She Hath Done What She Could in the Home

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Budgeting is fun!

How do you like that title?!  I'm sure many people would not agree with this statement, but I'm finding that following a budget is very liberating and empowering!  We've always tried to live below our means, and I've had a budget, but I didn't always "check" myself each month to see where I stood.  Now, I've started entering EVERYTHING I buy into a spreadsheet by categories and at a glance, I can see where I am with my budget in any given area.  This allows me to know if I can spend more in that category or learn to do without until a later time.  
Crystal is starting a new budgeting series over at Money Saving Mom and I look forward to reading the tips.  Budgeting is helpful in many ways including the following:
1.  It gives you peace of mind.  
I hate the feeling of impulse spending - finding that name brand item at a huge discount.  I can always justify the expense in my head - "I'll NEVER find this item at this price again - It's too good to pass up!"  But, when the credit card statement rolls in the next month, I don't feel the same "rush" I had in the store when I bought the item!  Following a budget gives you peace of mind.  There are no "surprises" showing up on your statements because you have accounted for every dollar spent.  
2.  It empowers you.
The worst feeling is coming to the end of  the month, looking at your bank statement and saying "Where did my money go?"  It doesn't SEEM like you did that much, but your money is gone.  What do you have to show for it?  Can you say you remodeled a room in your home?  Did you take a great vacation?  Did you pop extra $$ into savings?  Most likely, you will answer no to all these big questions and have to admit to the fact that you "nickel and dimed" it away - $4 latte here, $3 do-dad for the kids there, $10 shirt on sale get the picture. Having a budget changes all that!  You decide where your money is going.  It's a great feeling to get to the end of the month and see surplus left over in any given category that you can apply elsewhere to meet your goals more quickly.  
3.  It makes you happy.
We are told in the Bible to be a good steward of our blessings (Lk 16:10-ff).  Following a budget is a tool that helps you fulfill this commandment of the Lord.  Knowing you are following God's will makes you happy!  The Bible teaches God will reward those who are faithful with more blessings than they can count.