I’m not going to lie to you. Budgeting sucks sometimes. It sucks whenever you don’t have the money to do whatever it is that you want to do. But you know what sucks even more? Not knowing you don’t have the money and spending it anyways…yeah, I’ve been there and done that a few too many times.
I’d love to tell you that once you get the whole “budgeting” thing down that you’ll never have another problem budgeting but the truth is, you will.
You’ll get lazy and complacent. You’ll get busy and forget about it. You’ll be just too tired or you’ll “do it tomorrow”.
Yeah, I know all of this because I’ve been here and have done this one too many times and honestly, I did it recently.
I got lazy. I got all, “oh we have money” and totally forgot to budget and then we had our big money fail – you can read about here in-depth – that costs us nearly $10,000 in one month and oh hey, when it rains it freaking pours.
Shortly after we started slowly recouping from that craziness did my darling daughter, with ninja-like skills that only a two-year old can possess, launch my phone across the room and I knew the moment it hit the floor it was shattered.
My phone has been incredible to me the past two years. I’ve found it at the bottom of the toilet twice (okay, I’ll admit it, once was because I forgot it was in my back pocket and yeah, it fell right in the toilet 😬) and the phone still worked amazingly well. I’ve even dropped it on the garage floor, in the parking lot, and dropped it down the stairs and the phone still survived unscathed!
But it was no match for that of my little pistol Charlotte…why the heck did that girl have to take after me???
Seriously, how DOES a two-year destroy something this fast??? She’s lucky she’s cute.
So now, since we literally do not have the room in the budget, I’m swallowing my own pride and living with a phone with a very busted screen. And I’ll be living with it for awhile because I don’t anticipate having the money to pay for a new phone for at least a couple of months.I'm swallowing my pride and admitting I failed to budget properly. @jessifearonClick To Tweet
Which of course, admittedly makes me sad because, honestly who wants to walk around, talk on, and attempt to swipe without glass in their fingers a phone that has a shattered screen? Nobody that’s who. But this isn’t an emergency which means money from our emergency fund will not be used.
This isn’t a reason to run out and open a credit card (if you’re new here, we haven’t had a credit card since 2013) to pay for a new phone. And at the end of the day we’re talking about a phone that’ll run us about $250 (this is the one I’m looking at – let me know if you have experience with it; I love reading reviews!).
It stinks having deny myself a want (yes, a new cellphone is a want not a need). I don’t like it and I’m sure you don’t either but I’ve coached several families through this process and this is the hardest part for them – overcoming their wants.
I’ll hear (and I’m even guilty of saying them myself) things like, “but we don’t spend on any wants! Everything is a need. We’ve cut as much as we can. I don’t know how we’re going to make ends meet.” And then of course, you know how the story goes, somehow the money disappears but we have somehow managed to pay for a new pair of jeans we “needed” or fancy family photos because Christmas is coming up.
We sometimes struggle to see our wants for what they really are – wants. We somehow manage to convince ourselves that they are needs when in fact they are just wants that we want so badly that we justify them to ourselves thus convincing ourselves that they are in fact needs.
Will it suck to have to go without something that you really want – especially if that something makes your life easier or just honestly, makes you feel better? Yes, it will suck, but you’ll be thankfully you sucked it up once you have more wiggle room in your budget and you avoid sinking yourself into debt to buy it.
So, now it’s your turn. Got any encouragement for me or for others out there struggling to keep focused on needs not wants?
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