Welcome to the “Budgeting Tips” series! These tips have proven extremely helpful in getting my own budget in order, and I’m confident they can help you too.
Budgeting Tip #3: Plan BEFORE The Month Begins
If you want to gain control of your money and your financial future, nothing is as powerful as planning your spending BEFORE the month begins. Most of us have had occasions where we did not plan before an important event, and everything went poorly. This was a routine feeling I experienced before nearly every test I took while studying mechanical engineering at Purdue University! Instead of studying (planning) for the test, I usually raced off to the Co-Rec where I could play basketball for hours on end. Then I would watch hours of ESPN followed by wasting hours away on other non-study-related items. Then the moment would arrive: test time. The dreadful, but familiar, feeling of being unprepared would take over. You know how it turned out, don’t you? My 2.64 GPA was a direct result of my lack of planning!
Those same poor test preparation habits also affected my personal finances. I did graduate from college with a degree in mechanical engineering, and I embarked upon a career in engineering. This came with a very exciting development – INCOME! However, without a budget, I managed to spend all of it plus some more, which I financed with debt.
The day that I started planning my money BEFORE the month began was the very same month that I began to prosper. By planning my spending BEFORE the month began, it allowed me to be INTENTIONAL with every dollar I expected to receive. In turn, I was able to anticipate financial challenges and make better choices. Instead of encountering the financial challenge in the middle of the month when my choices would be greatly limited, I was able to see them an entire month ahead of time. This gave me a lot of choices like working overtime, reducing an expense, or completely eliminating a planned event. This gave me CONTROL. Control equals AWARENESS. Awareness equals ADJUSTMENTS. Adjustments led to financial success.
Use one of our free budget tools to plan your spending before next month. You will gain control of your money and ensure that your plans, hopes, and dreams are being funded! That’s what we call a fully funded life. You can do this!
NOTE: This post is part of the “Budgeting Tips” series. Click HERE to read other posts in the series.