New Year’s Resolution Reminder!

Today is the (self imposed, entirely made up) deadline for setting up a budget tracking system! This doesn’t mean you have to decide on your whole budget today, this means you are taking the next few months to track where your money goes. Once you have a good idea about how much you spend each month in each category, then it will be a breeze to set up some budget guidelines for yourself.

There are a few ways you can do this. You can set up an account with Mint (my personal favorite. It takes a while to set up, but after that it is basically zero maintenance and they all of your long term tracking for you).

You can make your own spreadsheet (minimal effort to set up, the amount of maintenance depends on how detailed you want to get).

You can even experiment with the cash-only system just by using your best guess and seeing how the money works out. Don’t forget to write down your adjustments so that you can figure out what your trends are.

Pick a tracking system that is easy for you. This is the first step to setting up a budget, and the budget is for you and you alone (or I guess, for you and your partner if you have joint finances). So make it a system that works for you! If setting up a Mint account makes you want to vom, then try another system. Baby steps, I promise it will be worth it in the end!

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