On the first you get paid. By the 5th (or 2nd!) you’re out of money.
How does this happen?
– I have too little money!
That could be true, but somehow you’re surviving. Take out the feeling for a minute and think. What did you spend it on?
If you can’t remember, if you can’t account for every dollar, then you need a budget. In fact, if you ever handle money (and even children get allowance) you’re going to need a budget.
A budget is simply grabbing your money, and telling it what to do. Each portion of your money, each dollar, needs a job to do until you get paid again.
What these jobs are, is all your decision.
In the movie “Hecho en México”, about 18 minutes in on my Netflix, they talk about mindfulness:
All our daily lives can be mechanical or conscious. Walking, praying, loving… everyting can be done consciously. And when we do it consciously, we.. acquire a much better ability to comprehend and understand.
A great deal of our thoughts are unconscious and automatic. And there’s a second level of processing or consciousness, in which you become the spectator of your own movie.
Budgeting is a bit that. So far we have unconsciously spent the money. I want this, I want that, ooh that looks great! – whoops, I’m out of money. But no thought went to figuring out if we needed any of that, no thought went to the electricity bill, the phone, the rent, or the gifts at the end of the year.
You may say “this is too basic”, but it really is like that. We all “think” we budget for everything, but there’s simply too much for one’s head. If we instead put it on paper, on a plan, we will know where it’s going and versus where it should go, and we can start making adjustment.
Be the spectator of your own financial movie, and write a script. That’s what budgeting is.