I know by now you have heard a lot about budgeting. Almost 90% of books written on finance and related money matters cannot skip a chapter on budget. This is because it is be very crucial and is the very core of financial management.
If you are new to my blog, I too have already written articles on budgeting covering some of those core things like:
- Using your one month income as a trial month by being honest with yourself when tracking your expenses. Essentially what you are wanting to do here is gathering data about your spending habits and where your money really goes.
- Also I have written about zero based budgets where you need to motivate why each expenses deserve space on in your income.
- Then I wrote about budgeting for festivities which few of us do not heed hence we get broke in January.
- Finally , I wrote a more recent one on how to survive your mess in January.
So we are at that time of the year where you really can start anew. For me, I tend to do well the first 6 month of the year with the budget but as the year go by, I loose focus. But I am always glad that by the time I loose that focus, I have accumulated something.
As we are just a few days from pay day, we had our second budgeting discussion of the year. The first discussion was about how we will spend the last few cents of December’s salary that was left over to get through January, and now we are looking at what our savings goals and spending goals for the month are to be able to start off well in the new year.
Last night though, I realized that a you cannot do a budget and just forget about it. We kind of deliberated a lot about the costs that are going in the budget last night by looking at what we are expecting to receive, what we will save and how much will be left behind but just as I was taking a shower this morning, I realized that a few things have already changed from last night.
My budget excluded some of the followings:
- I just forgot there is a contribution that I need to make at the end of January for an event I am invited to.
- I was also overruled on a planned expenditure that I thought we were on the same page, which unfortunately did not turn out that way.
- I will also be going home in the middle of the month and I need to take something as a gift home.
- I actually told my friends we will have a singing braai at my house and this too was not even anywhere to be found
- There was also money that was left that I did not allocate to anything. This I thought might be a good idea but actually just create room for overspending.
Those are just a few of the things that proves that we should not be budgeting when we already have the money in the bank account. You will fool yourself that way.
My plea to you is that financial fitness will not come just like that. You can also not delegate it to someone else, therefore if you want to see an improvement you will need a game plan and that starts with a budget.
So have you drawn up your budget? If you cannot stick to it alone, maybe find a budgeting partner. This could be a spouse, a child , a sister or even a friend. That way you are better motivated.
Improving your financial situation is not about how much you earn, it is about how much you can keep. The more you burn, you could literally be one “pay day” away from being bankrupt.