Friday, February 4, 2011

Trying to not get too Frustrated

We are $11.31 over budget. There isn't any money in the future purchases envelope. I'm pretty frustrated about that but I'm having a hard enough time just sticking to the $12 a day budget. I'm finding it to be, will power wise, practically impossible to get on board a $10 a day budget. That's still the plan though.

I'm really struggling right now. We went into overdraft yesterday. There was a $30 gas charge that I had forgotten about because it didn't post to the account as pending. It just cleared (3 days later).. So far my goals are progressing VERY slowly... if that word is even applicable. I hate the financial aspect of life. I'm absolutely an adult, no question about it but all this learning self discipline combined with budgeting so strictly and stumbling so often is making me feel like a child. No wonder it's practically impossible for my husband to cut back on his spending habits. I'm thinking about this money thing practically all day every day and I'm having to fight myself tooth and nail just to almost squeak by following the rules.

It's funny I feel very strongly compelled to say, "I need a vacation!" But isn't that what got us into this mess in the first place? I mean, it seems like many of the adults in this world just want life to be a vacation, as luxurious, worry free, fun filled, and un-laborious as possible. Life just doesn't work that way.

1 comment:

  1. To turn around the debt you are in, you will have to live a disciplined and frugal existence for a while. Think how good it is that you are doing it now instead of five years from now. You are giving yourself a wonderful gift, it just takes a while for your investment to pay off. You are dealing with consequences now that many of your friends are still ignoring, so while it may feel like you want to give up right now, don't do it! You can ignore your debt for a while, but once you are done ignoring it, it will still be there - and bigger! On the other hand, if you spend a few years becoming debt-free, you will really be out of debt. You will have real freedom - which is the thing that all adults really want. They just trade it for fake freedom that is fleeting and enslaving. At the point you attain real freedom your only concern will be what do you want to save for next? A cruise? Your first new new car? A house?

    The things you are focusing in on are small and taking some time to think about each thing in depth will help. These are habit issues, and small habits are really really hard to break, whether it is cigarettes or Starbucks mochas. Really think about all the reasons why you want to eat out after a hard day. Because you hate cleaning up dishes? Because you like to see friends? Because you cook boring food at home? Figuring out what it is that triggers your little "childish" impulses is important because then you can do something to counter them. It takes big effort to knock down a little habit. For example, find a new different recipe on Supercook using things that are already in your pantry, or do freezer meals that are prepped and ready so that on a hard day you don't have as much to clean up. Heck, I'm all for the environment, but if buying a pack of paper plates for $1.99 keeps you from spending $30 at a restaurant, that could be a good investment too. Since a hard day is a trigger,think about satisfying ways to manage a hard day - a movie and popcorn? a walk? Don't know what works for you, but just saying - take some time to think about what is really going on. With my Dr. Pepper addiction I discovered I was replacing food with soda. My answer was literally labeling one can per day with a calendar date to make me feel guilt for spending from other days. When I felt like I wanted a Dr. Pepper, I thought - am I hungry? am I thirsty? am I tired? am I emotional? Then I proceeded with the appropriate solution. I also drank water from a Dr. Pepper bottle because I kid you not that helped, and then increasing the amount of calories I eat - (for some reason, cheese was a good replacement for Dr. Pepper). Taking tylenol first thing in the morning prevented the headache from ever kicking in, which helped me too. Could you put sticky notes with the date on each of your $10 bills to make yourself more concious of breaking a promise to yourself? Could you seal your envelope for future purchases so you have to fight a barrier to raid it? Or maybe store it in some ridiculous place that you don't usually have access to when you are spending - such as locked in the trunk of your car, or in a drawer in the bathroom? Could you literally avoid places that make you more likely to spend (I try not to walk by the vending machine for example)? These seem like drastic measures, but clearly this is something that means a lot to you. So, don't be afraid to be a little silly, or go a little overboard to keep your goals. It is hard, that's legit. Not everyone has the same struggles, but clearly a lot of people do.