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  • Straight Talking

Budget, budget, budget


Being a young mum, I always struggled with money handling, saving and spending. I battled with trying to get what I believed was the necessities and my actual desires. Having a baby, I felt I missed out on the phase where I was able to work and spend on myself for a while. So I always thought I never had enough for myself but wanted to ensure my child had it all, so I found myself pretty much being flat out broke with nothing in my bank account after a week of being paid.

At first, I tried to find different ways of avoiding this. Due to emergencies, I always needed to have to buy something. You never know your child could get sick or need milk, nappies etc. So I changed my pay to weekly, but that still wasn't helping. I always found a way of just spending or lending. I didn't have much to borrow, but that wouldn't stop me.

It took me years to get a system that kept me grounded and understood that I couldn't be reckless when spending, and until now, I still struggle. Still, I've matured and grown enough to understand the importance of budgeting and saving, especially now I have my own place. I believe me having more responsibility and being aware of consequences if bills aren't paid on time or just knowing that if I don't pay the gas bill, I won't have hot water, etc. So I can say for myself that it's given me more of a push to get my spending In check.

With saying all this, I would round up my point up and say that saving is important due to your child's future, for them and things they may need like school uniform and unexpected expenses that can come from nowhere. Also would be great for family holidays, bulk food, clothes shopping as kids have crazy growth spurts that could allow you to spend more than you can afford that month. There is also their future, university, mortgages and more.

For yourself, it could be your car broke down, birthday celebrations or trying to buy your first home. Lastly, one that will stick with us for a long time are things like pandemics. That comes out of nowhere and puts you in difficult predicaments that others may not be able to help or help others.

What I did to better my spending is, have two bank accounts. One for bills that come out in direct debits, so I'm not worried and making a lot of calls to different companies to pay separate bills. My other account is divided into spending and savings. So I have an amount to spend weekly or monthly and a certain amount I put away monthly/weekly that builds up.

Another way I would suggest is writing out all your expenses and seeing how much you spend on what and go back and look at last month's expenses and always see where you can do better and try not to overindulge in going out to eat for example. This teaches you more discipline and being able to say no to yourself when you have a random urge to order a pizza when you've done food shopping, and you can put a pizza in the oven instead.

Also remember, needs are different from wants. Understandably, you want to treat yourself from time to time. Factor that into your budget to get yourself something once in a while. We all deserve it and stops it from going over budget, which is also where savings come in; it pays to have that little extra just in case!

I hope this was helpful in a way, but if you have any questions or would like more ways to manage money comment down below x

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