So I just spent two hours tracking allllll the entries that came in from our journal giveaway the other week (winners announced in a second), and thought you’d enjoy seeing some of the comments :)
If only to help you feel better that YOU ARE NOT ALONE with this $$$ stuff!
We’ve all got our problems!
Here are the tallies of everyone’s biggest trouble areas who entered – check it out:
Problems problems, everywhere! And as you can see – FOOD gives us all the most beef. Coming in at both first and third place, and even beating out the granddaddy of all problems – BUDGETING.
And I’ll admit it – our grocery bills aren’t the hottest either. How people eat for under $1.00 a meal is still beyond me, even though we’ve covered it over and over again here on this site! I think I’ve just resigned myself to accepting it and moving on to other areas, haha… Is that bad?
Next on the list you’ll also see TRACKING EXPENSES and DISCRETIONARY/MINDLESS SPENDING, followed by IMPULSE SHOPPING and then ENTERTAINMENT/SOCIALIZING with friends.
But my favorite was what came next: GETTING SPOUSES TO COOPERATE with your budgeting/finances! This guy here had me rolling!!
“What’s the one area of my budget I struggle with the most? My wife. $30K over budget for 2017. The budget category is “wife” because she has no idea on what the money was spent on.”
I don’t even know what to say! Other than of course that it’s not funny, and I probably shouldn’t be poking fun at it ;) But again – this is life!!! And there’s always something for us to be working on regardless of how good or not we’re doing with our money!
So please don’t let this stuff bring you guys down – it’s normal. And we’re all here to learn and get better over time like the good humans that we are.
If it helps, one of the BEST things my wife and I did when we first combined our own money was to set up our own “do whatever you please” accounts that allowed us to spend as freely as we’d like – without feeling bad or annoyed about what the other person would say ;) We capped it at $100/mo, but it was enough to relieve some pressure and can really be set at whatever you want. The trick is putting that *cap* on it though, so you know exactly how much you’re working with to not only budget better all around, but also to better reign in all your discretionary splurging as well. And believe me, when you know you’re not allowed to take out any extra money until the next month, you learn quick! (And it also helps both parties feel more in control too, regardless of who the main manager of the finances is)
So yeah, take it for what it’s worth!
Here were some other notes people sent in too that I found interesting and/or was nodding my head in agreement with the entire time:
“I have a hard time with “sales” for things I don’t need *at the moment* but can use/need later. It’s almost like hoarding…”
“My problem area with budgeting tends to migrate… I’ll notice I’m spending too much in one area (e.g eating out) so I’ll do an awesome job of reducing my spending in that category, but then I nearly always blow out somewhere else; like I’ll buy lots of books, or drive around and do lots of different days walks with my dog and wreck the petrol budget. I’m improving, but I don’t quite have my savings rate where I would like it to be!”
“I struggle with impulse buying and sticking to my budget. It is horrible. I literally need someone going around with a cane to smack me anytime I buy or even look at something that isn’t on the budget. I see something and I decide that I must have it. Only to realize that I probably don’t need it and in the part of the world where I am, we don’t do returns 😭. Even when I know I should not, I still go ahead and buy. I need serious help. Lol.”
“Ok J. Money, here’s my deal. My issue is not lattes and brown bagging lunches. I think most budgeted followers step over those penny’s to save dollars. For me it’s those multi hundred purchases. The Roomba, the high quality skin care, clothes to look good at the dinner party in upper middle class suburbia/hip family neighborhood x, new hobby (photography, watercolor, books!). This is the stuff that fills my soul or makes my life easier… sometimes temporarily and sometimes longer (which is why I keep doing it). Leave me the lattes and help me purge my $39.95 (five at a time) book purchasing habit! I want to read ’em all but you know I only ever get to like 1.5 of them. I need to split the wheat from the chaff and get wiser about those hundred something purchases that seem to show up every month.”
“The area of my budget that I struggle with the most is balancing fun with goals. I have my emergency savings and retirement accounts set up and am working towards paying off student loan debt (about $60k). I struggle with putting large amounts of money towards the debt while still making sure I spend a reasonable amount of money towards fun activities so my life isn’t totally boring!”
“I teach mindfulness as a psychologist and life coach, and have a beautiful day planner that I use on a regular basis (for my regular business and side hustle) because I’m very old-school and am not into digital things. Friends tease me that I only use my smartphone for phone calls! Due to this, I have struggled with the most with creating a detailed budget, which would involve first entering daily transactions to track my money, because even with the amazing programs out there (Mint, Personal Capital, etc.), I can’t seem to make myself get online to do it. I already know I would use a budget planner as I use my other planner daily, and did not even know budget planners existed until I saw this post, so thanks for sharing the info!”
Now to The Sea of Side Hustles!
So the above was all in response to trying to win our Mindful Budgeting Planner we were giving out, but then we had a 2nd giveaway too, all around a new Side Hustling Journal recently launched.
We asked people what gigs they were considering and/or already working on, and the results there were as varied as they were interesting as well! Check out the list below – maybe it’ll spur an idea for you too?
The beehives, video cookbooks, and electric bike ideas were my favorites :) Outside of blogging of course (which should really be more about passion than making money, as there are plenty of better/faster ways to make $$$ than blogging! Although it is fun, not gonna lie!)
Here are some snippets passed over which goes into more details on some of them:
“I want to purchase several beehives and start a small business making homemade beauty products and honey. As well as offering sponsorships to the community to aid in the care of a hive so everyone can do their part to protect the environment and the honeybees.” – Emmie
“I get a lot of compliments on my hair and questions on how I grew my hair long and strong. So my side hustle is providing a healthy hair journey (from shampoo/ conditioning to flat iron techniques) with same expected results of long and strong hair.” – Pam
“My plan is to start an adventure guiding business so that I can help share all the of the cool things I’ve found in this country (and eventually the world) with others (potentially kids?) to really show them what natural wonders our world has to offer.. whether right in their backyard, or across the globe!” – Justin
“I’m in the very early stages of Video Cookbooks focusing on alcoholic desserts. (I.e. jello shots, pudding shots, fudge and cakes.” – Jennifer
“I started a custom furniture business a couple years ago, and am changing course in that this year to focus on portable furniture and accessories to get people bringing their hobbies outside with their friends and family.” – Dan
“I have a fantastic idea for a pet product. It is actually a food product that I’ve already had tested at my local animal shelter with homeless dogs & cats. I cannot quite figure out what is holding me back from pounding the pavement…” – Laurel
(Here’s our own list of 70+ hustles we’ve featured over the years (and more in-depth) as well… There is always *something* you can do to channel your passion/skills! People need a LOT of help with things that you can do in your sleep!)
Onto The Winners of Our Two Planners…
Alright, so totally didn’t mean to tease y’all the entire time, haha… There was just SO MUCH GOOD STUFF in y’alls entries and they had to be shared! :)
But here we go – the winners of the two journals are… bum bum bum….
Congrats! If you didn’t win, PLEASE don’t let this stop you from still going after all your dreams and financial goals!! Spend the $30 or $40 picking up these journals if you think it’ll kick your ass in gear, otherwise just COMMIT to yourselves that you’ll make it happen on your own – and then go do it!
Gotta keep trying out angles until you find the one that works… But it all starts with “trying!”
See ya back after the weekend :)
(And hide all those wallets from the food/clothes/sales/amazons/husbands!)
Jay loves talking about money, collecting coins, blasting hip-hop, and hanging out with his three beautiful boys. You can check out all of his online projects at jmoney.biz. Thanks for reading the blog!