I wasn’t planning on doing this month by month. I get paid 4 weekly and so it seemed like a bit of a cheat (PLUS when I decided to do it it was days before payday) to do it payday to payday BUT I’ve been pretty good this month overall and I think I’ve come in on or around budget anyway so.. in the interest of making it a little cleaner cut, we’ll work to calendar months!
If you have no idea what I’m talking about you can watch this video BUT (assuming you wont) I’ll give you the speed version.
I want to pay off all of my debt and accumulate some savings before we (hopefully) move house next year AND my current job situation is tenuous (my department is in consultation for redundancy) so I’m giving myself a £50 monthly budget for all superfluous, personal items.
This wont include my monthly nail appointment or any social stuff (although I’m trying to cut back GENERALLY) but anything from my compulsive amazon priming to a new foundation or a pair of jeans will have to come from that £50.
In hindsight, £50 is pretty generous and I may end up reducing it over time but having that budget in place is already making me reconsider impulse purchases and justifying makeup hauls so it’s definitely a benefit.
On to the spends..
Before I decided on the budget I did buy something ridiculous – but hear me out. It was Valentines Day (approaching) and usually I might buy some underwear or something fun for my husband.. something totally impractical and unecessary (don’t get me started on cards as a concept) but instead I bought us some new bedding. While we were in New York Lee commented on some sating sheets we walked by in Bloomingdales and I thought ‘oooh! maybe some silky sheets would be a nice Vday touch and a pratical home purchase!’
They were DIVINE.. I slipped between the satin sheet and the satin duvet, laid my head on the satin pillowcase.. it was dreamy.. until we tried to SLEEP in them. Satin bedding is a NIGHTMARE, folks. Funnily enough, we’d juat started bingeing The Mindy Project on Sky Comedy and she did a bit about this.. they slide around, you slide around, it’s like trying to sleep on a lilo in the ocean with a blanket made of water.. just ridiculous.
We lasted about 3 nights before switching so although it seemed pratical it was a total waste of cash (and almost half my budget) BUT I’ve kept the silky pillowcase for the skin and hair benefits people talk about.
So that’s £20 down.. and then I settled on the budget. At this point I’m thinking that doesn’t count but we were halfway through the month and thanks to my early Feb birthday, I had spent very little of my own cash anyway. I went to Primark with a friend and went a bit mad – actually now I think about it, this was before the budget because I blew it in this one trip BUT I had plans to try things on at home and return most, if not all.
I ended up keeping ONE dress – £15 and a pair of leggings and matching sports bra – £10
So we’re £45 in.. okay, I’ll admit ,I’d forgotten about the Primark spends and so I did go over BUUUUT remember I hadn’t even dreamt up this plan yet?? And I was really good for the second half!
I did a whole trip around Boots swatching things, looking for dupes and didn’t buy a single item (I think I deserve a spendholic medal, personally) but in that shopping trip I did buy something for £18 that I had needed since upgrading my phone (last month – that doesn’t count!!) a Skinny Dip phone case that would make my teenage daughter proud. Look at me, down with the kids!
Now, I’ll be honest, I did make one other purchase. I bought £25’s worth of stuff from Amazon for upcoming videos but I had a birthday voucher and that ABSOLUTELY DOES NOT COUNT so we’re not counting it – but just for full transparency.
So our grand total is £63 BUUUUT it was a half month and with that in mind, I’m taking it as a win. Since I enforced the budget I only spent £18 and I’m hoping to come in considerably under budget next month just to prove to myself that I can. I may actually bring it down to £25 if I do because I KNOW I don’t need to spend £50 a month of mindless shopping!! but I also know that my spendaholics understand that it’s not as simple as it sounds to you reasonable savers out there.
We’re trying to be more like you so before you judge, remember that.
If you’re participating, how did you spend your budget this month?
EDIT: I was going to post this at the end of February but since we’re late I thought I’d update and let you know I decided to give up ‘spending’ for lent but there wont be a ‘how I spent my budget in March’ because IN THEORY I wont have bought anything at all!!