Happiness Budget

Friday, August 31, 2018

I a m lucky that I work in the banking industry now,  but I do wish that someone sat me down in university,  made me do a budget and taught me how credit works. When you turn 18 everyone seems to want to give you a credit card, loan or a line of credit and then the reality of how much spending money you don’t have kicks in. Once I realized how little in my best interest all the people “offering advice” had by selling you their credit products, I panicked and created a budget for each little thing I wanted to spend money on each month.
Having a traditional budget, a job that paid decent salary and trying to be diligent about where I spent my money wasn't working for me. It wasn't doing anything for my happiness. Although, I highly encourage you to have a budget, creating a budget based on a balance between what makes you happy and being financially responsible is what made a world of difference for me. 

Here are four things I changed to help me spend only on what makes me happy while making good financial decisions:

Check your spending.

I went through 6 months worth of bank and credit cards statements and came to the realization that spending money carelessly (mainly on take out and Starbucks) didn't actually do anything for my happiness or well being. By coming to the realization that spending nearly $200 a month on coffee (which I do love) wasn't actually worth it. Based on this I cut my spending in those places and applied it to things that actually made a difference in my happiness.

Write down what makes you happy.
Write down things that you want and that make you happy... it can be as small as yoga once a week or as big as backpacking in Australia.

Based on the list of things that make you happy, prioritize! List these things in the order you want to accomplish them.

Make a new plan.
You now have a list of things that make you happy, you know what order you want to accomplish them, so go ahead and set your budget accordingly. 

Travel seems to be a reoccurring thing on my happiness budget list. I created a separate savings and put money in there regularly. Employing this way of budgeting makes way more sense for me, and its achievable.

How do you budget? What would be on top of your happiness list?