The word budget is often one that creates dread in most people. I used to roll my eyes and cringe when someone would mention it. Years ago I tried to pretend that I budgeted for things. Saving and spending and going into debt was just how life was lived. I remember very clearly wanting to buy this gorgeous leather jacket but it was a ridiculous price. I was ignoring the price cause I had the money in my account and therefore I thought I could afford it. My wise sweet mother asked me, how many hours do you have to work to pay for that jacket? Guilt from that question stopped the purchase of the jacket. Years later I don’t remember what the jacket looked like or how much it was but the math didn’t add up.
This question still rings in my head when I am shopping. Yet it took me years yet to actually make peace with the budget word. I read articles and filled out worksheets and questionnaires in hopes of finding some sort of budget understanding. I hit empty account overdraft bottom many times before finally having something click. Now don’t think negative numbers in red made things turn around over night, there were tears and frustration over it all. Having to borrow from mom to pay bills but having a cute new pair of boots didn’t make me feel fabulous. Man adulting is tough.
My biggest turn around was making the decision to work hard to change it all. I began re-reading a book I had been given about 10 years prior. Money managing with Dave Ramsey became an eye opener for me. I had to read the book more than once to solidify that this was a solution for me. Total Money Makeover was an ah ha moment and it helped me love the word budget and made me feel empowered in regards to my money.
I had financial planners try to help organize things before but it never worked. I had to trip over and pick through it all only to find myself in worse trouble than I was before starting their plans. For me there is something so simple and easy about the Total Money Makeover. I truly believe it is a must read for anyone who is ready to take control and make their money work for them.
I am not here to re-write the book but my initial start up tips are
1. Decide to commit to making a change.
My hubby and I had to sit down and decide together that this is something we both wanted, it doesn’t work if only one of us in on
board this is a team effort.
2. Start your emergency fund
Define and understand what an emergency fund is for. That fabulous shoe sale does not count!
3. Debt snowball
Your debt is easy to tackle once you use Dave’s method, you see results and it feels great!
4. Understand where your money is going and reorganize to take it back
I was shocked to track where our money was going and why we had nothing to show for it. It was easy to swipe a card to get something
but we had a whole lot of nothing at all.
5. Start a cash allowance
This made a huge difference for us, we found higher value in our money instead of in a card, we were and are much more conscious
about our purchases.
6. Money Jars
Never loved jars so much, now they are filled with money for specific spending. It has helped turn our wants to needs. Do we need that new state of the art electric can opener with laser beam sensor……
These simple changes got us on the right track to a brighter financial future, it is a continual path and one that needs constant attention and commitment but one that is well worth it
Money and budgets were evil words that would spark a complete shut down in me. Now that hubby and I are on this path and making these changes we can talk about money openly and positively because we have made it ours again and are making it work for us. I hope that you can find your money empowerment and make yours work for you. Do you have tips you love to put into action?
*Gingered Life is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.ca