I feel really old posting about finances. Ha!
a simple year‘s theme last month was money. I initially scoffed at the theme, because I generally consider myself good with finances. I could understand debt like student loans or mortgages… but I honestly couldn’t fathom how people could max out their credit cards and only make minimum payments each month by splurging on luxuries like nights out, vacations and shopping.
I wasn’t always so good with money, though. When I was an undergrad, I had a scholarship which provided me with my allowance. I remember being surprised that I had no more money left when I tried to withdraw one time. That was before online banking, and after the wake up call that spending money can be super easy and quick, I’ve been a lot more vigilant.
I’m one of those people who records each and every expense. I reconcile my accounts weekly. It gives me a better sense of where I am financially and where my money goes, as well as gives me a reality check not to throw my money away. It’s been working so far, I think! 🙂
Anyway, I realised I have to tighten my belt a bit more lately. It’s always hard to balance saving with living, isn’t it? I like how money enables me to enjoy life, but at the same time I know I have to make sacrifices for my future. Earlier this year, I was reviewing all of my utility providers and switching to cheaper options. I’ve recently switched my mortgage provider, too. (Somehow, when I was younger, I never realised that being an adult involved things like that… haha.) I’m also closing some of my subscriptions to stuff like Headspace and Smugmug and trying to find free alternatives.
It’s insane how these little things add up, and I have to be more conscious of where my money goes. I’m already pretty good with bringing lunch with me most days, and I’ve never been much for shopping. But I think I’ve been a bit lax about throwing money around lately, and being more intentional with my purchases should help with that.
At the end of the day, though… money isn’t everything. I need to remind myself that having such a close scrutiny of my spending and guilting myself when I spend a bit more than I should isn’t healthy, either. I think I need to find that balance where I am truly happy with not wanting a lot or spending a lot rather than overspending on a strict budget and beating myself up about it.
Balance, balance, it’s all about balance.
(I’ve just paid for a year’s worth of hosting and domain registration, maybe I should move to a free option next year?)