If you are like most people that I have met, and frankly like myself when you are confronted with something new or unknown you tend to step back and evaluate.
You wouldn’t dive into the water without knowing how deep it is, right?
These basic instincts are there to protect us.
When it comes to budgeting there are no instinctive reasons not to do it.
Instead, we imagine obstacles to success and rationalize why we should not even begin.
The challenge is to flip those thoughts and understand they are not truth.
Truth is, we are where we are now because of our previous actions and thoughts.
If your financial life is not what you want it to be, then those actions and thoughts have to change.
Lets look at the most common myths regarding budgeting:
1. I can keep track of my expenses in my head
If you are doing a real, zero dollar, categorized budget on a monthly basis you cannot keep it in your head.
You need to be honest with yourself.
A real, well thought out budget, takes attention to detail.
Apps these days make that simple.
Even if you could commit enough brain power to keeping hundreds of constantly changing details in your head why would you not want to use that skill for other areas of your life?
2. I don’t want to worry about money all the time
I totally buy into this as a reason to budget.
When you have every dollar accounted for before you receive it, worry will go away.
You will know that your obligations are met, you will have built in your needs and your wants.
3. I don’t have time to budget
The first couple of months will undoubtedly take a few hours of committed time.
Anything you want to do well does.
As each month goes by, the time you devote to budgeting decreases because you master the skills.
4. Budgeting is too hard, restrictive and limiting
First, Budgeting is elementary school math and with apps these days it has become so much easier. Budgeting is not too hard.
A budget is simply a plan designed to turn the unknown into known.
Second, you determine what goes in your budget and your budget can be changed. The only restriction is that you only budget money that you have. I will not be able to buy what I want.
You are able to buy the things you want.
The whole purpose of a budget is to take control of your money so you c a n buy the things you want without paying for them months or years down the road.
Third, A budget gives you control, the only limit is not spending more than you have.
5. I make plenty of money, I do not need to budget
Being a high income earner does not guarantee financial success down the road.
Just as many six figure earners are living paycheck to paycheck as average income earners.
As a high income earner it is easier to mask issues related to money management, but as lifestyle expenses increase so does the need to thoughtfully manage your income.
6. I am too broke to budget
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got” Henry Ford
Not budgeting hasn’t worked right? You need direction to get out of the situation that you find yourself in. For a broke individual that direction is provided by a budget.
Let’s replace budgeting with homework and see how you would react to your children saying:
“My grades are great, I don’t need to do homework” “Homework limits my free time”
“Homework is too hard”
“My grades are so bad it won’t help to do homework”
“I don’t have time to do homework”
“I will start on my homework later”
“I don’t want to worry about my grades all of the time”
Does it feel different in that context?