If you’ve tried to work with budgets in the past, but have not felt inspired or successful with the process, cultivating certain qualities can give you the boost you need to create (and stick to) financial plans like a champ. The more willingness you have to fully embody these qualities in your budgeting process, the more heroic you will feel in accomplishing your financial goals and intentions.
Apply these 4 qualities to your budgeting and gain a fresh new outlook on how to be intentional with your resources:
If you have set budgets in the past and then deviated from your projection due to unexpected expenses, lack of tracking tools, or plain ole’ indulgence, you are not alone.
The key to recovering from this type of financial sabotage is to be gentle and forgiving with yourself so you can move on and do better next time. Observe your behavior instead of judging it or adding a layer of shame. This is the first step to freedom.
The unexpected will appear everywhere in life, including your finances. If you are too rigidly tied to a specific number, you will be more likely to throw your budget out the window completely when it doesn’t match perfectly.
Make sure to save for the unknown and create areas of cushion in your budget so you do not feel like a failure when you need to spend more than you planned, and remember that you don’t need to be 100% exact to be successful.
Self-imposed limitations with your spending will assure that you align your resources with your priorities. Instead of feeling resentful of these boundaries, think of them as the vehicles that will lead you to your most valued experiences, and that you are the one choosing your boundaries. Then give yourself the experience of living in alignment with that boundary to see what value it can provide you with.
When you fall asleep in your daily spending, you spend in habitual, unconscious ways that may not be in alignment with what you truly want. You are likely to feel frustrated or even impoverished when your money is not available for something that feels very important because it leaked out when you weren’t paying attention. Learn to love boundaries and you will be rich in what you truly desire.
A powerful way to change a lifelong pattern is accountability. Budgeting helps you hold yourself accountable to your intentions, but it can also be very beneficial to have a money partner or coach help you hold the accountability together. Your tracking systems and reports are the clear windows that show you how you really did with your intentions.
Looking at your tracking systems consistently is like stepping on a scale every week to stay accountable to your weight-loss goals. If you know a report is coming every month or every quarter, you will have more motivation to stick to your goals, especially if you are showing those reports to someone else.
Here is a powerful infographic to download, print out, and keep near you — whether in your office or you financial vision board, to stay inspired and on track.
May you enjoy the pleasure of setting boundaries to experience freedom.