Budgeting to have more fun

Financial Health

Budgeting has gotten a bad rep over the years. When you think of budgeting you probably think of limiting yourself in some way – skipping a night out with your mates, grabbing a Maccy D’s instead of indulging at that exquisite restaurant you love, or having to fight the urge to buy that cute top you saw in the window on your way home from work.

Well, we’re here to set you free by letting you in on a little secret. If you plan ahead, budgeting can actually reduce stress in your life and allow more time for you to have fun! Everyone is in different situations, making different amounts of money, and having a different level of debts, bills, and responsibilities. A fresh graduate is not going to have the same budget as the Collins family next door, with 5 kids and a house to look after. None the less, the benefits of budgeting can be reaped by everyone. Breathe a sigh of relief after you read these three simple tips on creating a budget that enables you to stop worrying and start enjoying yourself!

Plan Ahead

Planning ahead is absolutely key if you want to have a budget. Each month, take a look at your salary, bills, groceries, how much you want to save, and any other obligations you may have – then access how much you have left to spend on things you enjoy. Be realistic with yourself about how much money you need to get through the month. This allows you to make informed decisions on how much you can spend on dinner with your friends or if you can afford to go to that football game. Now you can enjoy yourself when you’re out, knowing where your money goes instead of wondering where it went!

Spend Money on the Important Stuff

Think about what you really want and make sure you have the money for it. Do you really need that new phone case? Could you meal prep at home, instead of going out for lunch every day? Think about things in the long run and try to save where you can… because they do add up! Saving these little bits lets you spend more on things that are more important to you. Practising a little self-control has never been a bad thing!

Don’t be afraid to say no

If you really can’t afford an outing with your friends, don’t be afraid to say no! More times than not, if you offer an alternative that you can afford they’re up to do that instead. Offer to watch the football at home, rather than at a pub. Or instead of having a girl’s night out in London, offer to organise a camping trip. There are many less expensive options out there for nearly any activity, you just need to put some effort in and find them!

If you need help planning your budget, there are various apps and tools online that can help you keep track of your savings and spending. Mint.com is a great one to get you started, and it’s free!

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