So I am not a numbers gal. Let’s get into what that really means.
Numbers stress me out. I’ve never felt a feeling of satisfaction about finding the solution to a math problem and I was vexed by the idea I would have to track everything- down to the last dollar.
In my last blog post, I talk about how emotion can be good when getting out of debt and tackling the mess. I guess I should clarify that those emotions can be positive and negative.
You don’t deserve to beat yourself up over past mistakes. That’s no good. But feeling the guilt of pushing off a goal should be a negative feeling. I made these charts and at first, I hated them. When I was unintentional, they just showed me the long road to nowhere. I was discouraged. And stressed. But once I started to gain traction and I understood the charts, having made them myself, it became a goal setting opportunity. I love the idea that some people can just be great with their finances because they are practical and patience people. That’s great. But that’s not me.
Surely, it may be a maturity issue. But it’s also about the G word. No, not God (although that’s a whole other journey respectfully). Gratitude.
So once I made these charts, life got a whole lot more stable, I finally had some clarity, and then soon they became the tools I used to fuel the fire. Numbers don’t lie, so when good things would come about because of my hard work, it was time to celebrate! Not with drinks out or a takeout at work. Instead, I would just check out the chart. Oh yes, what a feelin’!
Let me tell you something, young and single people. There’s is no better time. You don’t have to incorporate your spouse’s debt (yet!) and you don’t have to take into account their expenses or salary. It’s all on YOU!
Getting out of debt is H – O – T, hot! Single people, imagine how great it would be if your best friend/spouse had an idea about how to be a money-savey partner. Feel the relief? Now imagine if that was you! No not impossible. What a catch, right? Well. You’re reading this, aren’t you? It is you! And that’s awesome. You go, gal/guy. Like I said, financial literacy is attractive but even more so, the gratitude that comes with economic understanding. We are blessed.
Below my charts are a few links. The first is a link to help get organized with a budget. First, you need to write down how much debt (if any) then you need to find out what the minimum payment is and incorporate that into a budget.
The link to the YouTube video that helped make my charts me is simple, short, and very effective! Check them out.
Now on to these charts. No secrets here folks. Otherwise, what’s the point?
I started off with some medical debt and a credit’s debt. Once I knocked those out, I started focusing on the student loans. I wanted to scream. This wasn’t a forgotten doctor’s bill of $120. This was big money. And having dropped out of college after three years (I know, I know. Ouch is right.) I wasn’t exactly working with a great salary to begin with. Especially when food service was my main source of income. But I am more than comfortable showcasing my progress and allowing the readers to be apart of the battle!
Total debt: $16,213.22
I make a small payment on the first of every month. $203.84 Throughout the month I throw whatever money I earn at my second job that doesn’t fit into next month’s budget. Example: I have been planning a trip to California and I knew I would need to allocate some of the money from my second job to a separate account entirely to save for the trip.
Now that I set up July’s budget, saved up my goal for the trip, put some money into the CYA** Fund, and allocated for loss of income for time on vacation in July, plus additional funds because I am applying for a new part-time gig and start training at the end of July, I have been throwing the other money at the debt. My brother has a birthday today! When I bought his gift, instead of using money from my miscellaneous category (which is nearly over!) I used California money. Sacrifice and splurging is fine as long as it’s in the budget!
Here is it folks. Isn’t she beautiful? The Cover Your A** Fund!
I try to put away at least $150 into the emergency fund monthly. I should have $1000. That’s Baby Step 1 in the Dave Ramsey program. It should reach those proportions again soon. However, having the fund nice and fat just in case I take a big hit (car repair, new tires, medical bill, vet bill, towing, ticket, etc). My goal is a comfy $4000 but I’m a spender! I do have a sinking fund for my vehicle (a trusty 2003 Saturn Vue). However, those few hundred dollars in that fund would barely buy me a drivable lawnmower. (Hello, Bobby Bushay) So that is a huge issue with my budget right now. However, rolling with the punches until I can get that back where it needs to be.
EveryDollar tutorial done by my favorite vlogger, BlackSheepFinance, get your money right with a budget. If I can do it, anyone can! It’s name gets its origin from the zero-dollar based budget. You can have your miscellaneous catergory or spending the $$ for food on clothes when in a pinch, but it’s imperative that every dollar has an assignment. Otherwise, that’s when things get too complicated. Rule #1 K.I.S.S.
Here is the link to the very helpful YouTube tutorial that I used to make my thermometer chart. Huge when I feel discouraged. I just glance at my progress and then throwing that extra $40, $70 dollars to that debt seems even more worth it!
Thank you for your time! If you have found a great budgeting app or have questions on how I do my budget every month or for tips on how to track the spending, please feel free to visit the Let’s Chat icon on the homepage or leave a comment below!