No matter how much financial advice you get, no one can ever tell you what matters to you. When you're making a budget, make sure you consider your own values while deciding where to put your money. Photo by Walter Rumsby.
As personal finance site Life and My Finances explains, most budgets tend to sort your money into various buckets without considering if those things really matter to you. A good budget might suggest spending 30 per cent of your income on housing, but if your home is the most important thing in your life, you might be willing to spend more. Conversely, if your home is just a place to rest your head in between your many excursions outside the home, you might be better off spending less on a place to stay and putting more towards a travel budget. What you value will determine how your money should be spent:
This one has been the real game changer for me because it helped me realise that freedom to me simultaneously looked like saving for emergencies and having a travel fund. Essentially, it taught me that the two could coexist.
Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, it's helped me save money because I avoid spending on things I don't really care about or simply don't make sense for me right now. For example, I don't really value a car, so I don't have one. The money then goes toward things I do care about, like travel or back into my business.
Obviously you should still throw in some responsible thinking. Budgets are designed to make sure you can sustain your lifestyle, not just throw money at whatever impulse you have that day. However, if you're adhering to a budget that doesn't reflect your values, it's probably not improving your life the way you want it to.