I need to spend less but I HATE budgeting. It feels like self-deprivation. Isn't there some magic pill I can take?
From: Samantha P.
There's no magic pill but a budget isn't going to help either if it makes you feel deprived. Sounds like you could use a spending plan. The purpose of a budget is to spend less. The purpose of a spending plan is to spend for your goals. Hoping for financial freedom and security without a spending plan is like getting in the car and driving to a new place without a map or directions.
Most of us spend unconsciously--money comes in, money goes out and we have no idea where it went or what it was for. Tracking your spending makes you more conscious of your money. More to the point, it allows you to save more of your hard-earned cash, anywhere from 10% to 20% more. When you track your money according to your spending plan, you'll feel more in control of your finances. That means you're much more likely to pay down credit card debt and save money for college and retirement. And when you do splurge on a fabulous pair of shoes, it'll be because you've been doing so well that you have the spare cash.
With your spending plan as a map to your financial goals, you won't just take a left turn because it seems like the right direction. You'll take a left turn because it's where you want to go.