Others assume budgeting has to be hard, take a ton of time or be the most boring part of their week. (Also not true!)
Most often though, I work with people who think they can’t be good at budgeting because they aren’t good with math. But being good at math doesn’t have a lot to do with being a successful budgeter because we have technology to do the math for us!
So what does make someone successful in managing their budget? Here are the top 5 traits you need to make your budget successful:
The best budgeters are NOT perfectionists
It’s really easy to get caught up in the details of a budget. “I’m off by $9.23! I need to be tracking every account, even the one I use 1x per year!” There is a point where the level of detail is overkill and a distraction from the bigger picture. Stay focused on what matters, don’t get caught up in the details that don’t matter.
The best budgeters are consistent
When you are tracking your money and you get behind it’s really hard to catch up in an accurate way. It’s super hard to remember what you bought at Target two weeks ago. Either you are going to spend a ton of time to get caught up and probably still not have great data, or you have to leave a gap in your tracking to catch back up. Either way, it’s a bummer. Don’t assume you will remember what you bought or that it will be easy to catch up. Trust me when I say, checking in more often makes it easier.
The best budgeters rebound fast
Everyone is bound to get a little off track at some point. That is why this stuff isn’t easy, right? Life happens. But to be successful with your budget in the long run you need to realize you are off track get back on track FAST. Bad money habits never go away for good, but your ability to catch and refocus the behavior quickly and more efficiently will help frame your long term success.
The best budgeters make hard choices
I want you to have everything you want. And the truth is you can have anything, but not everything. Successful budgeters actually take the HARD step of cutting things out they can’t afford or isn’t a priority. Some sacrifice is required to be successful with your finances. The goal is getting good at cutting out what doesn’t matter to your family.
The best budgeters find peace knowing that their system is setting their family up for success
Financial goals can take a long time to achieve, and it can feel like a really big slog at times. But to be successful you have to keep your eye on the long term prize and keep yourself motivated working towards your goals.
You don’t need a degree in Finance or Math to be good at this stuff, you just need the commitment to put in the time and the work. Anyone can tackle this stuff and become a master budgeter. You just have to want to. And you have to be in it for the long game. Financial success doesn’t come fast or even easy. But it does come. And a good monthly budget will help set you on that path.