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3 Reasons Why People Love to Hate Budgets

Most people hate the thought of creating and maintaining a personal budget. They don’t want to spend their free time tracking expenses, analyzing spreadsheets and being rigid with spending their hard-earned money. If fact, if you put it on a list, it would probably rank right up there with eating brussels sprouts and getting soap in your eyes. However, budgeting is an essential tool for reducing stress and anxiety that is often associated with money and how you spend it. Let’s deal with a few small elephants in the room as to why people love to hate budgets.

1. Accountability

You don't see the invisible paparazzi following you around, taking snapshots of every penny you spend and smacking your hand each time you pull out your credit card. It feels like an invasion of privacy and after a while, your hand will get a little sore. But more importantly, no one wants to be told what to do with their money.

Here’s how you can help jump those hurdles. Get a clear understanding that you are the CEO of your money. Create a plan that makes you feel like you’re in control of your finances. Watch your money like you binge your favorite Netflix show. Go back to the old school method where you take a set amount of cash and put it in the cookie jar as your discretionary money to do with whatever you want. But remember, you can only put your hands in the cookie jar. All other accounts are off limits for frivolous spending.

2. Living In Denial

Unfortunately, when we embrace denial, it normally takes about a day for us to wrap our minds around the fact that we’re in financial trouble. Someone loses their job, or someone gets sick or gets a foreclosure or eviction notice – regardless of the reason for your finances being under attack, once your back is against the wall, it’s unavoidable and undeniable and the only way out is to address the issue head-on. That day of reckoning won’t be pretty – but you can recover once you start managing your money. Here’s the good news, you don’t have to go at it alone.

Automate! Automate! Automate! The average human brain isn’t designed to be rational. Saving is all about foregoing immediate gratification in favor of future comfort. But technology can be your best friend. Budgeting apps allow you to set up automated transactions in minutes. You can create triggers where every time you spend, you save. Reducing the amount of available for mindless spending, you create a system where splurging on a new pair of shoes takes extra steps, which means you are less likely to do it impulsively.

3. Budgets Require Too Much Work

While budgeting is a powerful tool to keep your spending under control, some people don’t like to think about household budgets. They’re too complicated, too time-consuming and in some cases, too scary. Even the word itself “budget” is a dirty word. But you need some way to keep your finances on track to prepare for when the unknown expenses show up unexpectedly, you can handle it. Yes, the initial setup and changing your spending habits can be challenging at first, but once you get a system in place that works for you, it’s a piece of cake.

Budgeting is a lifestyle choice and it’s different for everyone. It is the area of financial planning that takes the most home practice. But true wealth comes from saving and building your net worth. It comes from making wise financial decisions. A budget helps you to do just that. It gives you a way to direct your money instead of just letting it drain out the bottom of your checking account. You may look a little poor at first, but a budget will take you down the road to real wealth.


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