How a husband and budget helped me lose the stress (mostly)(Read article summary)
Even flat tires can't rattle Bob and Linda's budget.
Well, Bob and I just finished week 3 of the Financial Peace University. This lesson would have been the hardest for me if I weren’t married to Bob. It’s about the budget. It’s pretty impressive, because in the monthly cashflow plan breaks down into a bunch of forms, like budgeting worksheets, that you have to fill out. Each one helps you get control of your monthly expenses in a different way. Dave talks about how it’s absolutely necessary to do this in order to succeed. Then, you know where your money is going. It really is empowering to know that you’re telling your money what to do instead of being controlled by how much (or little) money you have.
When I was single, I didn’t have a budget really. I mean, sometimes I would budget somethings out, but I there was a lot of money that was “disappearing!” Know what I mean? One time, I got a flat tire. I had a male co-worker go with me to the tire place and help me out so I didn’t get taken advantage of (at least I had that going for me!). Well, I needed 2 new tires and I had no idea where the money was going to come from. I felt so out of control and really stressed out. It was horrible! But I didn’t know what to do! So, I got the tires, put it on the credit card, and tried to forget that awful feeling.
When I married Bob, I had a different situation on my hands. One day we had a flat tire and I started feeling the way I felt when I was on my own. But when I talked to Bob about it, he told me it was no big deal. The money was already there in our car maintenance fund. What a huge sigh of relief! I didn’t have to worry! I didn’t have to stress myself out! And I didn’t have to get into any more debt because of it! What a great feeling!
I now, can’t believe that I never had a budget before I married Bob. I used to think that it would feel restricting to have to put my money in certain categories, or envelopes (as Dave talks about). But now, I realize it’s not restrictive at all. It’s completely freeing! When (not if) life happens and something goes wrong, there’s money there to cover it. No debt, no worry. For the first time, I’ve got peace about money. And it all has to do with the fact that I’m doing my part.
If you don’t have a budget, START ONE! If you need an accountability partner, ask someone you trust! There is also a ton of budgeting software available, so really there is no excuse. It’s a little bit of work on the front end, yes, but the end result will be so much better than you can even imagine!
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