Say it with me: "Budget". According to debt.com, over two-thirds (68%) of all Americans do not use any kind of formal budget to manage their personal finances. When it comes to this statistic, I'm begging you to make yourself a part of the 32% that DO. If you want to win with money, you have make it behave. This is what a written budget does. It's you telling your money what it's going to be spent on, instead of wondering where it went. Pretty simple, right?
The problem is the word "budget" is surrounded by perceived negative connotations (painful, restrictive, etc.) and honestly, this couldn't be further from the truth. A budget just means you have a plan for your money, and you know exactly where it's going. If you really enjoy a fancy coffee drink each morning, you can budget $100/month for fancy coffee drinks. Does that sound restrictive? Once you've determined that's a priority for you and it works within your income and expenses, go for it! As long as that $100 is spent the way you have it designated (budgeted) to be spent, that is what matters. So rather than being painful or restrictive, the budget actually brings incredible freedom and peace into your life. It allows you to spend money certain ways without any regrets (or spousal fights) because that money is being spent on purpose and in an agreed upon way.
In the end it really boils down to this: you have to manage money, or it will manage you. If you live a financially sloppy life for too long, eventually there will be no time to recover. You will be forced to work way past the age you planned to, simply because you will NEED that income to survive. At that point, money will be managing you - and you'll be a slave to it. This does NOT have to be your future. Budgeting is not hard or painful, but it is crucial for you to accomplish your financial goals and set yourself up for a prosperous future. Be intentional. You can do this!
*Does this resonate with you, but don't know where to start? Baseline Financial Solutions can help, and we're only a click away. Our one-on-one Financial Coaching will teach you how to control your finances, quickly pay off debt, save an emergency fund, and finally get to a place where you mange your money, instead of it managing you. CLICK HERE to send us a message or call (605) 252-5972. Baseline Financial Solutions, LLC is located in Aberdeen, SD.