Budget and phone usage. How do these go hand-in-hand? Do they at all?
My phone. An inanimate object that I love and hate all at the same time. Do you ever feel this way? I work on my phone, chat with friends, scroll mindlessly, shop….wait, that’s how these go hand-in-hand. Keep reading, it’ll make sense.
Goal #1 is to put my phone down in the mornings specifically. I do work on my phone, but I don’t have to be on it while bubs is awake. I should have better time management, but since starting this blog and my instagram I have found myself blurring the lines of work, play, and ignoring my son. My goal is to not have my phone so easily accessible that I’m not paying attention to him. It’s really sad to think that I could be on my phone while he is playing or watching tv and not really know what is going on. Not like he could get hurt, but not soaking up what he looks like, what he’s doing, what he smells like. I mean, he’s growing up and he’s growing up fast. I don’t think I’ll wish I had bought an item of clothing or liked a photo at 9:45 a.m. 20 years from now instead of enjoying my time with him. He still naps so that gives me 2 hours in the middle of the day to do something. So, I need to have specific days that I do specific things so that I feel like I’m doing all that I need and want to do. Anyway, the goal is to enjoy my work but also enjoy being with our son more. Certain times are for certain things. It’s so important to set those boundaries.
One last thing about this. I also think that if bubs sees me on my phone more than interacting with him then he will think it’s normal to do that. Kids mimic their parents right? So I have to ask myself, “do I want him staring at a phone when we are all trying to watch a movie together?” “Do I want him staring at his phone instead of playing and using his imagination?” “Do I want him staring at a phone instead of reading an actual book?” Which, I love to read so I do plan on reading real books in front of him more often. I also want to read the Bible more often this year. The actual Bible, not the phone Bible. I want him to see things these. They are important things that he can learn early on in life. I want him to see that love of reading. Reading is a beautiful and powerful tool to have.
Do you feel this way about your phone? Think about what changes you may like to make.
Goal #2 is to save $$$. We aren’t sure exactly what we are saving for this year beyond retirement. We do have some things in mind, but we didn’t save like we should have last year. I asked for a budget book for Christmas exhilarating, I know, but I was so excited to get it! It truly helps me to write things down and see it on paper. So, I am writing down our expenses. I understand using cash for things, but really, we get points, money back, and up our credit score with credit cards. You just have to be aware and be smart about your expenses when using them. Do what you need to do to stick to a budget. Mine is writing it down. J can have it all on an app and see it all clearly. I have tried and it doesn’t work for me. THAT IS OK. We are all different.
Take time to really think about what you are wanting to save for. This helps me quite a bit in knowing what to buy and when to buy it, or helps me evaluate if I really NEED something. We love to travel and are thinking about another pretty big trip this year, which means we have to save. We absolutely can’t dip into savings every time we want to do something fun. Saving and budgeting really can be fun when you-
A) Have a method in place that works for you
- I have to write things down. J does not. We have different methods, but the same budget. You have to find what works for YOU. Even if you and your spouse are different. It keeps us on the same page even though we are doing different things.
B) Have a goal in mind for what you are saving for
- A goal for a trip helps me remember that I don’t need that sweater that badly, or that lipstick, or that nail appointment. It doesn’t mean I can’t do fun things for myself month-to-month, but what can I cut to obtain this goal?
C) Still allow room for fun things month-to-month
- Fun things can range from $5-500. What is your budget and what do you truly enjoy? Getting a special coffee once a month? Nails? Hair? Movie? What makes you happy and is worth budgeting for?
The way these do go hand-in-hand. Instagram is a powerful tool. Influencers are amazing and they do have great finds or ideas. It doesn’t mean you have to have it all though. That little swipe up is a powerful tool and so is like to know it. It’s great to buy through them. This is all hard work and they deserve pay for all the work they are putting in. However, I don’t need it all. Scrolling mindlessly can get you in trouble sometimes. Really evaluate what you are doing and what you are spending. I will be doing the same. I’m guilty of it. I’m no better than any one of you. As I go about this year and write down expenses though I hope that I can see how much I don’t need. If you are going to buy something though, go ahead and buy it through whomever you saw it from. They work hard and deserve a little credit.