My favorite thing to do is BUDGET!!!!LOL ya right. I learned to budget when I lived in Arizona on my own and was completely independent. I literally was adulting while going to Grad School.
One thing I didn’t account for was how different California and Arizona are….expense wise. LOL
Arizona is sooo much cheaper than California. I miss the good old days of paying $16 to fill up the gas tank in my car. Now it’s almost $30, I am lucky if it’s $25. SO now I budget for gas something I used to never do. ( Clearly took that for granted in Arizona LOL)
So I’ve created different methods that help me keep track of my budget.
Things I am pretty good with are:
1. I don’t like using my credit card (that much) …..I’m old school. I like paying for things with cash. ( Especially if somethings $20 or less) I know, I know I am the lame person cashier’s hate because they have to give back change. ( I’m sorry!) It just helps me keep track of spending! If you want to blame something LOL blame Arizona for that habit! That’s where I learned it. ( Independence lol this is what it does to you)
But in all honesty credit cards make it way too easy especially when I am on Instagram scrolling through my feed and VOILA next thing I know I’m buying a dress. YES, A DRESS! I know! The funny thing is I don’t even wear dresses to work! ( and yes I know it’s good to be in debt but you don’t want to be in $100k worth of debt! And be in debt from clothes? Yaaaa that’s not worth it) Not going to lie when I was in high school I did read Confessions of a Shopaholic and I loved it but I don’t ever want to be in her shoes) anyhoooo back to my methods!
2. I STOPPED buying dresses. The reality is I work with construction companies, so basically casual clothes. I wear jeans and a nice shirt ( okay, mostly turtlenecks, it gets cold in the office) SO like WHYYYY have a TON of dresses? I only wear them on weekends soo it’s pointless trying to own like a bazillion dresses.
So budget-wise I’ve taken out buying dresses. ( Thank God! You should have seen my closet in Arizona, it was a hot dress mess) A rule I made for myself when buying clothing is that: the only exception for clothes is running shoes. ( I’m going to be honest I did buy a reflective thermal running shirt, Headband & cowl neck sweater- so I haven’t exactly stuck with that rule- I’m only human after all- but I budgeted so looks like I’m not eating out for a while) But hey! At least I didn’t buy dresses! So that’s technically a small victory.
3. Spending limit: every month I write down how much I want to spend on things for example; clothing, food, entertainment, random stuff. If I over spend in one area, it means that I take money away from something else that month. Let’s say I buy clothes for $50 and my budget that month was $25 for clothing welp! It means the $50 budget for eating out just dwindled to $25 for that month!
Budgeting is different for everyone. We all tend to spend money on different things. Some people spend more money on food while others on clothes. I tend to be the latter.
When it comes to food I am pretty easy, I’m A’OKAY with eating at home. I’ve spent years eating the same thing over and over thanks to being a poor college student ( mainly chicken & veggies) So I’m fine with not eating out all the time, one thing I’ve learned is eating in saves money, especially, at work. I pack my lunches, it saves time and money which is awesome sauce!!!
So how do you keep track of your spending?
My first method of how I keep track of my spending is I created a spreadsheet ( yes, I know dorky) of literally EVERYTHING my credit card spending, PayPal spending, Poshmark Earnings + Spending. I’ve broken it down into categories as well, to see how much I spend on gas, food, entertainment etc. ( Yes, they are different colors) Personally it helps me see a trend in the way I spend. For example; I found out I have a tendency to spend more during Spring, I have no idea why but since I’ve been keeping a spreadsheet for a couple of years now I know that and can be more conscious during that time of year.
My second method is to check my monthly statement EVERY month ( like actually take a look at it! Don’t just glance at it!) I look at my monthly credit card statements and all my receipts ( yes, I always get receipts where ever I go) It helps me make sure 1. no one is stealing my card 2. I can see how much I spent that month and budget accordingly for the next month. 3. Keeping receipts helps me see what stores I go to the most so I can budget for those specific stores. (Target! I’m literally there almost every other week)
Another method (#3) I use is the BUDDY SYSTEM! I got my boyfriend to budget with me, it’s so much easier doing things with someone else.
We constantly ask each other if we should buy this or that and we talk about whether we need it or not. So far it’s been a good system for us so here’s to budgeting. Hopefully, I become a pro at it. LOL
My fourth method is to pay my credit card off ( literally everything) every month. So if don’t have to pay interest because trust me, having to pay off my student loan was NOT FUN AT ALL. I don’t want a repeat of owing money, LOTS of money.
Hopefully my mistakes can help you! Or maybe my methods that help me can help you in your endeavors to be a budgeting babe. LOL
WELP! Catch ya later until next post.