Here is what my plans to do better RIGHT NOW include.
- Go back to the ol' B... that's right, the budget. Is it fun? Not really. Is it cool? That's subjective. Is it sexy? Some people think so. But in all reality, the bottom line is this: they work. You need to tell your money where to go. Or as my main man Dave Ramsey says, "On paper, on purpose". I have always preferred to construct a weekly budget. I think they are easier to manage, control, and if you screw up, you are mere days away from starting fresh. What works one week won't necessarily work the next, and until you become an old pro, this is a great way to dip your feet in and test the budget waters.
- Weekly meal planning, and grocery shopping with purpose and a list. I have been utilizing Super Cook to find new, and easy recipes with the ingreditents I already have. This not only cuts back on the grocery bill, but makes sure what we have is getting used and not going to waste. There is nothing worse then finding out the lettuce has gone bad, the carrots are soggy, and you find some kind of mystery meat in the bottom of the freezer, to me, it's wasteful and inexcusable.
- Staying out of the stores. Easier said then done right? Well, in my own personal experience I have found that I cannot go into Target or Wal-Mart for just a few things. I always get side tracked and end up buying something that not only do I not need, but shouldn't be spending the money on it anyways. While I am not saying that you can never go into another store ever again, it is important to make a list, stick to it and get the heck out of there. A little trick I have learned is to tape a little note to myself, such as "do I really need this", "can I afford it" or something of the like. It helps reduce the amount of impulse purchases.
- CASH CASH CASH - I MUST start using the envelope system again, if you don't know what this is, be sure to click on the link to read more about it.