Getting Your Budget Back On Track
Living within a budget is not always cut and dry. Some months you will see success and some months you will see failure. What can you do to turn a bad month into an opportunity to better your financial habits?
We’ve all had those times where we have wildly overspent our budget. Once that failure is realized we tend to beat ourselves up and continue with the bad habits that got us there in the first place. What can we do to rebound in a positive way?
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
The first thing you need to do is give yourself a break. Overshooting your budget does not make you a failure and won’t doom you financially. Allow yourself to make mistakes but always use them to better yourself. We all learn much more from failure than we do success - so use these opportunities!
Find Your Mistake
After you take a breath look at your spending and see where it went off the rails. Maybe you had a big unexpected expense that will be easy to find like a car or home repair. If nothing big happened the most likely cause is simple overspending in one area - dining out too much, replacing pieces in your wardrobe, a little too much Amazon impulse spending and so on.
If you can see where you went wrong you can make a plan to address it and be a little more mindful in the future. You can always allocate more money in your budget to this area if it is one you see yourself overspending in a lot. Go back a few months and see what your spending was like over a period of time.
Budgets are fluid and may take time to make sense for your life.
Adjust Your Next Month’s Budget
After an overspending event you may want to makes some adjustments to your next budget. Since you spent too much you may have to make cuts for the next week or month or move money around to cover any additional debt you may have incurred. Not every blown budget will require this but it is wise to keep in mind when reproaching your budget.
The most important thing is to make sure you are still able to cover your general bills so your infraction doesn’t cause any lasting credit damage. If the overspending caused you to be late on a payment make it as soon as possible.
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