I often talk about what it takes to build a budget from scratch. I liken it to a house. You need a foundation, four walls, and a roof. These are the basics of a house. Houses are meant to be your home, and your money house or budget is no different.
Some may need to make do with the basic house for a while. These are people in a situation where they have too much debt of one kind or another or they don't make a large amount of money. There is no shame in this stage in life, even if you come to it in your later years. One question you should answer is, will you be satisfied with the basic money house forever?
I doubt you will. It is in our nature to move forward and strive for something new, fresh, and hopefully better. Once you have gotten your basic money house built (budget is in place and you are following it), next you can start making it your own.
If you have ever felt that a budget is restricting and limits your freedom, this is where we break that mindset.
Is there a particular something you have wanted for years but never been able to outright afford? What if you planned, in your budget, as a part of your money house, to put aside money for the purpose of buying that particular thing? It may take some months, though you have practiced sticking with a plan for a while, and now you have something you are moving toward.
Add that purpose to your budget. You are telling yourself to allocate money to this dream so it can become a reality at long last. How would it feel to make that purchase after the work of making sure you own it instead of it owning you?
Dreaming of a big family vacation? Add it as an item in the budget that you are saving for! Set aside the cash you need for travel, lodging, food, tickets, the whole thing! Then, plan and execute that vacation with the knowledge you can pay for it all!
The point here is, use your money house, your budget, to set your dreams up as goals. This way your budget is no longer a restrictive prison, but new boundaries keeping you on the path to what you want most.
How will you make your budget your own?