Budgeting and Getting By

Every few months, I will write out a budget. Sometimes it’s just a monthly budget, sometimes it’s 6months and sometimes it’s a whole year. I do this because I think money scares me. I’ve seen what life can be like without money and I have also seen the struggle money can cause.

When I was really young I lived with my dad. Money was always tight and on a weekly basis my brothers and I were at each others throats for the last juice box or the last granola bar. When I lived with my mom, I saw the difference money made. It meant I could play sports and join clubs. It meant the fridge always had milk. Although, to be fair, grocery shopping and meal planning was rarely a concept my family got behind.

Now, as I am an adult and make my own money, I think I’ve developed this fear of not having it. So I make these budgets. I do it so I can see all the money that has to go out, all the money that will be coming in and perhaps how much I can put aside to ease the fears I have. Typically my budgets look good.

I have an emergency fund. This is money set aside in case anything were to happen. If my house burnt down, if I lost my job, that kind of thing. You should aim to keep 3 to 6 months worth of money in there so you know in a worst case scenario, you have that pillow to fall on.

When I deduct my pillow from my savings I start to factor in my monthly income and monthly mandatory expenses. Then, the amount that’s left gets divided up for other things like savings, school books for next year, additional costs I haven’t considered, food, money for a new laptop, etc. Suddenly I don’t really have any money left. That’s alright though because I’ve already covered the bases for what I need.

My parents like to ask me where my money goes. The way the question is phrased makes me feel like a shopaholic in their eyes. But, in my mind, I have no money. I have set it all aside for something so that I can’t spend it. I have a budget for everything and everything I need is considered. This way, when I’m out in the world and I see a cute dress or a yummy looking pie, I tell myself I’m broke. I tell myself what I have budgeted. “No, you can’t have the pie because you only have 75$ for groceries today, also you’re too fat, get away from the pie”.

I know this post was probably not very interesting but I think it’s interesting to see how my mind works. How I see my life and my funds and maybe it will help someone else look into their spending habits and their lives and say “hey, maybe if I think I’m broke, I’ll save more for what I need or want in the future”.

Tha-tha-that’s all folks 🙂




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