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Finances & Money Spending

Can I Take a Break From Thinking About Money?

money problems, thinking about money, money advice

 


Do you ever get sick of paying attention to your finances? Tired of planning your spending and tracking every dollar?

Yeah, me too.

Our pre-weekend routine went as usual. I reconciled the the checking account, and paid the bills since it was also payday. I then sat down with my wife to discuss our discretionary spending plan for the next two weekends until the next payday. We both knew the numbers, and we both knew the plan. As we went to bed on Thursday night, we were completely in sync.

Things went completely downhill from there.

From the instant we got home from work Friday afternoon it was as if both of us lit our spending plan on fire and watched it burn without a care in the world. We took turns suggesting unplanned activities including going out to eat twice, using Father’s Day as an excuse for one of them. It wouldn’t have been so bad had we reassessed our situation to ensure we were on budget. But we didn’t.

We had been focusing so hard on our finances over the last few months that we hit that “Forget this!” point and just wanted to spend without consequences.

Except there were definitely consequences to this kind of reckless spending.

When I assessed the damage Sunday evening, I found that we had spent almost all of our discretionary funds for both weekends. Plans for the following weekend were immediately cancelled. At least we didn’t overspend to the point that we would have had to take money out of our savings to cover necessities.

This is the kind of spending behavior that we have worked so hard to get away from. No matter how sick we get of talking about money, we can never take a break from paying attention to our finances or we’ll fall right back into our old habits. Forcing ourselves to cancel our plans for the following weekend will serve as a good lesson to us as to the consequences for not staying on top of things financially.

Have you ever spent recklessly for a weekend without any thoughts of the consequences?  How bad did it get?

Brought to you courtesy of Brock

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Brock

10 Comments

  • Maybe you could put your “fun money” in cash so you really don’t have to think about it all the time. I think that anyone who’s used to doing what they want when they want will find a budget stressful at first, but over time, it should be DE-stressing, really.

    The Guardsman (a musical) has tickets for the FINAL WEEKEND on sale at the Kennedy Center for only $29 each. We could leave our daughter at home–I don’t think she’d like it $29 worth–and just take our oldest son, but the baby is too young to be separated from me for that long, and if we brought him, he’d have to have a ticket, too. So a $87 trip, with a $11 “convenience” fee and parking tipping it up over $100, would then become another $29 more expensive….

    Yeah, not doing it, especially so soon after the ballet. 🙁 It would have been so much fun, though!

  • We normally do take our fun money out in cash, Jenny, which is what made this weekend so uncharacteristic. If we swap around activities we always see how much we have left in cash – this particular weekend we didn’t do it……and that’s a mistake we won’t make again!

  • We did that recently where we spent all of our weekend entertainment money in one weekend and decided we would deal with the consequences later. We felt the repercussions the following weekend when we had to call off our plans to go out!

  • @joshua – That’s exactly what we’re doing as well. I don’t mind though, we’ll probably just rent a movie or play board games with friends. I actually love low key weekends!

  • There are some weekends and times that I do this, but it doesn’t impact me that much because I’m not living paycheck to paycheck. I always feel a little guilty after but I try to remind myself not to. I’m a pretty mindful spender overall.

  • @Daisy – That’s great that you’re in that kind of situation! While we did have some savings to fall back on if needed, if we constantly over spend we’d be in trouble!

  • @Mark Ross – Very True, Mark – our finances were headed down the wrong path and we’re trying to keep ourselves pointed in the right direction. When we slip up like this, we need to evaluate what we did wrong and fix it….immediately! Thanks for your comment!

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