Why Spending Plans are the New Budget. Are They Right for You?

So I was into budgeting like 3 years ago. It was the start of our debt payoff days and the beginning of my major anxiety around money. Well, maybe not the beginning, but my anxiety around trying to keep money rather than my anxiety around never having any. Which is precisely why I want to share with you my new favorite: spending plans. What is a spending plan and why is it taking over the budgeting world? Well, lemme tell ya…

What is a budget?

First of all, I suppose we have to cover what a budget is exactly.

A budget, as some would say, is telling your money where to go. Which is exactly what it is. It’s taking all of your money, saving some, paying your bills and deciding exactly where you want all of your money to go.

As simple as it may sound, still the word, “budget” tends to send fear into the hearts of people who hear it. They imagine restrictions, limitations, and ultimately having their money taken away from them. It can often make people instantly put up a guard and think, “I can’t do something like that.”

What is a spending plan?

Now, on the flip side, what makes a spending plan so different? Some might tell you there really is no difference between a spending plan and a budget, but I would beg to differ.

The moment I decided to stop looking at my money as numbers on a budgeting spreadsheet and start seeing it as an opportunity to truly help me live the life I wanted to live, the whole game changed.

So what’s the difference?

Instead of following the rules of budgeting by saving, paying my bills, and then squeezing out whatever was left, I decided to make al list of what I wanted to spend my money on.

I called this The Bucket List Budget (Spending Plan).

This is how The Bucket List Budget works:

  • Decide what your biggest life goals are
  • Find the time, money and things that are taking you away from your life goals
  • Create a new plan, with more money so you can do more of what you want! How we budget hacked $3,000 per month

Ultimately a spending plan makes your spending more about you than it does about your money. I think this works so well because whenever we put our focus and attention on money, it has a way of taking our power away.

Instead, put your focus and attention on something larger than money that money can help provide for you!

Why people are choosing spending plans over budgeting

People who have tried and felt restricted or limited by budgeting are slowly beginning to shift their focus to more of a spending plan type strategy for their money.

The beauty in creating a well-planned spending plan is that you are still able to provide for your basic needs, save for the future, and have fun in your life right now without feeling like you have to sacrifice or live with the guilt of spending.

Spending plans and credit card debt

Here’s the catch. Some people might read all of this and think, “Sweet! This chick is giving me permission to just spend all my money on me!!” No, not quite…that kind of thinking is what leads to credit card debt.

Credit card debt leads to you paying hundreds to thousands of dollars to credit card companies every month. What people often mistake for freedom with a credit card is often shackles and chains in disguise. When you are creating a spending plan, it is so important to start by looking at the income that you already have.

How to Save for the Future and Still Live That YOLO Life

How to know which one is right for you?

Are you great at managing money already? Or are you someone who loves to spend? If you already struggle with over-using your credit card or sticking to a budget having a Bucket List Budget Spending Plan is the right way to go!

However, if you are someone who loves numbers and budgeting and the idea of saving money and living frugally is what excites you, then you’re probably ok sticking with a budget.

At the end of the day you have to decide who you are and what you ultimately want your life to look like.

Should you create a spending plan?

Heck yes!

If you have been struggling with money or living that paycheck to paycheck cycle a spending plan is most likely what you need to help you transform your financial future.

Not sure how to even begin to create a spending plan? That’s why I created The Bucket List Budget. To help people struggling to balance a budget. You will get step by step guidance on how to build a spending plan that is catered to you and your lifestyle.

You can also start super simple with just a sheet of paper or budget printouts. The important thing is to just get started.

How do I get started with a spending plan?

The best way to get started with a spending plan is by doing a spending inventory. This means just taking a look at what you normally spend each month and then building a spending plan based on those numbers.

I walk you through this process in The Bucket List Budget, but you can start by following these few simple steps:

  • Take inventory of where you spent your money last month
  • Decide which areas of your spending you’d like to reduce or eliminate
  • Make a new budget plan based on those numbers

What if I have no money to spend?

Here is a big concern. If you are truly stuck in that paycheck to paycheck cycle, I recommend reading about our downsize. For years our family lived way above our means, just trying to keep up with the Joneses.

The day we decided to take control of our lives was the day we finally started to get our life and finances back in control. It can be a scary thing, but it is definitely worth it.

If you are looking for more ways to increase your income, join my free training, Cash Hacks to learn how to save your first $1,000 faster!

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People cringe at the idea of budgeting. But what about having a spending plan that you actually get to spend money with? Here's why everyone is switching.
People cringe at the idea of budgeting. But what about having a spending plan that you actually get to spend money with? Here's why everyone is switching.