Hey Budgeting people,
Evaluation is everything. If you don’t review your progress and find friction points, progress is difficult to achieve.
These are some of the friction points and difficulties I came across this month. Budgeting is easy, sticking to the budget is what is difficult.
If we are open with what we were successful at and what we found to be difficult I find we can find solutions by working as a community.
The five things I was successful at this month were:
- Respecting most of my sinking funds and adjusting for the ones I didn’t
While I did dip into my emergency fund once, I didn’t dip into any more of my sinking funds.
This may seem insignificant to most. However, this is something I have found challenging in the past. I see it as a great achievement to put money in the accounts and only slipping up once.
Every time I thought about dipping into my sinking funds, knowing I had to explain to you all why I used them made me feel guilty and prevented me spending more money that I wasn’t supposed to.
I am proud that I did adjust the August’s budget, to accommodate my decision and I have learnt from it.
Next time, I will either adjust other categories that month or just say no. I did learn from making that decision and I didn’t do it again.
- Saying no, or cancelling plans when I couldn’t afford to do it
My friends over here, are very impulsive and I am introverted I tend not to discuss what my financial plans with them.
So, we do tend to only plan a week in advance – and I budget monthly. This can cause issues. However, when I realised that I cannot afford to go out with them, I declined.
- Having multiple no spend days
I had 20 no spend days this month. While when I did spend money, it appeared like I went the whole hog, I am still amazed that for 20 of those days, I didn’t go into a store and spend any money.
- Not going to Starbucks when I wanted to
A little back story here is kind of needed. I am not a huge Starbucks fan, a huge coffee fan, yes. But Starbucks I can take or leave.
For a while there though, I was suffering with some serious migraines – which I get from time to time. Along with the migraines came a sudden and persistent craving for Starbucks.
Every time I went into the car, or I was thinking about the next time I would be in the car, I had a feeling to stop by Starbucks.
I am happy to say, as it wasn’t in my budget, so I didn’t go. Sometimes it is the small wins that are the most vital.
- Getting out the house more than once this month
The last thing I am proud of, despite being a bit of the opposite the rest of these, is I am glad I went out this month. While it included spending money, it was an experience.
I went shooting (first time and last time). I went to the cinema. which I love doing. I went to a baby shower of someone I really care about. So, I had a good month in terms of socialisation.
The five friction points this month:
- Going over budget in multiple categories
Whilst I am proud that this is the best month of the year so far, in following the budget, I know I can do better.
- Using sinking funds/emergency fund
Whilst I am happy, I only did it once, I am working towards it not happening again. The dread and guilt I felt using it for something other than what is for, is not something I wish to experience again.
- There was confusion in my budget
The numbers in some categories are inflated due to the fact that I am using the previous months paycheck, but I track spending from the first.
In addition, spending with a card takes time to process. It records that I am spending money on the 2nd but I made the purchase on the 31st.
To remedy this, I am just not going to spend money the last couple and the first couple of days of the month. Using cash envelops should also help.
- Spending money when I didn’t need to
While I didn’t spend that extra $5 in Starbucks, I did spend $2 in the supermarket for a drink on the way to a baby shower which was providing food and drink.
In future, I need to have the ‘there is food and drink’ at home more with myself. Also, I need to ensure I have a drink, and potentially a snack with me wherever I go.
- Using up other items first
As I ran out of some toiletry items, which are essential, but instead of making sure there wasn’t anything else I could use; like the miniature versions I have, I went out and bought more.
Instead I used my wallet money, when I could have waited until the new month had started, if I had used my travel things first.
What are five things you struggle with in budgeting?
What are five things which you are awesome at and are proud of with budgeting?