Just like the word “Diet”, “Budget” has such negative connotations. It feels so restrictive, prescriptive and static. When we think of the word budget we think about penny pinching, sacrificing enjoyment for financial stability and living within limited means and depending on our own money story this may be very triggering.
Just as we are led to believe that the Paleo or even Atkins diets will create miracle results for everyone, regardless of your starting point, your existing health or your preferences we are also led to believe that a certain type of budget will work for everyone.
There is a reason why, in big business, a budget is set and within two months it is often replaced by an updated forecast. It is far more practical to set a forecast, or spendings plan and adjust it as often as necessary to suit the needs of an individual or business. Every single person has their own money story, goals and needs and a one size fits all approach should never be applied.
Budgets are designed to help you meet financial goals, the problem being if you are told you must restrict yourself in any sense, the task automatically becomes laborious and feels like a chore.
If we instead tell ourselves that we have a spending plan, we no longer feel restricted or inhibited in our ability to make our money work for us. We will feel confident and empowered to take positive action to improve our financial position.
So, what do we suggest instead, work on a spending plan, not a budget. In any given month, how will you spend your money, what will you do with any surplus, and how are you going to build wealth. As mentioned earlier, starting the process can feel completely overwhelming as money is a very emotive subject for so many people and the greatest emotion attached is usually fear.
So many people we see have a negative relationship with money and are genuinely fearful for their future financial security. They often believe that there is a high likelihood that they may lose everything (e.g. their job that pays well) or that they won’t have enough money to have a financially secure retirement. When we break the cycle of negative thoughts, we can also break the limiting beliefs we have and increase our money confidence.
By reframing the way we think about “spendings plans” (budgets) we can start to see them as positive tools for achieving our financial goals and living a more intentional life.
I would love you to revisit our money affirmations after reading this, to help build your positive emotions around finances and shape your money reality.