Budgets are often a topic of dread, so the goal of today’s post is to debunk this and demonstrate how an effective budget actually makes your life better and happier, in real, tangible ways.
Every aspect of life, from relationships to achieving work/life balance are all best when healthy boundaries are in place. And it’s the same with money: there is freedom when you establish healthy limits. When you’ve got a budget, you know how much is okay to spend, so you get to spend completely guilt-free! Enjoy that Starbucks or new planner or trip to the spa, because if it’s in the budget, there’s no need to worry about spending.
You know that amazing feeling you get when you finally clean out the garage or tackle a big organization project? Imagine feeling that way about your money, all the time. Having a budget means gaining control of where your money is going, so get ready to say goodbye to a significant source of stress in your life.
There’s something about seeing that budget worksheet with all your basic necessities listed out, often with savings goals and a few luxuries on there, and realizing you really have everything you need. The budget inspires greater contentment, which is linked to long-term happiness, since it gives you an opportunity to reflect on the fact that your needs are being met.
Generous people are happy people. When you make a budget, you’re able to fund your biggest priorities. If you want to cultivate generosity in your life and make giving a regular practice, make it a part of your monthly budget.
Since a budget puts you in control, you get to set your savings priorities and protect that money from being spent on random trips to Target. You’ll have the money you need for future expenses and you’ll continue to gain motivation to keep saving. Saving for expenses instead of financing them will save you thousands of dollars in interest. That’s something to smile about!
Managing money can feel overwhelming, but a budget gives you the information you need to track your progress. Instead of relying on emotions and guesswork to make financial decisions, your budget will tell you how you’re doing from month to month tackling your goals, whether that’s achieving debt-freedom or investing for the future.
A clear plan and less financial stress translates to better relationships. When you sit down to make a budget with your spouse, you’re able to discuss your priorities, dreams, and goals. You get to talk about money in a productive way and agree on a plan together to eliminate money-related arguments.
While it might sound counterintuitive, having a budget actually helps you to think about money less than before. Once you get your budget set up, all you have to do is follow it. You don’t need to look at your checking balance every single day, agonize over expenses, or lose sleep over affording necessities.
Another way your budget will help you save money is by controlling cash flow. If you experience overdraft fees, late payments fees, and/or bounced checks, just imagine if all of that stopped! Sometimes, the trick to saving money is keeping more of it to begin with. I had a client who incurred $120 a month in overdraft fees, and since we got her budget smoothed out, she hasn’t had a single one. That’s $1,440 saved in a year, simply because she organized her money with a budget!
Finally, success in one area of life tends to run over into other areas of our lives. When you get your budget on track, you realize you’ve had it in you all along to make positive changes that produce results. I’ve seen many examples of individuals who went from struggling to thriving in their health, their careers, and their emotional well-being once they gained control of where their money was going. It’s truly inspiring!
How has a budget changed your life for the better? Comment below!