Once you have created your budget as per my previous post, use these tips to actually stick to the budget that you created.
Now that you have taken a winning step to overhaul your finances and created a monthly budget for your family…
It’s time for you to make sure that you know the tips to actually stick to the budget that you created.
No doubts, it’s not going to be easy.
You will feel stressed.
You will feel like giving up.
But if you follow these simple tips mentioned in this blog post, it will make your transition easier and smooth.
Tips to Actually Stick to the Budget:
1. Be Reasonable:
No wonders, you can’t repay all your debts and do your lifetime savings in a month (unless you win a lottery or jackpot ;))
So, don’t even try to limit yourself on all things all at once.
Take baby steps. List all the actions that you can take to improve your finances. Prioritize them and take a step or two at a time so that you are not really hard on yourself.
Focusing on one or two goals at a time will help you in creating good financial habits for a lifetime and making it easier to actually stick to the budget.
2. Be Realistic:
It’s really a good practice to be mindful of your finances. But, this doesn’t mean that you deprive yourself of necessities.
For instance, don’t set your grocery budget too low that you are eating the same food items over and over or you don’t plan for an entertainment budget and start living your life in a coup.
The more realistic you are while setting your budget, the more enjoyable is the process of saving money.
3. Dump Your Credit Card:
Credit cards are convenient but at the same time, they make you feel rich, even if you don’t have that money in your bank account.
Make it a habit to pay everything you spend in cash and carry only the amount of cash you budgeted for.
It is always painful to hand a stash of cash out of your wallet than swiping a card. Hence, avoiding credit cards will definitely help you avoid big non-essential purchases.
4. Track Your Expenses Frequently:
There are so many daily expenses that you don’t track and these expenses do add up faster.
Hence, don’t wait until the end of the month to track your expenses. Rather, log your expenses on a daily or at least weekly basis.
It will help you track expenses that can be avoided immediately rather than waiting until the end of the month.
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5. Make a List:
Are you one of those who goes wild on the shopping trips and buy all the fancy stuff they find in the store?
Well, this can really hurt your budgeting efforts.
You need to get in the habit of making a list when going out for shopping. Take some time to make a note of all the things that you actually need for your house, grocery or for yourself and family.
It will also help you determine how much money you actually need for necessities which will help in creating a budget for the coming months.
6. Lesser Shopping Trips:
Another thing you need to work on is making lesser shopping trips. You don’t need to head out for shopping for every other item you run out of.
The more shopping trips you make, the more you will spend money on non-essential things out of compulsiveness.
Designate one day for all your shopping. Also, make a list of all the things you need and if you forget something to add to your next week’s list.
7. Plan your Meals:
Grocery shopping is the main expense that can throw off your budget very easily.
If you don’t plan for your meals in advance, you will be picking all the exotic ingredients of the aisles that you might not even use. Also, you will be eating out more often since you are not sure what you are going to cook.
The simplest way is to create a weekly plan for what you are going to have at every meal and make the list of ingredients accordingly. You have to make a plan for the initial three to four weeks and then you can keep rotating the same meal plan.
Don’t forget to treat yourself and plan for a meal or two outside as well.
8. Set a No-Spend Day:
There is usually no day when you don’t end up spending money here and there. It can be as small as buying a coffee from your favorite coffee shop.
So, to break this habit, designate a no-spend day every week. Start with a day and then move on to two to three days each week.
You will be surprised to see the extra savings from these no-spend days at the end of the month.
So, these are the 8 tips that will help you actually stick to the budget. Just remember to take one step at a time to create good financial habits for a lifetime.
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