Learning to budget sounds like such a big step towards adulthood! While we don’t disagree, we do realize budgeting teaches us more than just to allocate our funds better. It helps us realize what we want out of life, reveals our non-negotiables, and the things we’re willing to compromise on.
That said, here are a few life-lessons you’ll pick up when you start getting into money-management.
You decide what’s “worth it”
Learning how to budget is an active effort to understand the value you put on certain things. When you think about it, where does your money go? Do you spend it most on food? On travel? On social gatherings?
Taking a step back to see your spending patterns reveal your priorities. Some people put a lot of value in fostering good relationships hence the expenses on social gatherings. On the other hand, some people choose to spend more on traveling as a way to know themselves better.
At the end of the day, you get to decide how and where your time and money are best spent.
“Moving on” is a skill to master
We’ve all had shortcomings and that’s okay! Maybe we promised not to spend on something but still ended up giving in to it. Learning to budget teaches us that self-pity takes us nowhere. You can mope about failed budget goals or come up with actionable steps to remind you to do better next time. The same is applicable to life, no one will ever have a perfect run but we all have the opportunity to view these pushbacks as a chance to grow.
Yes, money is valuable but the constant and conscious allocation of it reminds us it’s merely a byproduct of doing good work. It’s a resource meant to be made and used as a tool to live a full life, not an end goal to life.
You should be your first priority
First order of business, look out for yourself!
Budgeting teaches us we can’t say yes to everything. We have to manage what we’re willing to give and to whom.
Before you start allocating for other people, you learn to make sure you’ve covered your personal expenses – including your “sanity expenses.” Sanity expenses come in different forms. Maybe it’s a movie date with yourself after a long work week or a venti cup of coffee on sunday mornings. Whatever you need to keep your heart happy, you are allowed to put that first.
The same logic goes – if you want to make a real difference in the world, giving away all your money to charity becomes counterproductive. In the long run, you’ll get to do more for the world if you’re able to sustain yourself first.
You are what you prepare for
When you think about managing your funds, you have your expenses and savings. Your expenses tell you what you value most, while your savings show you what you expect out of life.
What are you saving for? Are you planning for those rainy days or prepping for the success of a dream? Where your extra energy goes is a reflection of the kind of life you are looking to have. Much like the rules of manifestations – whatever future plans you have, consider it accomplished and start preparing for it!
Life isn’t a straight line
There’s a certain security that comes with having a plan. And as true as this is, learning to manage your finances will teach you that life doesn’t happen in a straight line.
Even with a planned budget allocation, sometimes life surprises us and throws curve balls that push you to think on your toes. When these curve balls show up, you’re forced to think about which among the things on your list you’re willing to compromise for the last minute request/s.
The main takeaway from moments like these is – everytime a problem shows up, life also opens doors for a lot of solutions. It’s a matter of choosing to see those problems as a gateway to solutions!
You are worth being better for
When you’re budgeting, you’re always challenged to meet your goals. Your logic and creativity are called to come up with things you never thought of before.
Just like any goal in life – there always are 3 entry points:
The Normal Route:
The normal route is the road most traveled. This is the conventional way of getting to a goal. In budgeting terms, if your goal is to have P500 for the weekend, then save P100/day.
The VIP Route:
The VIP route is the route where you get special assistance from someone who’s already accomplished the goal. It’s when you pull strings to get you a shortcut to where you want to be. Maybe you know someone who already works for the company you want to be a part of. Making that call is passing through the VIP route. In budgeting terms, this is when you ask for the extra P500 from your parents for your weekend budget.
The backdoor is the most underrated point of entry. This is when you identify a problem where the solution isn’t explicitly presented to you. In this case, you create your own solution. If you were looking to have P500 pesos at the end of the week, instead of using the normal or VIP route, you’re challenged to think outside of the box. You come up with a way to make that extra P500! Maybe you think of tutoring a classmate, or running errands for your parents. This route is when you take that extra initiative to get yourself to where you want to be.
If you haven’t gotten to learning about money-management, we’ve got tips and tricks up for you! Whether you want an extra boost for adulting or life, in general, check out our work-life balance and head on over to Edukasyon.ph!