It has not even been a month yet of using my newly downloaded budgeting app – iSaveMoney, and I’m learning a few things about myself. To be honest, the name of the app is a prophecy for me especially as I’ve recorded all my expenses for the last 3 weeks and it seems the app should be called iSpendMoney! #justsaying. Let’s just say I have about £40 to live on till the end of the month!
Let me give you a bit of history of my relationship with money. If you’ve been a regular reader of this blog, you may already have your suspicions of what it is/was. Let’s see if you’re right or wrong.
I think my thrifty life started in secondary boarding school where I had a set amount of pocket money for each half term, so I had to schedule the monies well or else na soak and travel till thy kingdom come! I know I’m a Christian but soaking garri overnight for it to multiply is definitely not what Jesus was doing in feeding the 5000!!
But seriously I inherited my thriftiness from my dad. I saved a lot. I’ll just come up with a rule like: save all the new notes you get. And I’ll stick to it till something major un-sticks it. In my family, I was the one who always had money no matter how dry things were.
And I mean no matter how dry! You might need to shake me
a bit a lot for the money to come out, but money was always there! No matter how small!
Image credit: FreeZeroBasedBudgeting
Fast forward to earning a salary and being financially independent. I had no budget. I just took money out of my salary to my savings account and spent whatever was left. If I finished what was left before the next pay day, na to drink garri and groundnut with cold water and milk! At least I had sugar to add. Or maybe call a quick fast! Hehe . . .
I’ve invested part of the money I’ve saved but I wanted to be a better steward of my finances especially after taking part in Rick Warren’s Transformed course last year. So I tried to keep all my receipts for January but my kitchen table was beginning to look like a secretary’s table! So I tossed them all in the bin and downloaded the app. These are some things I learnt about money and me:
- Buying plantain every week is overrated and unnecessary. Having plantain and yam and hard chicken in my house does not show my allegiance to Nigeria nor my level of Africanness! I can eat other things and still be nutrition-ised! Not every day plantain! 40p or 3 for £1.
- Forcing myself to eat what is already in the house and not buying additional stuff when there are things in my kitchen cupboard and freezer that have been screaming out to fulfil their destinies! So Operation Empty Out and Eat In!
- I can get emotional about not having enough money left in my spending account before the end of the month. My head knows GOD is my source but I think I have some control issues with money. So this morning, I had to offer my emotions to GOD and exchange it for HIS peace! Good riddance! Halleluyah!
- I don’t need to buy new clothing or shoes every month. There are clothes I haven’t worn in such a long time that when I wear them my brother asks me if I just got them. But I bought one dress from Debenhams but only because I had a £17 voucher to use before it expired and the dress cost £18. I was really smiley giving the cashier £1 – bargain!
- I can DIY my eyebrows myself to save £6 every 2/3 weeks on less than 8cm² surface area of my body #imo! I had it done in January and I’ve extended its lifespan using my tweezers! This same rule applies to waxing! I can’t fit be paying to inflict pain on myself. No sire!
- I can also DIY my watches. Two watches ran out of fuel earlier this week. Last month I spent £11.98 replacing two batteries. Ain’t doing that again. It wasn’t in za budget! So I opened them up using my pizza cutter, noted the batteries they used, went to Home Bargains and bought a pack of 12 batteries (different sizes) for 75p! My watches are now ticking even though I haven’t managed to close one yet! Trusting GOD for further wisdom to do that! Or get it done f.o.c. Amen? Amen!
But all in all, I think I keep a tight ship with my finances. Not wanting to add expenses to my app made me keep my eye off them ‘deals’ and ‘sales’ looking to get some of my hard earned cash! Shift + delete = disappear forever!! Haha . . .
If you’ve never tracked your expenses, I suggest you do; you’ll know where your money goes, which suckers need to be killed off, be more mindful of your spending, spend with your head and be a better steward. There are many free apps that can help with this. Of course, you know I went for the free one. I’m not paying to save money. Counter-intuitive to me. Lol . . .
To your being a better steward of your money, . . .