by Administrator (blb) on Aug 03 2010|
|Newsletter Articles Blog >> group one|
I'm constantly battling with my budget. There have been times when I have felt so free within the constraints of my budget. But just as I start to feel good about it, it seems I let go of the discipline and before I know it I am lost out at sea in a storm of impulse buying or just not knowing where my money is going. In reality it is the same each month...$X on food/going out/rent/bills etc...but, somehow it is so easy to lose track of it and feel totally insecure. Ideally, none of this would matter in my little fantasy utopia...but here on earth, it does. And in my particular little world where I don't have a lot of what we call expendable income, I have to be careful...Unfortunately I don't have a lot of workable tips for you...but here are some things I think about when trying to beat the budgeting blues...
1. Storing coins is always a bonus because someday you can cash it in for an unknown amount of cash, which is always nice.
2. Allowing for certain amounts of frivolous spending is helpful in feeling free within a budget. It's good to know how you enjoy spending that free time/money and being creative within the limits of how much you allow yourself.
3. Is it better to go grocery shopping once a week? Or with a more daily food need shopping attitude? It could be argued either way. I've been doing the once a week method...This is a good method for the Farmers Market crowds too - especially with the CSA boxes. It requires a little forethought, but can save you lots if you plan your grocery shopping trip around your farmers market visits and then try to stick to the food you get each week! This lessens the amount of food that goes bad or gets piled up in your cupboards and freezers.
4. Don't forget birthdays, holidays, trips etc. It's nice to have some extra cash set aside for these things that come up outside of daily routines.
5. Don't get suckered by sales and deals too easily. This is an easy way to buy more than you need and go over budget even with things you eat or will use...Try to check out ads ahead of time, but otherwise, stick to your budget limit at the grocery store...you'll feel much better. The rush of impulse buying doesn't last long!
6. Give your self room to learn - if the first month doesn't go how you imagined, adjust the budget, try again. I haven't checked in on my budget worksheet in a couple of months now, but without giving myself a hard time am planning to start a fresh this month! It's never a bad time to try especially these days when our pocket books are feeling thin.
7. Avoiding credit card spending is always wise. I've learned this the hard way like most people. And paying down credit card bills as quickly as possible is always a good feeling too! Even at the expense of saving as much sometimes...those interest rates and fees are brutal and only get worse unless you are paying it down.
And last but not least...
8. If you're brave, talk with a friend (or family member) about being budgeting buddies. Having some accountability always helps...helps to enjoy the freedom, but also maintain the discipline.
Last changed: Dec 15 2010 at 12:09 PMBack