Hello everyone! Welcome back to BirthMay 2022! Today’s post is going to be one of my series for this month, Finance Friday! This Friday, I’m sharing my updated budgeting routine.
In case you’re new, every May I blog every day and call it BirthMay! Why? Because it’s my birth month and I’m super extra.
So, for some backstory, I’ve become very interested in personal finance! It was my pandemic thing. Well, one of many, but one of the few that stuck. In the past, I wasn’t super interested in personal finance, and was honestly avoiding learning more because I felt it was so daunting. It’s actually become one of my favorite things to learn about and it does feel so rewarding every time I can share my experience and the knowledge I’ve gained with someone else! So here’s my updated budgeting routine!
My Updated Budgeting Routine
So I previously shared how I learned to budget, and followed up with how budgeting doesn’t work for me. Honestly, budgeting did work for a little bit for me! But I’ve finally come to the conclusion that my form of budgeting is simply tracking my expenses and being more mindful when I buy things.
I’ve mentioned before that my goal every month is to make sure I have as much left over from my paychecks as possible. This is actually what works best for me! I always carefully consider each purchase. For example, I recently bought a new pair of workout leggings. Because they were on clearance and the brand at the store was discounted an extra 15%, I ended up paying $5 for a new pair of workout leggings. They weren’t my favorite, but the ones I really wanted were priced at $40 before the 15% discount, and it was just crazy to think that they were that much! I didn’t like the idea of being $40 poorer at the end of the month than I could be, but $5 was doable.
Another thing that I recently bought though was a pair of $17 shorts that were not on sale. However, I had a few other things I considered when I bought them. For one, I am trying to declutter clothing. So why am I buying a new pair of shorts? Well, because these shorts were plain black and fit a ton better than a few other pairs I have. I figured that with this one pair of neutral colored shorts, I will be able to declutter at least two pairs of shorts that don’t match as many things because of their colors/patterns. Also, these will fit much better so I will be able to get rid of the ill fitting shorts easier knowing I have a replacement already. I’ve tossed the new shorts into the laundry pile already, and the weather is getting nicer now so I’m planning to pull out the storage totes with my summer clothes and already looking forward to decluttering those old shorts!
I also have changed my budgeting spreadsheet to get rid of the budget column on the tracker! I have an overall budget that I don’t change every month, but it was too annoying to try to budget for every single individual item, since I don’t necessarily plan my purchases ahead of time. The way I do it, is I have a list of things I want/need and then, if the perfect item/price/opportunity comes up, then I buy it. For example, I’m looking for a simple, black, small, crossbody bag. I want to spend no more than $20 for it, but will pay more if I like it enough. However, no acceptable bag option has come up so I haven’t bought it. I don’t want to build it into a monthly budget then feel like I have to buy one!
There are a few things I build in that are not negotiable though. I always invest a set amount at the start of the month, so that money is already accounted for and that is helpful. I know I’m putting that money towards investing no matter what, as opposed to a random amount for food.
I have also added a net worth tracker now, and it’s honestly my favorite tab to look at. I track all my savings, expenses, investments, and more on the tracker. It’s nice to see how everything ebbs and flows, and it’s a lot better for me to look at to see how I’m doing rather than worry if I spent more on food than I’d planned for the month. The bigger picture is honestly much more helpful for me!
So that’s how I’m budgeting now! Is it really even budgeting though? Maybe not fully, but I do find that this is what works fo rme, and that’s all I care about really!
Thanks for reading!
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