26 January 2023

Are you struggling to stay on track with your budget? Does managing your finances feel like an uphill battle?

Don't worry; you're not alone. Many of us face challenges when it comes to sticking to a budget. However, the good news is that with the right strategies and mindset, you can overcome these obstacles and achieve financial success.

Imagine a life where you have full control over your money – where every dollar you spend is intentional and brings you closer to your goals. It's not just a dream; it can be your reality. By making small changes you can transform your financial situation for the better.

Cost of living is increasing and wages aren't. Getting ahead financially isn't an over night transformation, it's a step by step process.

Below I ave listed the top 3 reasons people struggle to make their budgets work and a couple of simple steps you can take if your interested in getting on top of your finances.

1. Not keeping regular track of expenses.

We humans are creatures of habit so when it comes to money we have forgotten the real benefits of regularly tracking where your money is going.

We get paid, we pay the bills and if there's anything left over we spend it. Then rinse and repeat the process next week.

By keeping track of your expenses you will build a greater awareness of anywhere you might be leaking money and start to identify areas that you could reduce costs.

Every dollar saved is a dollar you have for something else. We recently started buying our milk at the warehouse on the way home. At 8 bottles of milk a week we are saving $8, add that to the combined savings of another $6 from other areas that's over $50 a week we are now adding to our savings.

Start tracking your expenses weekly and develop a detective mindset instead of being reactive to every day pressures and you will be amazed what you might discover.

2. Not having or creating an emergency fund.

To get your budget accurate it will take a little time. It doesn't happen over night. An emergency fund no matter how small to begin with is better than none.

This money can help cushion you from the unexpected. Even if it doesn't fully cover an unexpected expense, it will reduce the impact on other expenses.

Even if it's only $10 a week, start saving something every week. It's amazing how once you see that money saving you will want to protect it and make it grow more.

Here's a link to a simple calculator that will help you work out your current minimum savings capacity, I've used this for over 8 years with clients, in fact it's built into my Online Planner because it's such a great tool.

Calculate your minimum savings capacity here

3. Setting unrealistic goals

You have probably heard it said, if you want to get ahead set goals. While that's true, unrealistic goals will leave you disillusioned very quickly, then you give up. 

Giving up means you go back to that creature of habit lifestyle and is that what you really want for the rest of your life?

Start with small goals and then increase these as you go. 

Our first goal when we relocated to Auckland in 2014 was to put aside $40 a week for 3 months and achieve $500 for a weekend away.

Having a goal that wasn't too far away and also didn't require huge sacrifices at the time meant we achieved it.

And that led to bigger goals like our upcoming trip to Rarotonga in 4 weeks time. Already fully paid with from savings and not funded by debt that we will need to return to and figure out how to pay back.

Goals are important, realistic goals at the beginning will grow into bigger better goals/ More importantly goals you will be able to achieve and feel really good about it in the process.

1 2 3 Go!

Start taking the steps to make your budget work today.

  • Start tracking your spending
  • Kick start building your  emergency fund
  • Set a couple of small goals to enjoy success quickly.

Once you get a taste of success, you will find a new found love for budgeting and go from strength to strength with your finances.

Need a little help making your budget work?

Register to my customised Online Budget Planner and have your budget personally reviewed for any recommendations absolutely free.