Let’s talk about money for a minute. I’m a spender, and not a “natural saver” as I have talked about before. I’ve learned to curb my latte habit. I’ve even managed to not turn to Amazon Prime every time I think I need something.
I put into place some new money habits that help keep me on track, most of the time. That’s the keyword right there- most of the time. I still make mistakes. I still splurge (even if I planned for it). I still spend money I don’t need to. And I want to continue to get better.
It’s especially important that I stay on top of my spending with the irregular income shift. So I decided I would post weekly spending reports. These reports are not what HisFI and I pay for together like our mortgage. This what I buy on the daily with my money. The little things that can get really out of control fast.
I began by posting them to my Instagram story for the @His and Her FI Post account.
Month one of weekly spending reports
July was an insanely expensive month for me with dental work, booking birthday events for Charles, and home improvement projects. I was honestly grateful to not have started sharing in July because it was somewhat horrifying how much money I spent. Another reason to track my spending.
I began with the month of August. If you missed the Instastories, here is a review of my spending for the month of August.
The weeks span from Sunday to Saturday. No reason, this is just how I decided to do it for the first month of tracking.
A reflection on what I spent in August and how I talk to myself
I decided when I posted the weekly spending reports on here, I would not jump into self-judgment or self-punishment. Instead, I decided it would be a good chance to share, learn and grow.
Instead of saying “I can’t believe you _____________”
I decided to think “What can I focus on dropping for next month?”.
If you think there isn’t a big difference between those statements, then think again. The way we talk to ourselves should be the way we would talk to a friend. I wouldn’t berate a friend for a frivolous purchase, so I’m not going to do it to myself either. *finger snap
Here are the things I noticed about August’s spending:
- I spent more than anticipated on clothes. This isn’t a value category for me so I want to reign this in.
- I tend to spend more around celebrations like a birthday or wedding. My giving filter should be restricted to reflect where I’m at financially- not what I want to give.
- I planned for the trip to Seattle so I felt comfortable spending that money
- I did not plan to hire Tori Dunlap, but I have a Business savings account that I used to cover this. It was also the best ROI ever! Highly recommend.
In the month of September, I want to focus on not buying any clothes (except for one sweater- which is a need). I also know that I have FinCon right at the start of September. I have saved for this in a high yield savings account. I am hoping to not have to use all of the savings up – but I may end of up spending more.
One more reason to share weekly spending reports for all to see
Journaling is something I have an on-again-off-again relationship with. When we are together, it’s pretty magical. When I abandon the relationship I don’t feel too much loss. How is this possible? (Not sure yet)
That said, I have a few empty journals. I needed a good reason to use them. Writing down my spending for each day is not truly “journaling”, but it was going to work. I then write these up in posts for the Insta.
I was excited to be using something that was meant to be used. I was happy to be writing on paper and not typing. I also found that I was really looking forward to sharing my own spending every week.
Being transparent about money is essential if we’re going to learn about it. Making a stage for safe money conversations begins with a safe money conversation about your own habits. Ultimately, that is why I am doing weekly spending reports for all to see. It’s a way for me to open up a conversation about the day to day money habits we all have. It’s a way to keep myself accountable. It’s a way to use my empty journal on the side desk.