All throughout this month, I’ve been posting budgeting tips for you and your spouse or significant other. Last week, I included some tips about eliminating debt. This week, I’m talking about ways to decrease budget weariness.
Many couples (and people!) run into budget weariness after being on a budget for a while. To help alleviate this, I highly recommend having 3 extra categories in your budget. First, I recommend having a grace category. The grace category gives you a built in cushion for when unexpected expenses come up in a month. This is especially helpful for a while when you are first starting to budget and are still adding categories to your budget. The other two categories I recommend are splurge categories—one for each of you. Even if money is tight, there is usually something that you can allot to those categories. The beauty of these categories is that it allows you to spend money on things your spouse doesn’t necessarily want/need/see a reason to spend money on without having to feel guilty.
Another way to alleviate budget/financial weariness is to try some frugal but fun activities. These will vary widely based on your interests but could include things like walking, reading library books, attending free or inexpensive concerts (such as on a college campus or outdoors), free movie rentals (Redbox is always releasing codes for free movies, or get them from your local library), visiting a museum (our local art museum has free admission), visit your local or state parks, or anything else that you find enjoyable that doesn’t have a high price tag. Doing something like this can give you a chance to recharge your batteries and lessen the stress you might be feeling.
This brings us to the end of our series on budgeting with love. I hope it has been an encouragement and a help to you! And, if you have any final thoughts, I’d love to hear them in the comments.