I’ve been a fan of Dave Ramsey and Suze Orman for quite some time. I’ve put a lot of their ideas into practice. We’ve never carried debt but we started and completed our emergency fund. I’ve even set up a budget, created an account on mint and tracked our money . But that’s where it stops. I never have set up any practices to stay in budget. I watch it go into red every single time, far beyond the limits of the budget. It’s been depressing. I knew Dave Ramsey’s budget system was the “envelope system”. Where you budget your money, put cash for non-bills in envelopes and when it’s out, it’s out. That scares me to death. Because what if I saw the cutest top on sale at Target and I HAD to have it. Or what if I REALLY wanted Taco Bell for lunch instead of a pb&j. Or what if…
The end to all those sentences is, I wouldn’t be able to get what I wanted. And that’s just lame. I’m a grown, responsible adult and I should be better able to control those desires. Because it may cost to opt-in but I have to count the cost of opting out. The price of my inability to control my desires is someone’s next meal or the clothes on their back. We have to be more responsible so we can give more. We have to be more responsible so we are equipped to handle crisis so we are not running around trying to fix it instead of concentrating on others. We have to be more responsible so our kids see us be more responsible. Since December we have gotten much better but we’re ready to take the next step and tackle the envelope system.
Based off the budget I had set up in mint.com, I created a budget on Dave’s forms and actually planned where every single dollar is going to go with every paycheck. I know when bills are coming and going. We’re saving for once-a-year stuff. We’ve set up what money is staying in checking, what’s being moved to savings and what goes in an envelope. I even have a coffee envelope! Everything in moderation, people! You didn’t think I was going to completely cut that out did you?
Scott and I actually had a budget meeting. Dave suggests “the nerd” do the budget and then present it to the spouse. They are able to make any changes they want without question. I, of course being the nerd, presented it last night with much anticipation. We went through every line item with little fighting and actually very little changes.
So October 1 we start. It’s going to be weird dealing in cash. It’s going to be weird planning meals. It’s going to be weird rationing out clothing money. It’s going to be weird not going to Chick-fil-a every single time we want. It’s all going to be weird for a while.
Weird and scary. But I believe so worth it.
Very curious…do you have a budget? If so, how do you control your budget? Are you a Dave Ramsey fan?