Budgeting Is A Swear Word

I was asked to be on an expert panel for the Family Resource Agency Parent Training meeting. They asked me to speak on Budgeting. I know that’s a familiar word that most people use, but I hate that word. I prefer Spending Plan. I like to know that I can spend money, as long as I plan to spend it. Budgeting sounds restrictive. My Scotch-Irish ancestry flairs up and I think, Don’t tell me what I can and can’t do. So, Spending Plan sounds like I have control of my finances.

So, here’s what I do. I make a list of my expenses. I have one list for my fixed expenses and one for my personal expenses. Every two weeks when the paycheck hits my checking account, I automatic transfer my personal expenses into sub-accounts at my credit union. I bank with TVFCU. I REALLY love my sub-accounts. I have 10 of them. I then label each account. Here’s mine: Food, Vacation, House, Car, Husband MSM, My MSM, Boys, Daughter, Date Night With My Honey, and Christmas.

The reason I separate my fixed expenses from the personal is to stop stress from occurring. I want to make sure I have the money to pay the utilities, taxes, and phone bills. If I want to buy clothes for my kids or go on a date with my husband, I don’t want to feel guilt or not have the money. So, I sat down one time and figured out how much to put in those accounts. Then the automatic transfers take away my headache. If I want to go get a hair cut or have lunch with friends, I go to MY MSM and see if I have money to do it. I don’t feel guilty about planning a vacation because the money is there when we are ready to go.

So, some of the people that I meet and talk to about their finances will say to me, “That’s great, but what if I can’t afford to  transfer money in to those accounts on a biweekly basis?”

  1. Have a garage sale
  2. Save your tax return
  3. Pick up an extra job
  4. Save your Christmas and Birthday money from parents/grandparents
  5. Sell your crafts on websites like Etsy
  6. Be creative with ways to earn more money

Whatever you choose, remember separate your fixed expenses from your personal expenses and fund it in a way that works for you. Don’t be restricted by the conventional ways you’ve been taught.

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