Fiddling vs. Doing: Budgets

I have a bad tendency to overcomplicate tasks. Budgeting is a great example. I’ve tried financial software and creating spreadsheets many times. I always wound up spending more time fooling around with the setup than creating a budget.

Today I decided to be as simple about it as I could. I took a piece of paper and wrote down the following: on January 15 I got a paycheck for x dollars. My next paycheck will be on January 31. Between now and then I have the following fixed expenses: This bill, x dollars. That bill x dollars. And so on. When I identified all of the bills I have to pay before my next paycheck I added the amounts and determined how much I have left for other expenses like groceries and gas. I’ll update my financial software with the planned transactions and track them every day.

I might get to the point where I use the budgeting feature in my financial software, but for now I need a budget. This process will do for now.