Budget denial is a real thing. Today, we’re going to talk about its causes, symptoms and, most importantly, the cure. Before we get started, you should know that there are two types of people that suffer from this unfortunate state:
- The Never-Had-A-Budget-er: If you’re in this group, you don’t have a budget. In fact, you might not even realize that we pronounce it “Why-Nab”, not “Y-N-A-B”.
- The Oh-Crap-Where’d-The-Wagon-Go Budgeter: If this is you, you’ve fallen off of the wagon and let it roll right out of sight. You’re not that jazzed about getting back on, either, mostly because you’re worried about what you’ll see.
The Problem With Budget Denial
The effects of budget denial are easily summed up with a simple chart. The vertical axis represents fear. The horizontal axis represents time spent in denial. As the length of time increases so does your fear.
You’re fearful because you know things aren’t great. You know you should be managing your money better and that, the longer you wait, the worse it’ll be. The irony is that, the more scared you get, the harder it is to face the music—which is the only way alleviate your fear!
The cure for budget denial is realizing that your budget is your buddy. The real enemy—the thing that will punch you in the face when you’re not looking—is reality. And reality isn’t going anywhere. In fact, the more you avoid reality, the worse things get.
Like a true friend, your budget simply tells it like it is. The truth might not be pretty, but accepting your situation is the first step towards putting it behind you! If you can envision the end goal (a comfortable retirement, a new house, zero debt, etc.), then it’s easier to make short-term sacrifices. Trust me, they are so worth it.
It’s also worth noting that, ultimately, your game plan is totally up to you! Your budget shows you the facts, then you choose your path.
Budgeting: A Soothing Balm for the Soul
If you’re ready to release the fear that’s nestled in your belly, budgeting is your best bet. Even before you’ve reached your goals, you will notice that your money anxiety plummets. That’s because you’ve given every dollar a job, you’ve planned for the unexpected, and now you’re in control.
So, stop burying your head in the sand, and use your budget to shape the reality you truly desire. It takes a while. You’ll have to make tough choices. But the more you budget, the better things will get. Soon enough, you’ll be winning. So start, again (or for the first time), today!
The best part? Reality has to try much harder to land a sucker punch when you’re paying attention to your finances!
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