Why sticking to your budget will ultimately make you a better person

I’m the spender in our family. And recently, I was reminded in full force how easily your well-planned budget can slip right through your fingers.  I had that option many times and I resisted every single time.

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Yes, I love to spend money! But, I realize that spending money now means that we’ll have less later and I refuse to dip into next month’s budget for what I want right now.  So I decided to take the more prudent road and realized that each day I didn’t mindlessly spend on things I didn’t need, it strengthened my resolve to practice financial stewardship again and again. I know it isn’t easy and, honestly, I’m glad it’s a new month and our budget has started over.  I was reminded of some pretty important lessons that I’m ready to share with you.

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We Saved $1500+! Change Overspending into Overachieving

A while ago, I wrote about our family overspending on or discretionary budget.  We needed to save $475 to get back on track.  And I’m happy to report that we’ve done it – 6 months later.  In addition to eliminating our overspending, we reduced our discretionary spending budget each month by $200 (working hard to pay off those student loans, which we did in July 2013).  In total, we saved $1500 from our discretionary in less than a year! It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it–you can get your spending back on track by using these smart solutions to help you make important, lasting decisions.

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Use what you already own. Since I’d been price matching for more than a year, we made a plan to use up the food we’d already purchased and only buy essentials to get through some of these “lean” months.  We were able to eat a lot of the food we’d already owned and it helped us make room for more items. This allowed us to find the really good deals on the items we wanted and increased our monthly grocery savings dramatically.  I also tried experiments to see what could save us money in the future.  Frozen, thawed milk? I would only recommend using it for baking (not drinking).  But our homemade bread froze and baked beautifully.

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