8 Ways to Stick to Your New Years Budget
If you wish to be more budget conscious in the New Year, now is the time to start thinking about how you will go about achieving your goals. Luckily, there are many ways you can stick to your budget without feeling painfully deprived. Look below at 8 ways to stick to your New Year budget, and see how simple it can be to reach your financial goals and stay on track when the New Year hits.
Here are 8 budgeting tips to get you started!
1. Create a budgeting binder.
Staying organized will be important as you start your budgeting journal. Keep a simple binder where you can track your spending, track bills, record income, and save receipts. Your binder will be the command center for all of your earning and spending and a great way for you to feel in control of the money coming in and going out.
2. Track your spending for two weeks.
Now that you have created your binder, track your spending for two full weeks. This means write down every single penny you spend. Because every dollar adds up, it is important to be vigilant and write down EVERY expense. At the end of the two weeks, take the time to place each expense in a category (mortgage, utilities, food, gas, education, clothing, entertainment) then add up your totals for each category.
This process will give you an overview of where your money is going and what your spending habits are on average.
3. Create a vision board of what financial peace means to you.
Take a piece of poster board and create a collage of what financial peace means to you. You can cut pictures out of magazines or draw your own. Does it mean more time with family? A better night’s sleep? A happier spouse? Few credit card bills? Your collage should represent you and the goals you wish to achieve.
This way, you have a visual reminder you can look at anytime you are thinking about abandoning your budget and your goals.
4. Let your family and friends in on the secret.
Telling the people who are close to you that you are on a budget is important. This way, they understand why you may not be able to go out to dinner as much or take that girlfriend’s vacation this year. If they know your financial goals, they can help encourage you instead of tempting you!
5. Go back to some old fashioned money saving tricks.
Now is the time to go back to basics and really save some cash. Consider some of those old fashioned money saving tricks such as baking from scratch, eating at home, clipping coupons, shopping sales, and turning off lights when not in use. Again, every penny counts so now is the time to be proactive about saving.
6. Find cheap or free hobbies.
If your favorite pastime is shopping, now is the time to find a new hobby. Look for activities to enjoy instead of shopping. This could be crafting, reading, inexpensive coffee with friends, or exercising. Look for things you can do without spending a lot of money and watch those pennies add back up.
- Learn the difference between wants and needs.
Even adults need to be reminded from time to time. Strongly consider your wants and needs. Take the time to evaluate each purchase as either a want, or a need, and buy accordingly. Take an inventory of all the items you have bought and never used, and use these as motivation to not make the same mistake again.
- Take time to notice the small victories.
If you are used to grabbing fast food for dinner a few times a week, take the time to enjoy a meal cooked at home for less. This is a victory and should be noted. When you pay off a bill or pay down some debt, reward yourself with a family trip to a local park or inexpensive ice cream. Take the time to pat yourself on the back when you reach the small goals.
As you can see there are all sorts of ways to stay on budget in the New Year! Consider these 8 ways to stick to your New Year budget, and see how they can help you stay on track for the long haul!