Showing posts with label budgeting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label budgeting. Show all posts


There's More To Life Than Money ?

There’s more to life than money. We hear that saying all the time but for many people money is at the centre of their existence and I believe, rightly so.

If you are thirsty and dehydrated you can think of nothing but water. If you are starving you can think of nothing but food. So it is right to think that when you are out of money or you have money troubles then that is all you can think of.

Poor money management creates tremendous stress. There is stress because of guilty feelings of over spending. There is stress not knowing how bills will be paid for. There is stress in knowing that you are going backwards. This stress is often the basis of many disputes and marriage break ups.

The only way out is to WAKE UP from the CONSUMER NIGHTMARE.

If you are unhappy with your present financial circumstances then you must make changes to your relationship with money or things will not improve or they will get worse.

1. WORK OUT WHERE YOU ARE FINANCIALLY – list everything you have and everything you owe. A total clean sweep – right down to that 10c on your bedside table and the 20c coin in the glove box of your car. Gather it all up and FACE YOUR FINANCIAL TRUTH.

2. LOOK AT WHAT YOU HAVE – If you are in debt, look around your home and ask yourself ‘was it worth it’. I remember seeing a TV programme once where a finance expert was in someone’s home and they opened up the storage cupboard and just started counting - $30, $25, $75 etc as they were pointing to board games, hairdryers, DVD collections, toys etc. How much of your money is just sitting around in cupboards. It’s a VERY scary thought.

3. THINK ABOUT WHAT YOU NOW DON’T HAVE: Think about this- if you have a mortgage and you haven’t paid it off in ten years, ask yourself where that money went that could have been used for extra repayments. The answer is – thrown out! You have spent thousands of dollars that could have got you out of debt on things that you have bought and thrown away. How many clothes do you have that are more than 5 years old ? We buy them then they go out of fashion and we throw them away. We also buy popcorn makers and electric slippers, music CDs, storage baskets, doona covers, computers, TVs, lounge suites. We have them for a while and then they become old, boring and unfashionable…. So we buy new ones. So instead of now being debt free, we accidentally spent the money that we could have put towards extra repayments on …… things that we thought were good at the time.

4. KNOW THE TRICKS OF THE TRADE: Advertising is seduction. The sooner you understand this, the better you and your money will get on together. Don’t believe what you see. No face cream will make you look younger, no car will improve your life, no office furniture will increase your income. What will really make you feel great is being financially free, having positive relationships and finding your ‘JOY FACTOR’ – that is, something that truly gives you joy in life. Think about why companies offer - BUY NOW PAY LATER type deals. It is because they know that the majority of people don’t pay on time and they will make extra profits.

5. IF YOU HAVE A POOR TRACK RECORD, DON’T TRUST YOURSELF: I have heard people say, I can’t carry cash because I just spend it. In my experience it is a lot harder to part with cash knowing that you only have $30 in your wallet than it is to hand over your credit card and convince yourself that this is a justifiable one off purchase that you will definitely pay off at the end of the month. BE REAL – carry cash and be creative about not using it.

6.BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF: We get into trouble with money because we are lying to ourselves. We won’t accept the cold hard truth that we cannot live our current lifestyle on our current income. It’s as simple as that. If we were HONEST we would think differently about how we spend.

7. RECOGNISE THAT RECREATIONAL BUYING GIVES A SHORT TERM BUZZ: - Sure, it’s exciting when you bring something home from the shops but the buzz wears off, sometimes too quickly and you have to buy something else to get that sense of excitement. – If it were any other substance you were abusing it would be called a drug addiction !

8. START IMAGINING A BETTER WORLD Day dream about what your life would be like if you were debt free. Would it mean that you could take holidays, real, soul renewing holidays. Would it mean that one of the parents could ‘come home’. Would it mean that both parents could work part time. Would it mean that you could stop working to pay for debt and start working in an area that you are passionate about that may mean a lesser salary. Would it mean that you could leave work all together and work for yourself, create your own income or do volunteer work ?

9. WHAT ARE YOU WILLING TO TRADE YOUR TIME FOR: If you are working to create income, then everything you buy you have worked for. If your hourly rate is $30 then to buy a $60 pair of jeans you have to work two hours. You may be quite willing to do that. Ask yourself, however, whether you are willing to pay for other things – Are you prepared to work 20 hours per year to pay for cleaning products that you simply pour down the toilet or the sink ? If not, use vinegar and bi-carb. Are you willing to work 26 hours a year to pay for a subscription TV service that you miss most of the time anyway. If not, borrow DVDs from your local library. What about working 40 hours just to pay for the finance charges on your credit card which are in addition to working to pay for the things that you purchased that created the finance and interest charges. Maybe the answer to some of these questions might be ‘yes’ but it’s worth asking the question.

10. PLUG THE HOLES AUDIT: Go through all your bank statements, receipts, bills etc and see where your money goes. Don’t dismiss any small amounts. If you seriously want to make some changes then plug the holes in your ship. The small holes draining away your potential savings could sink your ship. Look at every option and try to work about how to save $5 here and there. You might find cheaper house insurance that cuts $10 a month off your bill, what about grocery savings by menu planning and shopping with a list, what about using cash only when you’re out. How about driving less or changing brands of deodorant, bread or internet provider. There are THOUSANDS of hints and tips waiting for you out there when you are ready to make the change.

THE RESULTS: Having your family budget under control means that you have freedom. You can sleep at night without financial stress. You can spend freely, knowing that you have amounts in spending categories already there in your money tin when needed. If the kids have an excursion, need new shoes, are going to a birthday party or are playing sport, you can be confident that there is money to cover it. You know that planning your meals and squeezing your grocery budget is worth it for the end of year holiday that you have each year. When you have the money aspect of your life under control it frees you up to think about chasing your joy and living a more sustainable, family centered life.


Making Money - The Entrepenuer in Me.

There is always a lot of talk about saving money. However, even after you have squeezed every last cent out of the budget there are things that have to be paid for - rates, electricity, petrol (!!)

As most of my readers know, I work completely in cash. Each week I withdraw the exact amount I need in the correct denominations. I put it away into categories for times when I need it. Whether the kids need new clothes or we are going on holidays or hiring a DVD - we always have the money there for it. If we don't have the money we don't do it! It is truly wonderful to know that it is only April and your 'Christmas' bag has lots of $20 notes in it already. It brings peace.

My question today, however, is what do you do currently or have you done in the past to bring money into your home. I don't mean your day job if you have one, I mean those extra entrepreneurial things that we often think up. I will start......

1. Tutoring kids
2. Teaching piano
3. Restoring photographs
4. babysitting
5. Teaching Scrapbooking
6. Writing people's life stories.
7. Selling on Ebay
8. Garage sales
9. Selling at 2nd hand stores
10. Markets

I love how in days gone by people made their own money. Lots of people worked for themselves. Small towns and villages had the local butcher baker and candlestick maker. Today we tend to think that we either have a job or we don't. Or that if we're only making a few dollars then it's not 'worth it'.

When you generate your own money - even if it's only $20, you have the satisfaction of knowing that therein lies a few cartons of milk, some fruit and veg and eggs!

So...... the question is over to you: How have you generated income yourself, or what would you love to do if you knew you couldn't fail or you had all the time you needed ?
Post your reply in the comments section or send me an email and I will put together a list for everyone to enjoy. If you would like to tag some friends to participate simply paste the link to this post into their comments section and ask them to post here.

To get started I am tagging:



Never under estimate that one man's trash is another man's treasure.

Because of all the rain, I started having another clean out and listed some items on Ebay. I listed the DVD of "All The Rivers Run" an ABC series.

I listed it for $11 thinking that was a reasonable price for the whole series. It currently sits at $81 dollars!!!!! Holy Dooley !!! That is absolutely incredible.

Is there something that someone isn't telling me ? Why is it such an incredible price ?


Fuel Prices Starting to Heat Up..... $190 later.

I have posted before about my interest in Peak Oil and how it will impact fuel prices and the flow on effect for basically every product on the planet.

Yesterday I really FELT it!

When I was driving the 7.5 km to work I noticed that the fuel price at the United fuel station was $136.7 ( for the green fuel that I use) while across the road at the Coles Service Station it was $1.47. I suddenly remembered hearing on the ABC news the night before that fuel prices were meant to go to $1.50 for Easter and that fuel had hit a $108 US a barrel. I also remembered that this particular fuel station was often the last one to put up their prices.

I did a quick U -Turn and filled the car up, at the same time calling and texting everyone I thought would be interested to fill up before the price hike. I note that earlier in the week the price had already jumped 9 cents a litre.

So... I filled up my car ($70 gulp~!!) and hubbie filled up his ( $120 ~gulp gulp!!!). Sure enough, on the way home I noticed that it was $1.47. That is a TWENTY CENT LEAP IN SEVEN DAYS !!!!

At present, I budget $30 for my car and $20 for hubbies car a week ( just dropped hubbie's from $30) I can tell you that $20 at this rate is just JZZZZZTTTTTTT click ! ( meaning it takes NO time at all before you hit 20 bucks !

So..... what to do. I could walk or ride to work... but it's always about time. Hubbie walked to town today to pick up his new pushbike because he had ridden the other one into the ground, literally, the axel broke beyond repair and he already rebuilt it once. It took him one hour and 10 minutes. I just don't have that at the start and end of each day. In a couple of weeks it will be dark when I walk home and there are sections that are just road, with no houses and no street lights. I live in a little town, outside a bigger regional centre. He rode the bike home which took about 20 minutes ( he is much fitter than I am. It would probably take me 45mins)

I could ride my bike, something I would really aspire to do. Logistically this is messy. I am a professional. I wear suits. Can I scrunch the suit into a backpack ? Can I shower at work ? Can I cart make - up? Can I do my hair at work ? I know, I know. Dump the societal expectations and not wear make up and don't do your hair. Unfortunately, the clothes maketh the man in my game, or should I say, the suit, hair and make up maketh the woman in a man's world ! LOL

Hmmmmm...... thoughts anyone ? ?

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