Facing Budget Challenges?
Sticking to a budget is a lot like dieting. Sometimes all it takes to break your momentum is a limited edition Louis Vuitton handbag or a bowl of gelato ice cream in the fridge. Just like dieting, budgeting is hard to stick to. We need to watch every move, stick to our plan, and be careful this isn’t the day we don’t waste it all on a single purchase, a single food binge that would ultimately get a year’s worth of efforts down the drain.
But think of it this way: Anything worth having requires dedication and hard work. So if in a moment of blind panic, you got sidetracked from your goal, get right back and stay there for the long haul with the following strategies:
1. Treat money like you would a family heirloom.Imagine running out of money and being forced to sell your mother’s 30-year-old pearl necklace or your father’s first ever Rolex watch. Surely it won’t be easy on your heart saying goodbye to these treasures, so hold fast to that wad of cash. Don’t part so carelessly with it.
2. Don’t get trap in the vicious cycle of technology upgrade.If your iPhone 6s is still fine, what do you want the iPhone 7 for? If there’s nothing wrong with it and it works in more or less the same way with the one you’re about to purchase, then there’s no need to cough up cash for the upgrade.
The latest Photoshop version probably is not necessary if you have a good and running Leopard, the same way that a working laptop is a practical money-saver over a new one.
3. Consider yourself the priority payee.Before paying off any debt, dish out 10% of your income first to yourself. Once you start paying bills, the money you are earning may not seem a lot, but automatically setting aside one tenth of it will go a long way in giving you a debt-free tomorrow.
4. Don’t shop when hungry.Probably one of the most practical budgeting tips there is is to do your groceries on a full stomach. That way, you don’t get tempted to buy food on the go. While it’s not a no-no to splurge on food every once in a while, an empty stomach will make you want to eat twice as much and spend as much, even those kinds of snacks that do not normally appeal to you.
5. Take away choices that would make you more likely to cheat.Availability is a serious enemy of debt-free wannabes. Uninstall apps of your favorite online stores so you can’t add items to your cart at a click. Cancel your credit cards to make it more difficult for you to buy items with borrowed money. Stop carrying your debit cards and bring cash instead to limit your purchases.
A budget is not something that appeals to people, so it can be difficult sticking to one at first. Between tuition fees for your kids and monthly mortgage payments, let it be said that saving is the most expensive occupation there is.
But creating a plan and sticking to it can go a long way in preventing your interest from waning. Thankfully, the budgeting tips mentioned above can help you stay committed to your plan.