Save Smarter, Not Harder | How to Stick With Your Financial Plan – EP 226

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Creating a financial plan and making a habit to fulfill it is easier said than done. In this last episode of our Radical Middle series, it is all about sticking to your financial plan based on the dream life you envisioned! We unravel how psychology, our financial decisions, and willpower are all intertwined components to help us recognize ourselves such as our capabilities in saving smarter.

Your budget tells you what you could be doing. Tracking your spending tells you what you are doing.


  • The Spending Symposium Audio Flash Sale. Prices are still rising and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to plan and stick to a budget. That’s why we held The Spending Symposium last month with 20 experts teaching your their tips for spending less and savings better. While the full All Access Pass is no longer available we wanted to give you one more opportunity to get the mp3 versions of all our expert interviews from this year’s summit AND we’re throwing in last year’s as well. That’s almost 40 interviews, (39 to be exact), that you’ve never heard on the show. So if you need more help controlling your spending check it out. We’re only offering them for a week so go to to see every session and start listening.

Willpower, Finances, and Spending

In this article, American Psychological Association (APA) talks about willpower and self-control while highlighting its relation to certain strategies on saving and spending money.  

What Jen + Jill have to say:

Jill agrees on APA’s article claiming how in every financial decision, it requires willpower which can then become exhausted. It also claims that people who frequently overcome difficult financial decisions (those who are less financially stable) are most likely to deplete their willpower. Jen empathizes with this claim as she quotes, ‘Every spending decision you make is a tough decision’. 

There are a lot of things that can be done to prevent exhausting our willpower, Jill says to space out financial decisions one at a time, save money automatically using software or mobile applications, and find a community to support you. While Jen advises to jot down our spending and avoid temptations at all costs! 

Big Wins The Simple Way

By now, you probably have heard or have been using the 80/20 rule. It is a widely used principle for saving with less effort. In an article written by Matthew, he shares how the said principle will help us focus on the vital few instead of the trivial many. 

What Jen + Jill have to say:

The article mentions that for most people, the most important things to get right are housing, transportation, and food (someone’s expenditures are not going to be the same for everyone). Jill recommends doing a ‘pareto analysis’ on your spending which can be done by creating an annual list of spending in different categories and lists. 

Jen shares how you can do fun and simple challenges on each of these important things such as the challenge they did with the Frugal Friends Club called ‘House Savings Hunters Challenge’. As Jen & Jill focuses a lot on building healthy financial habits for us to make better decisions while also recognizing that everyone is dynamic. 

Our Best 80/20 Savings Tip

House hacking for Jen and applying the 80/20 concept to each category. But y’all know saving on housing is her fav, right?!

Bill of The Week

Thank you Jen for sharing your bill about Christmas eve and joining a local buy nothing group and getting a free TV for your kids!

Thanks so Much for Listening!

Thanks so much for listening! Many of you know we have a private community where we do monthly money challenges and offer accountability groups. We want to congratulate one of our members for a big win:

I paid off my Target card the other day and it feels so good!

AND Thanks to last night’s group and the challenge checklist, we do NOT have to buy a new dishwasher yet. My husband and I didn’t know there was a filter to clean, lol! Now to fix the dryer….

Congrats Wendy! Thanks for listening and if you want to check out our monthly challenge community head to to see what challenge we have coming up next.

Keep leaving us reviews on iTunes or Stitcher, and sending the screenshot to And don’t forget to share your favorite quote from the episode by using the hashtag #FrugalFriendsNote. 😉

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