I am not really sure what I have been doing lately other than taking care of my kids, getting out to enjoy our summer, keeping the house clean, housework up to que, and my weekly goals.
Now I think of it, I have been cleaning a ton, donating stuff, and organizing. I’ve deep cleaned ours cars, the freezer, fridge, basement, and every other room. I am ready for the next big project or adventure although I haven’t quite come upon it yet. Usually, it naturally presents itself and I have all faith it will. I’ve been reading a couple of books this summer, too. One book Millionaire Next Door has been particularily interesting and has made me re-access how I am spending my money and how I can budget even more effectively.
The bottom line of the book is that it is more about how little one can live on than how much one makes. Over half the millionaires of America earn less than a six figure income. What they have in common is that they 1.) are meticulous at budgeting 2.) spend way less than what they make regardless of how little or much it is 3.) they invest.
How can one spend so little when so many “needs” present themselves? This is the question I ask myself. I don’t want to constantly cut myself short of living the good life but at they same time, save up for those big ticket items and live with financial security?
Reading this book lately and thinking about the subject of wealth has also helped inspire me even more to think outside of the box. Here are 3 simple rules of thumb I have thought of for myself that I would recommend to you. Here are the three B’s.
1. Brainstorm to use what you have. Instead of thinking up what you need or want and what you will need to purchase to accomplish it, take a slightly different angle. Think of what you have and how you can use it to meet these needs. My parents were incredible at this. For example: Recently, I really wanted to redo the decor of my house. I decided to just move things around that I already had. I tried to make it into a game. A couple things that were in the basement, I brought upstairs. Then I brought a couple things from the living room upstairs to redecorate the master bedroom. I then rearranged furniture and added only one thing new in the end to tie it all together. I am loving it! It looks totally different and the one thing new I added I tried to use frames I already had and buy the rest on the cheap at a thrift store. There is definitely a time and place for new but just don’t let it be your auto response. If you can rewire your brain to try to solve problems with what you already have, you will save your self much energy and time in addition to money.
2. Buy Used. Yes, just do it. Every time you do actually need something think of how you can buy it used. Sometimes it takes more patience. Be prepared for this. Don’t run away, yes, I am talking to you. Typically, when I want something I want it now are you any different? To wait, is like asking me to drink castor oil. Are you kidding? Not that you should drink caster oil, but I beg you to try to exert some patience with buying things that you “need” (other than food and shelter).
For example, yes, you need some new work out shoes. The ones you are using are getting really worn and if you let this thought pass and forget about them you may cause yourself injury with using non-supportive soles right? There are so many things we can say to ourselves to feed the I need it now voice. Trust me, I know. But, just try it and wait. Don’t live off the gut impulse feeling that you “need” it now and in effect rush off to the store. With patience give it a chance to settle in for a while so you can be 100 percent objective about it. Then do something else and set it aside. Sometime these “need” will pass and you will see it wasn’t really an issue after all. Or if it really is than it will be in the back of your mind and the problem will start to work itself out. What I mean is this example with needing new work out shoes was just what happened to me recently. I told myself I needed them about 3 weeks ago but I also told myself I would just hold off. Then, last week I happened to stop at a garage sale and there was a pair perfectly in my size that looked super cute and they looked practically brand spanking new. They were only 4 dollars. Wow! This is not some bogus example, it happens all the time and could happen to any of us. Another possible answer is that you decide to clear out your closet one day and find an extra pair that are in good shape you had forgotten about about. Sweet. Patience works, just try it PLEASE. Don’t live off cave man-like impulses. Come on you can do it! You can!
3. Budget. Don’t worry, I am going to stop at three as to keep it straight forward and simple. Access your budget. Set in your mind exactly what you want to spend on each category based on previous history and what you know is do-able. Keep those numbers in your head. Don’t be embarrassed to ask to put a few things back at the grocery store. Who cares what they think. You may even be inspiring the store teller to be better themselves by simply being honest and saying you want to keep it at a certain amount to keep within your budget. That being said, you need a good money management software. I love Mint.com. It is free and automatically updates with your bank. There are many different and safe management systems. Research it and do it.
Go you! Thanks for reading my article. Go get more control and be the author of your own destiny. God will help you, he wants us to be self-reliant and strong. YOU ROCK!