Back when I was healing my own relationship with money, I encountered all sorts of resistance from others any time I mentioned budgeting. “Eh, I have enough money, I don’t need to track it.” Or on the other side: “I don’t have enough money to budget.” “Budgeting cramps my style,” or the reverse, “budgeting makes me feel bad about myself.” Now let me say, not everyone has to budget. But I know that even for those that aren’t paycheck-to-paycheck, or deeply in debt, budgeting can still revolutionize personal finances for most people if done well.
Most budget methods are restrictive, but don’t have to be that way! You can create budgets that are flexible, friendly, and aligned with your values. And if your budget is like that, many of the old excuses melt away!
I don’t have enough (or have too much) money to budget
Nonsense! Here’s a little secret – good budgets don’t track your money, they track your goals. Do you have goals? Great! Then you can use a budget to maintain, track and attain your goals, at least as they pertain to money! Do you want to get out of paycheck-to-paycheck? Great budgets help with that. Do you want to make sure your money is making the maximum impact in your life? Fantastic! No matter what that looks like, whether it be retirement investing, saving for the luxuries in life, or creating a charitable foundation, budgeting is the first step!
Budgeting makes me feel bad about myself
Now this one can be a hard thing. When you hold up your Money Mirror (i.e. look at your budget) it will reflect your current reality. And often we aren’t where we want to be, yet. It can be painful to look at. First of all, know that it’s true for everyone, especially when you’re starting your money mindset journey. Second of all, taking a clear look is the first step to healing your relationship with money, and creating a new reality that you are proud of. If you can get into the habit of taking a clear look at your financial situation, you will find that lots of other things start falling into place. I promise you, the pain will fade over time, to be replaced with freedom and control!
I don’t need a budget, I’m doing just fine
This certainly is true for a lot of people. But I argue that clarity can make your currently comfortable financial situation and turn it into a spectacular one. Take a moment and really look deep inside yourself. Are you getting everything accomplished that you would love to? Are you saving for every goal that would make you happy, as quickly as you would like to? Are you providing for your family in every way possible? Are you contributing money to every worthy charity and cause that is important to you? If you said no to any of these things, then a budget might help you get closer to these loftier goals that you have for yourself. Who knows, you may find yourself one day starting a charitable foundation of your own!
There are tons of reasons why people don’t want to budget, but I think that the benefits far outweigh the emotional stress that it initially puts on you. What do you think, are you ready to give budgeting a try?