I have a confession to make. For the first time since getting rid of our line of credit, I had a financial blunder. I have been pretty on top of keeping close track of all our spending; however, I must admit I had a slip up. Last month, we were fortunate to have guests visiting (Traveling Pat!), and then it was my birthday, then Mother’s Day. I had this little fast growing pile of receipts I had not written down in my sticky note budget. Needless to say, like my old ways, I always presume there is more money left in our account than there is when I write everything down right away.
For some reason, and this has happened to me before in my life, life happens, there are celebrations and fun things going on, and I feel like I deserve a little break from my regular responsibilities, which means I get, uhumm lazy… sigh. The biggest difference between then and now, instead of having a line of credit that can grow increasingly negative, the sting of the overdraft charge is enough to push me back on course. I strongly dislike paying a fee for no reason. I would much rather spend the 10 bucks taking my whole family to Starbucks than handing it over to the bank.
My system is not leaving any extra cash in my checking account than I have planned for budgets. Everything that needs to be put away for long term things or savings comes out right away so that I don’t spend it. The aftershock for me is having to transfer hard earned savings back into my checking because I messed up. That really stings me too.
When I realized it happened, I did have 2 minutes of internal growl, worry about nothing that makes any sense, and an urge to somehow blame my husband for his spending even though he had in fact perfectly left all of his receipts for me. Instead, I resisted, and only allowed myself 2 minutes of negativity. That’s growth for me! After which I decided to move forward, do better, and remember to budget in things like birthdays better.
The blessing behind it was I had a very well stocked Vegan pantry going on so I did not need to buy as many groceries the following week, which helped me even out my overspending. My husband told me to figure out exactly what our next budget was so we could take out the right amount of cash so this can’t happen, to which I replied I promise I’ll do better and stay on top of writing it down! The threat of having to use cash all the time stirs up the germaphobe in me, making me think about how dirty money is, when the truth of the matter is I’d just rather use my debit card and keep careful track.
I’m not going to lie, whether I deserve it or not I am still patting myself on the back for my progress Not beating myself up about it too much, not passing the blame (that’s the hardest!) and deciding to get back on track with a good attitude.
Thanks for allowing me to share that with you, friends!
I’d love to hear your thoughts ?
What helps keep you on track with your finances?