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Hi friends and happy Friday!
While we all may be in the midst of the holiday, end of year, and late-Fall season, we’re not all in the same life season.
This reality can make all the difference in the decisions we make with our money.
Our season doesn’t have to be viewed as something holding us back, but rather something we can value and integrate into our financial plans.
As we look into the new year 🥂, here are a few steps we can take to allow our context to help inform what is reasonable and right for us and our money:
1. Consider your short-term and long-term money goals 💪You can break this down further to include short-term spending AND savings goals; long-term spending AND savings goals.
2. Prioritize your money goals in order of importance 💸 Hint: Safety and security needs should come before nice to haves.
But also hold the tension in knowing when there’s enough in emergency savings that you can freely spend on vacation or home upgrades, etc.
3. Take inventory of your season 📨 We’ve been talking a lot about this over the past few Fridays (so feel free to reference back in your inbox).
Essentially, this includes acknowledging the importance of financial demands if you’re a home-owner, a parent, a caretaker, experiencing high stress, or navigating grief/loss (just to name a few).
4. Review the math 🧾 Look over your take-home pay and your outgoing expenses (be sure to log the reality of your family’s spending, not the fantasy!).
This should include your fixed expenses (rent/mortgage, utilities, etc.) and your discretionary expenses (average monthly spending on food, entertainment, misc.). We recommend looking at this for the past 3 months to get a good sense of your average spending.
5. Bring it ALL into alignment 💡 This is where we put our brains to work and synthesize, make meaning, and create a plan that is really individualized to us. Conversations with our spouse/partner, close friends, a finance expert, possibly even our mental health care provider could be needed at this stage.
Some things that can happen at this stage include:
🤑 Identifying areas we can reasonably decrease OR increase spending
🗓 Making plans for any excess funds per month (i.e. setting percentages or fixed amounts to put towards our short/long term goals)
📝 Eliminating OR adding money goals to the list
🖐 Extending or shortening the length of time we anticipate it will take to reach out goals
🧘 Exhaling deeply and experiencing a sense of peace that you have a plan that is realistic for you and fits your needs and timeline
Catch ya later,
⭐️⭐️ P.S. Want to share all this goodness with your friends AND earn cool Frugal Friends merch?
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