What is Values Based Budgeting + How Do You Practice It? – EP 177

We talk a lot about the difference between being frugal and being cheap and one essential defining factor is that frugality makes room for spending on the things we value. Of course this does require some thoughtful and intentional budgeting around these values. While there are many ways to approach budgeting, we feel values based budgeting has the highest likelihood of actually sticking. Listen in on HOW to budget around your values!


  • 7-Day No-Spend Challenge! If you feel like you spent a little too much this summer or back-school season and you want to step back and reset your spending habits, we have created a free mini-workbook that will help you do that through a 7-day no-spend challenge. The workbook will help you plan, execute, and reflect on the challenge so that after 7-days you know what you need to work on and you have an action plan to do so. So if that sounds like something you need head to frugalfriendspodcast.com/free to get yours 
  • Meeting up in person! Do you live in the Austin, TX area? Would you like to meet Jen sometime between Sept 22nd to 24th? DM us on instagram @modernfrugality and we’ll organize a little group hang!

Notable Notes:

What the Internet has to say:

This article from CloBare defines values based budgeting and gives some basic pointers on how we can budget around our values!

What Jen + Jill have to say:

  • Values based budgeting asks this magic wand question (very similar to the ‘miracle question’ utilized in Solutions Focused Therapy)
    • a budgeting philosophy focused on guiding users to spend money in the areas of their life they value most
  • WHY?
    • 1. Values based budgeting is personalized
    • 2. It helps to prevent impulse purchases because it already considers the things you want to spend money on
    • 3. Allows me to live the life I want NOW
  • HOW?
    • 1. Figure out what you value (i.e. if employer paid in something other than cash)
    • 2. Take a look at your spending
    • 3. List out the things you don’t valye
    • 4. Consider where you can cut back on what you don’t value to put it where you do value
    • 5. Evaluate essential expenses
    • 6. Use ‘found’ money to go towards high value categories

More from the Internet:

This article from Eat Drink and Save Money provides helpful examples of how to pair values based budgeting with values based spending.

More from Jen + Jill:

  • Whether we value friendship, the environment, health, time (or all 4!) there are ways we can spend and engage with these values in a way that is also congruent with our budget and earning. In essence, we CAN spend on our values, but our values also don’t need to be an excuse for overextending our wallets each month! example


Thank you Savannah for sharing your bill about going to Target, not spending money, AND getting a free drink from Starbucks!

If you want to submit your bill of the week visit frugalfriendspodcast.com/bill to leave us a bill

Lightning Round 

Our core values and how we budget for and save on them 

  • Jill- time with people – enjoy good food, generosity – hosting people, health – vitamix babay!…and youtube workouts, time – I will pay for convenience, beauty – having a restful/beautiful space (doesn’t have to be big but I will spend to make it nice), mental health, travel
  • Jen- achievement- business- I pay for daycare, community- family- daycare, friends- we have people over a lot, health- crossfit, efficiency


Thanks so much for listening! Keep leaving us reviews on iTunes or Stitcher, and sending the screenshot to frugalfriendspodcast@gmail.com AND share our most recent episode on social for a chance to win a copy of the Frugal Friends Workbook!

Thanks for listening! See you next week!

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